Failed Iraq Policy

From the Center for American Progress:

  • The American public is no longer buying the administration’s line on Iraq. While the media’s attention has largely strayed from the ongoing chaos in Iraq, the American public remains focused on that issue, ranking it as the most important factor they will consider when going to the polls this November. Sixty-one percent of Americans believe that the Bush administration does not have a clear plan for handling Iraq, and 58 percent believe Congress is not doing enough to oversee the administration’s policy. Rather than addressing the substantive concerns the public has about Iraq, administration officials have instead offered beyond-the-pale rhetoric comparing war critics to Hitler appeasers and assailing them as terrorist abetters. Eighty-four percent of national security experts polled recently, on a balanced nonpartisan basis, said that we’re losing the war on terror; an additional three percent said that the war in Iraq has had a negative impact on the war on terror.
  • The conditions on the ground in Iraq continue to reflect an anarchic civil war. “The everyday life of Iraqi people is dominated by the constant threat of sectarian violence and civil strife,” U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan said recently. “Both the Bush administration and military have said sectarian killings and violence are surging around Iraq and in the capital.” “It’s barbaric but sadly we’ve become used to it,” an Iraqi Interior Ministry official said of bodies found around the capital, in both Sunni and Shi’ite areas. “Forty bodies, 60 bodies — it’s become a daily routine.” Nearly 200 bodies of Iraqis who had been tortured and shot have turned up around Baghdad in the past week. The problem isn’t isolated to Baghdad. The situation in western Iraq — the Anbar province — is also “dire,” and the military has reported that the battle for hearts and minds has been lost there.
  • The Bush administration continues to support its decision to go into Iraq with assertions that have been proven false. A new Senate Intelligence Committee report on pre-war Iraq intelligence explains that Saddam Hussein and Osama bin Laden were enemies, not collaborators. The report states, “Postwar findings indicate that Saddam Hussein was distrustful of al-Qa’ida and viewed Islamic extremists as a threat to his regime, refusing all requests from al Qa’ida to provide material or operational support. Debriefings of key leaders of the former Iraqi regime indicate that Saddam distrusted Islamic radicals in general, and al Qa’ida in particular… Debriefings also indicate that Saddam issued a general order that Iraq should not deal with al Qa’ida. No postwar information suggests that the Iraqi regime attempted to facilitate a relationship with bin Ladin.” The report also claims Saddam “did not have a relationship with, harbor, or turn a blind eye toward Zarqawi.” Yet Bush and other White House officials continue to assert the false link.

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Outstanding commentary!!

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Errington C. Thompson, MD

Dr. Thompson is a surgeon, scholar, full-time sports fan and part-time political activist. He is active in a number of community projects and initiatives. Through medicine, he strives to improve the physical health of all he treats.

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A Letter to America

The Thirteeneth Juror

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