Friday, December 02, 2005

Clinton NSC director on what Bush should say

Steve Andreasan, who served as the NSC director for arms control and defense policy for the entire Clinton presidency, has an op-ed in today's Baltimore Sun on the speech President Bush should deliver on Iraq. Could this serve as the basis for a bipartisan consensus? For your consideration.

As the president, I am responsible for the conduct of our nation's foreign policy. I made the decision to go to war in Iraq based on my judgment of the threat to the American people posed by Saddam Hussein.

"We now know that the information I had regarding weapons of mass destruction in Iraq before the war was wrong. Moreover, in presenting the case for war to the American people, members of my administration - including me - did not adequately explain the uncertainties surrounding the intelligence. That was wrong, and I apologize.

"I still believe the decision to remove Saddam Hussein from power was right. There are those who disagree. History will be the ultimate judge. But before the historians have their say, we must come together to stabilize Iraq, bring our troops home and win the war against Islamic extremism. These are interests that transcend the debate over the war or party politics.

"We are at a crucial phase in our efforts to build an independent Iraq. A new Iraqi constitution has been adopted, and the elections will lead to a new Iraqi government. Once that new government is in place, the Iraqi people must move quickly to resolve their differences and build a new Iraq. America will do everything it can to ensure their success. But American troops will not stay in Iraq to be witness to a civil war.

"As a first step in building a new consensus in America for meeting the serious challenges that lie ahead, I am inviting the Republican and Democratic leaders in both the House and Senate to meet with me at Camp David. We will set aside any partisan politics and work on a common strategy for stabilizing Iraq so that our troops can come home.

"We must also develop a common strategy for defeating radical Islam, strengthening our defenses at home and redoubling our efforts to keep nuclear, biological and chemical weapons out of the hands of those who would use them against us.

"I am convinced this is an agenda that has broad support in Congress, in America and in the capitals of our allies abroad. Let us now work together to ensure the security of America and the success of freedom."

The proposed language tracks pretty well with the op-ed Lieberman penned for the Wall Street Journal this week. If the Bush team had reached out earlier, perhaps in late 2003 or early 2004, they might have been able to hold on to more of a bi-partisan base.

I think that now this would be seen as too little, too late.
Over at Washington Note, Steve Clemons has been speculating that through the agency of Barbara Bush, there may be some serious housecleaning in the Bush administration--what Nancy Reagan did in getting rid of Don Regan, perhaps the Cheney/Rumsfeld team is on the way. Maybe the plan is then to move in the direction Andreasan lays out.
I'll just reiterate what I just posted in commenting on the last entry--that these attempts to create a bi-partisan, Bush-lite foreign policy strategy demonstrates that the Democrats have no claim to being considered a progressive political force.
It would be interesting for Andreasan to compare notes with John Hillen, who wrote in the Summer 2004 issue of The National Interest that a more pragmatic "middle way" needed to be found to salvage Iraq policy, secure U.S. interests and continue to support the export and promotion of U.S. values. Hillen admitted that such a middle way would be "ideologically uninspiring" but it may serve as the bipartisan foundation for a revised approach.
It would be interesting for Andreasan to compare notes with John Hillen, who wrote in the Summer 2004 issue of The National Interest that a more pragmatic "middle way" needed to be found to salvage Iraq policy, secure U.S. interests and continue to support the export and promotion of U.S. values. Hillen admitted that such a middle way would be "ideologically uninspiring" but it may serve as the bipartisan foundation for a revised approach.
You are correct american marxist.

At this moment the democrats are torn and divided by the "Bush lite" appeasers, fence walkers, and apologencia on one side, - and the vehemently anti-Bush government, change the course in Iraq and salvage America's democracy on the other.

The appeaser "Bush lite" side is reluctant to hold the Bush governments tarnished feat to expanding fire on any of the issues for fear of alienating the Bush government warmongers and profiteers, and their core constituents, (ie mega corps funding campaigns in return for favortism).

This appeaser, Bush lite side of the democratic party is doomed (in my opinion) to fail because the terrible costly bloody weight of factbasedreality is crushing their hollow airy promises and prognistications, and they, like the Bush government have no ears, are speaking with forked tongues, out of both sides of thier mouths, refusing to recognize, or accept failures, deceptions, abuses, and blindly holding to the dim hollow promises and visionary fictions and myths pimped - I mean mass marketed by the Bush government disinformation warriors.

This fence walking side of the democratic party is holding to the possibility of some success being wrenched from the horrorshow in Iraq sometime in the distant unknown unknown future and jockeying for political postion and the good favor, or rather - lack of vengefull wrathfull retaliation by the Bush government and GOP now, should some miracle transpire in Iraq, - or in the event of the WMD sequel to 9/11, or a second "pearl harbor like" tragedy.

Then of course, all bets are off, and the totalitarian dictatorship will implement a total police state, and America as we once knew it will be lost and gone forever.

This appeaser, fence walker, Bush lite side of the demmocratic party is wallking a thin shaky line and carefully wording a murky platform intended to blurr and/or coak the boundaries and positions of both camps. That apostate Liebermen, tragically Barak Obama, and even Hillary and others are risking loosing support and credibility within the party and theleft for holding to these flawed, deceptive, manipulative, failing, fencewalking, and patently false positions and tepid support of the Bushg government.

This divide, and the ensuing intramural discourse and debate are healthy and necessary components of a diverse party in the process of working toward unity, and regaining a voice amd power in the government.

