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Democrats, take a stand

by : Helen Thomas
Sunday August 28, 2005 - 01:17
12 comments

by Helen Thomas

WASHINGTON - It’s time for the Democratic Party to take a courageous stand and call for the withdrawal of troops from the senseless war in Iraq.

Its human cost and the billion-dollar a week tab in Iraq should give all Americans pause.

Would the Republicans have hesitated to challenge the Democrats if the shoe was on the other foot? Did the opposition party give former President Bill Clinton any slack while he was in office?

What is the logic of Sens. Hillary Clinton, D-N.Y., Joseph Biden, D-Del. and other so-called moderate Democrats still backing the unprovoked war in Iraq when they know they were sold a bill of goods?

Furthermore, they are urging that more troops be sent to Iraq. And they are doing so at a time when the generals in Iraq are giving mixed signals. Some are talking about a draw down of troops in a year, others in four years.

Are the Democratic leaders afraid to admit they were wrong? Does the credibility of the administration - and therefore the country- mean anything to them?

Both Clinton and Biden are presumed presidential contenders in 2008. That leaves Democratic voters -many of whom are anti-war- with no choice if either wins the party nomination.

Can Biden and Clinton give young men and women any valid reason why they should lay down their lives in a war that we didn’t have to fight in the first place? The fallback position apparently runs like this: "We’re there and we have to stay there now. We can’t cut and run."

I heard the same refrain during the dying days of the Vietnam War. And so did the moderate Democrats. Whether viewed as a "mistake" or a "noble cause," the fact is that Vietnam survived and thrived after we departed. It is a participant in the global economy and fairly friendly to us.

I always thought the debacle in Vietnam and its aftermath had taught us a lesson. But apparently not.

Not all Democrats are so clueless. In an opinion article on Wednesday in The Washington Post, former Sen. Gary Hart, D-Col., wrote that "history will deal with George W. Bush and the neoconservatives who misled a mighty nation into a flawed war that is draining the finest military in the world ... diverting Guard and reserve forces that should be on the front line of homeland defense, shredding international alliances that prevailed in two world wars and the Cold War ... and weakening America’s national security."

But he is also tough on his own party and asks: "What will history say about an opposition party that stands silent while all this goes on?"

Sen. Russell Feingold, D-Wis. is proposing a total pullout of American troops by Dec. 31, 2006. Why wait a year?

Some Democrats think the party should simply take a back seat, bide its time and watch the Bush administration defensively struggle for answers to Cindy Sheehan, the California mother who lost her son, Casey, in Iraq. Her vigil continues adjacent the president’s Texas ranch.

Bush told the Veterans of Foreign War the U.S. will accept nothing less than "total victory over the terrorists and their hateful ideology."

His new argument is that anti-war protesters who want the troops brought home quickly are "are advocating a policy that would weaken the United States."

Bush himself acknowledged there were no ties between the deposed dictator Saddam Hussein and the 9/11 attacks. The 9/11 commission concluded that there was no evidence of "a collaborative operational relationship" between Saddam and Osama bin Laden’s al-Qaida terrorist network.

The U.S. invasion of Iraq has changed that equation. The Iraqi resistance is being helped by outsiders - whether terrorists or sympathizers - who were not in Iraq before we attacked.

Did Bush think that at least some Iraqis some would not stand and defend their country? Is patriotism simply an American phenomenon?

White House reporters have noted that in addressing military families, Bush is citing statistics on Americans killed in Iraq - a figure now approaching the 2,000 mark. But the candid test will be when he notes the numbers of Iraqis who have been killed since the U.S. invaded their country.

Democrats have gone about their lives after giving the president a blank check to do anything he thought was necessary. They think they have absolved themselves of responsibility. It’s somebody else’s war.

But they might find that if they don’t get some backbone and take a stand soon, the voters might not be that forgiving.

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Commentaires de l'article
 

> Democrats, take a stand
Sunday August 28 - 15:58 - Posted by 4db7f9c4e2888f90...

Bless you Helen. If only others would stand behind you and speak the truth. Right on. Helen for President.




> Democrats, take a stand
Sunday August 28 - 16:42 - Posted by 823167ba4cc8ff2b...

Way to go! I have watched the vindictive actions of G. Bush over the past 5 years. I saw him give you the "treatment" when you asked a legitimate question which he did not care to answer. I was sorry to see you go as you were one of the few independent voices which would ask important questions. Today we have a solid corps of sycophants, good-will-to-Bush applauders, people paid to slant the news instead of finding out what it is. Today we have many evidences of Bush and company lies, distortions, and misinformation for the sake of True Believers and neocon corporate executives, yet it is strange that information like the British Memos are treated as trivial or barely news or perhaps anti-Bush propaganda.
It is strange to read blogs and news items in which Bush supporters insist there were WMDs, nuclear devices, and that Saddam was more EVIL than George Bush. We need honest journalists lest we be innundated with the sermons, prayers and tributes intended to make Bush the Lord of the Universe. This nation is in grave danger of becoming a facist theocracy, by the corporate elite, for the corporate elite, and from the corporate elite. I watched Benito Mussolini, Adolph Hitler and Francisco Franco impose their fascism on entire nations, and am distressed that Bush is following the same strategy and scenario. It is true that we are a nation of sheep, and that the stupidity quotient of the population is fast approaching absolute silliness.
So, I’m grateful that you are a voice in the Bush wilderness, warning us of danger in our midst.




