- News Analysis: The new war strategy (FCN, 01-26-2007)
(FinalCall.com) – The strategy of increasing the number of U.S. troops in Iraq, which was outlined by President Bush in his address to the nation Jan. 10, is “the most dangerous foreign policy blunder in this country since Vietnam, if it’s carried out.”
Those are not the words of one the President’s “Left Coast” partisan adversaries who find fault with everything he does. Rather, Sen. Chuck Hagel is a Republican from Nebraska.
They are not the words of a “tree-hugging” anti-war liberal. Sen. Hagel is a decorated Vietnam War veteran.
Rather, Sen. Hagel’s comments represent the depth of opposition–even among Mr. Bush’s “friends”–that has been expressed over the President’s announced plan to increase by 21,500, the number of U.S. military personnel occupying Iraq.
It gets worse for the President. An Associated Press-Ipsos poll revealed that, 70 percent of the public opposes the administration’s announced plans.
Another senator believes top officials in the Bush administration have privately concluded they have lost the Iraq war and are simply trying to postpone disaster now, so the next president will, “be the guy landing helicopters inside the Green Zone, taking people off the roof,” the way U.S. forces finally withdrew from Vietnam.
“I have reached the tentative conclusion that a significant portion of this administration, maybe, even including the vice president, believes Iraq is lost,” Sen. Joseph Biden (D-Del.) said a week before Mr. Bush’s prime-time speech to the nation.
“They have no answer to deal with how badly they have screwed it up. I am not being facetious now. Therefore, the best thing to do is keep it from totally collapsing on your watch and hand it off to the next guy–literally, not figuratively,” Mr. Biden told The Washington Post.
Even military family members are stunned.
“I don’t have words for it. This is a war that should never have happened, that has wreaked so much havoc on our loved ones, Iraqi children, women and men, and now to be facing, almost four years into it, this news of an escalation of the war, is just unbearable,” said Nancy Lessin, with Military Families Speak Out, in a broadcast interview.
And yet, Mr. Bush persists with what is being described as a “Hail Mary pass.” The sports analogy refers to a desperate, last-minute football play, in which a losing quarterback throws a pass into the end-zone, while offering a prayer that one of his team’s players is able to catch it and score a touchdown.
The outcome of Mr. Bush’s policy cannot bode well for this country. It is as though, through some miraculous invention, we were watching the Emperor (Pharaoh’s) statement to the press, just before he ordered his army into the Red Sea, rather than the President of the United States about to repeat that Pharaoh’s blunder, ordering even more U.S. troops into Iraq.