At this point, the democratic party, and democrats or liberals in general including the appeaser, Bush lite, fence walker faction, have absolutely zero participation, input, or say in the decision making of the government or American policy.

All the decisions and all the responsibility and accountability for those decisions fall squarely and directly on the Bush government warmongers and profiteers, and the GOP reich.

Iraq, the economy, religious issues, the re-engineering of the Constitution and America's democracy, the robbing of poor and middle class Americans' to feed the super rich, and the shapeshifting, mangling, and morphing of America's core principles are the exclusive product and domain of the Bush governments and GOP's ruthless dominiation and total control of the government and America.

Democrats are merely spectators and voices crying in the wilderness in the conduct and prosecution of American policy at home and/or abroad. Democrats today have absolutely no voice or power within the government, or America.

Evidence is clear in all the many past and current investigations or legislations which are entirely controlled and administered by the GOP who deny supeona powers or investigatory reach, or access to vital information to democrats.

The results are rightwingideologue corporatist imperialst policies, non-investigations, whitewashes, and the stonewalling, cloaking, and shielding of the Bush government's failures, abuses, deceptions, perfidy, malfeasance, dereliction of duty, and wanton profiteering by the GOP controlled congress.

9/11, revenge outing of Valerie Plame and Breswter Jennings Associates, Cheney's secret oleaginous cabals drafting our energy policy, the secret machinations of the neo-fascist WHIG/OSP/OSI/PCTEG cabals contaminating the intelligence product and superceding the intelligence apparatus, phase I and especially phase II of invesgitations into the pre-war intelligence failures, the gagging and silencing of Indira Singh, Sibel Edmonds and other intelligence whisle blowers, the disinformation warfare and propagandizing operations conducted on and against the American and Iraqi people, the overarching intrusions of the USA Patriot Act, the suppressing of Ptech investigations, the perverting of American principles and re-engineering of American law to justify torture and extraordinary rendition, are only a few sordid examples of the GOP controlled congress resisting, stifling, stonewalling, and refusing to investigate issues, or hold the Bush government accountable.

More disturbingly - the GOP controlled congress denies democrats any say or input, or access to information relevant to these critical matters.

The otherside of the democratic party is also multi-faceted, but rapidly converging into a potent faction that percieves the Bush government as a totalitarian dictatorship run by neo-fascist cabals bent on usurping unbridled power and profit at the expense, and to the great disservice and disadvantage of the Ameircan people.

This "radical" side of the democratic party and liberal America percieves the current Bush government panjandrum as a government run amock, delirious with power and an insatiable thirst for blood, profit, and hypersuperiority.

This radical element of the democratic party and theleft see's America's government commandeered by radical neo-fascist cabals and arch conservative supremist rightwingideologues insidiously promoting and ruthlessly advancing the Pax Americana neverendingwar ambtions and designs and delusions of warmonger and profiteer in or beholden to the Bush government.

This element of the democratic party and theleft views the Bush government as criminal and incompetent, and untrustworthy.

This element of the democratic party and theleft considers the policies, ambitions, and machinations of the Bush government as wild and grotesque abuses and misuses of power.

This element of the democratic party and theleft consider the Bush governments policies and machinations as an obscene perversion of the core principles that formally defined our unique experiment in democracy, - as a radical re-enginering of the Constitution, our laws, and the political system to conform to the neo-fascist designs and ambitions of a totalitarian dictatorship commandeered by neo-fascist cabals and oligarch drunk on power and obscene wealth.

This element believes the Bush government is shaming, perverting, re-engineering, and ultimately destroying America in rabid pursuit of the nefarious political and economic gains of a select coterie of neo-facsist cabals, cronies, and oligarchs.

This element of the democratic party and theleft believes the Bush government has thrown sand in the face of the judicial and political systems, and ruthlessly betrayed the public trust.

This element of the democratic party and theleft view the Bush government as deceptive, manipulative, supremist, neo-facsist, corporatist, obdurate, and imperialist, warmongers, profiteers, sloganeers, and pathological liars who are destroying America, and betraying the people they are sworn to serve..

There are of course a large roiling mix of individuals within the democratic party and theleft holding to positions in the cushy middle with varying degree's and/or shades of gray opinions.

As these disparate elements and voices hone their respective positions, - a more unified and united democratic voice and platform will inevitably coalesce and form a vibrant strong party and a potent force of oppostion the GOP and Bush governments' unholy reign of terror.
I agree that the time has probably passed for trying the "bi-partisan" route. That would have been a great text if Bush had used it following his re-election, (although he would never say that he did not adequately explain uncertainties, mostly because he didn't think it was uncertain) but now with the mid-terms looming Bush polling lower than ever, I don't think many democrats would jump on his offer. Plus, while many in DC are talking about withdrawal from Iraq, it is still talked about in the distant future (well, at least over a year from now). I think if the President starts talking about it (or even mentioning it), it would pick up momentum and happen sooner than it should. In my mind, that means before there is a government there at least reasonably capable of supporting itself.

As for the split in the Democratic party, it really seems amazing to me. I originally thought that the Dems were going with the "give them enough rope to hang themselves" route as Bush's numbers have plunged while they largely just commented on it and tried to keep the focus on how wrong things have gone. Now I just think that they don't really have any cohesion or overall direction. I would have thought that they would embark on some sort of new, positive campaign (either on a foreign or domestic issue, but probably a domestic one) on some issue to get some positive spin and offer a hopeful alternative to the indictments and invective coming out of the Rep camp these days... but that's just me, and a domestic issue to boot...
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