They cut and run in the face of danger. They aid the enemy and give comfort to him in his hour of need. They don't understand the nature of the threat we face today.
Who am I talking about? The Democrats, of course.
The enemy they aid, give comfort to, capitulate to, and retreat from, is President Bush. Although they rode a wave of anti-war sentiment into office, the Democrats are doing their best to betray the voters by giving Bush every thing he wants -- money, troops, and his choice of generals -- but whining about it every step of the way. Hence all the non-binding resolutions, the schemes by folks like John Murtha to continue the war while appearing to oppose it, and the shameless posturing for 2008 by opportunists like Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama.
One of the schemes to trick us into thinking they oppose Bush was the insertion of language into the war funding bill that would have required Bush to seek Congress' permission before attacking Iran. Of course, there was never any danger of Bush getting a no vote on that. Obama, Clinton, and even the out-of-power-with-nothing-to-lose-loser-of-2004 John Edwards have been endlessly repeating Bush's mantra on Iran: "all options are on the table" to stop Iran's nuclear program. And even if an attack on Iran were voted down in Congress, since when has Bush been bothered by legality? Every law he doesn't like, he breaks. When he signed the law banning torture, he attached a signing statement that basically said, "I'm exempt from this law whenever I say so." How another piece of paper would prevent Bush from bombing Iran has yet to be explained.
But now the Democrats have scrapped even this pretense of opposition. They've taken the Iran measure out of the military spending bill, giving Bush permission to attack when he pleases.
The bill has also been making headlines because it sets a deadline in 2008 for the withdrawal of combat troops from Iraq, conveniently before a Democrat can win the White House. Out of the 140,000 troops there now (surge not included), only 60,000 are combat troops. So "only" 80,000 American lives would still be at risk for the control of Iraqi oil and the geopolitical power that would bring.
Essentially, the bill would force the military to end major combat operations against the resistance and the militias and pull back to those permanent bases nobody in Washington or the media wants us to know about. If this redeployment happens, the war will continue. That's because a majority of Iraqis don't want to be occupied in any way, shape or form. They don't want their country to be a colony, protectorate, satellite, or springboard for America's future wars against Iran or Syria. This redeployment would merely re-arrange the deckchairs on the Titanic. Or the Hindenburg, if you're a Stephen Colbert fan.
Iraq has been a godsend for the Democratic Party. Voters' anger over the war has outweighed their anger at the ineptitude, bumbling, cowardice, and betrayal of the Democratic Party. This dynamic is likely to make either the first black or the first woman President in 2008. But the track record indicates that a Democrat at the helm won't obey the voters and stop the war.
Pham Binh is an activist and recent graduate of Hunter College in NYC. His articles have been published at Asia Times Online and Monthly Review Online. He edits Traveling Soldier, a newsletter for anti-war military personnel. His website is www.politicsofhypocrisy.com and he can be reached at: firstname.lastname@example.org.