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This Is What Democracy Looks Like

www.NationalView.org's Note From a Madman

July 23, 2008

 

Should I Stay or Should I Go?

"What did we fight for in Iraq? I have some idea. I fought in Operation Iraqi Freedom. And 'freedom' means when the Iraqi people and their Prime Minister ask us to make a plan to leave, we do. But Senator McCain would occupy Iraq indefinitely, against their wishes. That's not what freedom means. That's not what we fought for. Senator, I thought you would know better."
-Brandon Woods in an ad from the group VoteVets.org

Woods is right. The Iraqi people, through their elected Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki (remember the purple fingers of Freedom?). have requested that our troops begin to leave their nation. It's what President Bush himself said he was waiting for and it's what has been asked of him.

"We will leave when the Iraqi People ask us to,"
-President Bush

They have officially asked us to leave. Al-Maliki said that US troops should begin leaving his country "as soon as possible," and also stated that Barack Obama's suggestion of 16 months is "the right timeframe for a withdrawal."

What more do President Bush and Senator John McCain want? Do they need an letter on official Iraqi government stationary?

Even McCain's own statement to Katie Couric says we should leave Iraq - only he doesn't know it:

"We've succeeded,"
-McCain

Forget about Mission accomplished. John McCain, President Bush's would-be successor himself admits that Iraq is a success; that we, indeed, have accomplished our mission. (Oh sorry - I did say "forget Mission accomplished")

McCain continued with is argument for staying by stating the reasons to leave Iraq:

"We will come home in victory,"
-McCain

Last I looked, success was measured by victory when it comes to war. Sounds to me like McCain thinks the troops should come home too. Then McCain gave his only reason for staying in Iraq:

"Al-Qaeda is not defeated. They're on the run, but they're not defeated,"
-McCain

McCain seems to be having a problem with geography or he's mixing up his wars. Al-Qaeda isn't the problem in Iraq. They are, however, the problem in Afghanistan. And although just a short time ago McCain claimed that Afghanistan showed us "how to win" in Iraq (the first Bush war - the war which the whole word supported us), that war is where al-Qaeda and the Taliban are fighting.

The Iraqi people, and the Sunnis in particular, have rejected the ultra-conservative Islam of al-Qaeda and have forced the terrorist organization all but out of Iraq. Are there remnants? Probably. But everyone on this planet knows that Osama bin-Laden and his band of terrorists are a real problem for the Afghani people.

Everybody except John McCain, that is.

McCain finished his thought to Couric with this:

"So we have to be prepared to continue to do what's necessary to succeed. ... But we have succeeded in the strategy. There's no doubt about it."
-McCain

Sounds like someone went to Bush U.

And that's just a bad institution.

-Noah Greenberg



CBS Covers Up For McCain

On the subject of media scandals, this one is a whopper. On the July 22 edition of CBS evening news, Katie Couric interviewed McCain. This is the question / answer that was televised:

COURIC: Senator McCain, Senator Obama says while the increased number of U.S. troops contributed to increased security in Iraq, he also credits the Sunni awakening and the Shia government going after militias, and says that there might have been improved security even without the surge. What's your response to that?

McCAIN: Senator Obama has indicated by his failure to acknowledge the success of the surge, that he would rather lose a war than lose a campaign. Thanks to General [David] Petraeus [commanding general of the Multi-National Force in Iraq], our leadership, and the sacrifice of brave young Americans. I mean, to deny that their sacrifice didn't make possible the success of the surge in Iraq, I think, does a great disservice to young men and women who are serving and have sacrificed. There will still be attacks. Al Qaeda's not defeated. But the progress has been immense. And to not recognize that, and why it happened, and how it happened, I think is -- is really quite a commentary.

Now comes the scandal. CBS left a written transcript of the interview on their web site. The written transcript is at odds with what was actuallytelevised:
 

COURIC: Senator McCain, Sen. Obama says, while the increased number of U.S. troops contributed to increased security in Iraq, he also credits the Sunni awakening and the Shia government going after militias, and says that there might have been improved security even without the surge. What's your response to that?

McCAIN: I don't know how you respond to something that is a -- such -- such a false depiction of what actually happened. Colonel MacFarland was contacted by one of the major Sunni sheiks. Because of the surge, we were able to go out and protect that sheik and others. And it began the Anbar awakening. I mean, that's just a matter of history. Thanks to General Petraeus, our leadership, and the sacrifice of brave young Americans. I mean, to deny that their sacrifice didn't make possible the success of the surge in Iraq, I think, does a great disservice to young men and women who are serving and have sacrificed.

In fact, the written transcript and what was televised differs in three significant places. CBS claims this was an editing mistake. I find it unlikely that three separate editing mistakes occurred that are all favorable to McCain. This appears to be a deliberate cover up of an absolute awful McCain interview. Why is it awful? Simply because the time line is all wrong. The Sunni Awakening Councils were formed months before the actual troop surge! In fact, the idea of working with Sunni tribal leaders was floated by General MacFarlane in 2006!

Subsequently, McCain claims there was a surge before the surge. I suppose only McCain knows about this double secret surge?

http://mediamatters.org/items/200807230001?f=h_top

-Robert Scardapane



In response to, "It (Iraq's Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki's agreement with the timetable set by Candidate Barack Obama of sixteen months removal of US troops, depending on events in that nation, and the reversal statement issued) more than likely means that someone got to the Iraqi Prime Minister from the Bush administration," Robert Scardapane writes:

Madman, there has been a lot of spin on this issue around the notion of a bad translation (made by an aide to Maliki after a call from the Bushitas). The NYT reports:

[T]he interpreter for the interview works for Mr. Maliki's office, not the magazine. And in an audio recording of Mr. Maliki's interview that Der Spiegel provided to The New York Times, Mr. Maliki seemed to state a clear affinity for Mr. Obama's position, bringing it up on his own in an answer to a general question on troop presence.

The following is a direct translation from the Arabic of Mr. Maliki's comments by The Times: "Obama's remarks that - if he takes office - in 16 months he would withdraw the forces, we think that this period could increase or decrease a little, but that it could be suitable to end the presence of the forces in Iraq." He continued: "Who wants to exit in a quicker way has a better assessment of the situation in Iraq."

Here's the scoop on Media Matters:

http://mediamatters.org/items/200807210002?f=s_search

It's clear that Maliki, the Iraqi people and American people are ready for troop withdrawal from Iraq. Obama has a plan to do that in 16 months.



In response to, "Then how come Hillary Clinton and many other Democrats were able to vote against it (FISA)? How is it the best possible bill when it isn't? Shredding the Constitution is NOT better when a Democrat does it than when a Republican does it. That's the kind of thinking that is destroying the country, actually. And has certainly eviscerated democracy as we know it. Making excuses for the Democrats is not the answer. Taking EVERYONE to task is," Ginger writes:

No one is excusing anyone, but it doesn't hurt to have an open mind and give Obama the benefit of the doubt. Yes, ultimately they're all responsible for the mess we're in, but Obama did vote against the war while Hillary & McCain were gung ho. Hillary's vote against the Patriot Act was nothing more than political grandstanding. What did she have to lose by voting with the minority? Obama had much more at stake, so this undoubtedly reflects his conviction regarding the necessity of passing this admittedly flawed bill.

Maybe you should back off your incessant criticism of Obama before someone starts questioning if you're a Democrat.


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-Noah Greenberg