> Democrats, take a stand
Sunday August 28 - 19:22 - Posted by 9e976687ed4ce970...

Helen, you answered your own question regarding Hillary Clinton and Joe Biden. Both are manouvering to run for president in ’08 , so they wouldn’t DARE do anything to rock the boat.
Democrats who are sick of all the bushshit should vote their asses out at the first opportunity and bring in people with a conscience, not career millionaire politicos.




> Democrats, take a stand
Sunday August 28 - 20:16 - Posted by 43b59c8a205d29f7...

What the ’debacle’ in Vietnam taught us Helen, was a sense of humility,quietly shared by millions, over time it obviously faded.
This feeling is not easily passed from one generation to another, nor found in the genetic code or the DNA.
The return of hubris was in the covert and secret operations authorized by Jimmy Carter to provide Russia with ’their own Vietnam’ in Afghanistan.
This feeling of American omnipitence (tempered with caution) was vigorously renewed by George the Dad.
George the Son has taken hubris (as the expression goes, to another level) with a preemptive war and delusions commonly shared by all powerful leaders from the Caesars to Mr. A Hitler.

jt



> Democrats, take a stand
Sunday August 28 - 21:56 - Posted by 8eda787dd5a440df...

Helen you are an Angel, I have been a fan of yours for years, good to hear of you again. Keep up the good work.

I would like to get a draft "Mark Clark, Gen,USArmy Retired)" to run again for President. I am certain he could get the US out of Iraq pronto and not loose face while doing it, he did a magnificant job of ending the balkin conflict and setting up the means to put Slobodon Molosovitch befor the Hague for war crimes without loosing a single American.
The fact that he was once a Republican while in the military is not significant, most top brass in the military, no matter what branch claim to be Republican, at least they talk the talk and walk the walk so as to not go against the top brass.
The Democratic party needs a new face who is not ingrained in the good ol’ boy system. Clark has the brains and the experience of commanding a NATO force, a position that takes a lot of diplomacy to command the forces from many nations. He is the candidate I will vote for if he runs.

I spent 26 years in the military, 1957-1983 and I have seen how a screwed political war can go wrong from the beginning, Vietnam is the most well known, there were other adventures the US got involved or instigated that did not go as planned.

The old regimes of the two parties are too much ingrained in pork barell trade offs in attempts to stay at the trough to represent the majority of their constituants.

James



> Democrats, take a stand
Sunday August 28 - 21:51 - Posted by be203e4ec86f567c...

Thank God for tellers of truth!

Check my site for pictures of Crawford the media fails to show.

I got a first hand view of being there, then seeing it portrayed by the media....oh my how they lie. I was cynical, but this was crazy -it was completely untrue the way it was chopped up by the msm.

http://prissypatriot.blogspot.com




> Democrats, take a stand
Sunday August 28 - 22:54 - Posted by 587dd50408db0603...

Nice talk, but does this help the millions of innocent people who have been killed due to reckless actions of the U.S..
All Americans are guilty and we don’t take any funny excuses. While you are sitting home at your breakfast table third world people in Afghanistan or elsewhere who are innocent and poor beyond recognition are killed by your smart "freedom bombs".

Have you ever asked yourself why the Germans in Nuremberg have been told they were "all" guilty?
Now it comes back to you, because you are the new menace of the century Americans.

Stop murder and theft! Start in your own country which is one of the most violent place on earth.

Phony Christianity and church going does not help!




> Democrats, take a stand
Monday August 29 - 02:35 - Posted by 4e40df4a8a803acd...

can’t you people out there understand that the two parties are one and the same in regards as to who support them? Can’t you understand that the system calls for all politicians to adhere to the rules set by their corporate donors? of course the democratic whores want to keep the killing in Iraq. the longer the killing lasts, the wealthier they get. it occurred in vietnam and it’s happening in Iraq. they gave the game away when they stated that this would be a perpetual war. they don’t care. they are not out there dying. they just reap the profits!!!!



> Democrats, take a stand
Monday August 29 - 02:56 - Posted by 587dd50408db0603...

No, Bush did not think any Iraqis would stand and defend their country. He thought the Iraqi people were all fat and brainwashed by their churches, schools, and media just like here in the U.S.A. where people can’t get up off their couches long enough to realize they are being ripped off, lied to, and exploited, much less do something about it besides eat some more junk food and turn the channel....he thought the motto: "Ma, help me up, I just shit the bed" applied to Iraqis like it does to Americans.




> Democrats, take a stand
Monday August 29 - 05:34 - Posted by 76156accd7463727...

touche’ to that. mighty strong condemnation of the hapless people out here mesmerized by hollywood, sports, chitchat on the news channels, inconsequential ’news’ like fires, drivebys, cats stranded up in trees, etc.etc.etc., but then again as I look around, that’s exactly what I see. how pathetic.



> Democrats, take a stand
Monday August 29 - 11:28 - Posted by 587dd50408db0603...

The American people are now considered officially DUPED, and that is going to be the policy as long as Americans are uninterested in their own well being.



> Democrats, take a stand
Tuesday August 30 - 06:39 - Posted by cd280f97c69dbc93...

democrats take a stand. What a lie. weather you vote republican or democrat it don’t matter it’s still one vote for a corrupt and evil government controlled by the rich elite. The Helgian concept to controll the masses. You give them a perceived choice between the left and right when the reality is it’s all one party. Untill we wake up and see that we are and have been manipulated for decades abd decades this illusion will continue.






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