[Marxism] Kerry says he'll keep US troops in Iraq; warns that Bush may bring them home!
duaneroberts92804 at yahoo.com
Sat Jul 17 20:54:35 MDT 2004
In an article entitled, "Kerry Sets Test for Iraq
Withdrawal", that was published in the Friday, July
16, 2004 issue of The Wall Street Journal, Senator
John Kerry boasted that when he becomes our next
"Commander-in-Chief", he has no intention whatsoever
of implementing any kind of a "timetable for [the]
rapid withdrawal of the roughly 140,000 U.S. troops
now in Iraq".
In fact, the good Senator from Massachussetts strongly
hints that when he's sitting in the Oval Office, the
odds are good that the United States will be
militarily occupying that country for quite a long
period of time; he says he won't even seriously
consider making a "pledge to end the U.S. presence in
Iraq, even by the end of his first term."
But in a very foreboding tone, Senator Kerry warned
The Wall Street Journal that "Mr. Bush was more likely
to do so" (i.e., pull out of Iraq). He claims he has
heard rumours suggesting that that dumb draft dodger
in the White House is right now is plotting some sort
of "October Surprise": the sudden withdrawal of
thousands of U.S. troops from Iraq "to improve his
"I've heard [it] said by many people"
that the White House might be
gearing up to withdraw troops before
the November election. "I'm prepared
for any political move" on Iraq,
Mr. Kerry said. "I'd put nothing past
Yup! I'd put nothing past the scoundrels in the
Bush/Cheney junta, who, in a last ditch effort to save
their own skins, suddenly decide to pull thousands of
U.S. troops out of Iraq in direct response to the
massive anti-war movement that has been building up
within this country over the past two years. What a
horrible thought, isn't it? The nerve of these stupid
chicken hawks responding to widespread public
discontent (even within the ranks of the Republican
Party) over the bloody imperialist war they launched!
Can you imagine that?
And besides this, if "Dubya" manages to pull this off,
how will Senator Kerry ever recover from such a
devastating blow? I mean, the good Senator has been
portraying himself throughout his campaign as being "a
leader of strength, one who would more effectively
pursue the same goals Mr. Bush has established for
progress in Iraq and the broader anti-terror war". How
can he continue to "out Bush" Bush if Bush decides to
"out Bush" him? ;)
Duane J. Roberts
duaneroberts92804 at yahoo.com
POLITICS AND POLICY
Kerry Sets Test for Iraq Withdrawal
Candidate Seems Unlikely
To Commit to Terminating
Presence of U.S. Troops
By JOHN HARWOOD and JACOB M. SCHLESINGER
Staff Reporters of THE WALL STREET JOURNAL
July 16, 2004; Page A5
CHARLESTON, W. Va. -- John Kerry set a three-part test
for removing U.S. troops from Iraq if he is elected
president, while warning that President Bush might
commence a more rapid draw-down this fall to improve
his re-election prospects.
The three conditions, Mr. Kerry said in an interview
with The Wall Street Journal, are "to measure the
level of stability" in Iraq, "to measure the outlook
for the stability to hold" and "to measure the ability
... of their security forces" to defend Iraq. Until
each condition is satisfied, he added, "I will provide
for the world's need not to have a failed state in
Iraq." (See excerpts from the interview.)
Mr. Kerry's remarks, two weeks before he accepts the
nomination of a Democratic Party with deep misgivings
about the war, indicate the Massachusetts senator
isn't preparing to spell out a timetable for rapid
withdrawal of the roughly 140,000 U.S. troops now in
Iraq. To the contrary, he suggested that Mr. Bush was
more likely to do so, saying "I've heard [it] said by
many people" that the White House might be gearing up
to withdraw troops before the November election.
"I'm prepared for any political move" on Iraq, Mr.
Kerry said. "I'd put nothing past them."
White House spokeswoman Suzy DeFrancis promptly
dismissed that possibility. "The troop levels in Iraq
have always been guided by what commanders in the
field have said is necessary to accomplish the
mission," she said. "No other factor would enter into
Looking weary from the campaign sprint since he named
North Carolina Sen. John Edwards as his running mate
last week, Mr. Kerry said he doesn't contemplate "an
open-ended commitment" of U.S. troops. But nor would
he pledge to end the U.S. presence in Iraq, even by
the end of his first term.
"At the end of my first term I would consider it a
failure of my diplomacy if we haven't reduced the
number significantly," Mr. Kerry said. But "I
certainly can't tell you numbers. ... The key at this
point is to have a stable, nonfailed state that is
moving toward democracy and has security sufficient
for the government to stand on its own."
Kerry senior foreign-policy adviser James P. Rubin
said the three-part test the candidate articulated was
more specific than his previous admonitions that
American troops couldn't leave until Iraq had become
more stable and secure. Mr. Rubin noted that some
portion of the U.S. troop deployment might be able to
return home as Iraq moves closer to meeting Mr.
Kerry's conditions. But Mr. Kerry declined to spell
out the benchmarks that he would use to measure
conditions in Iraq, or specify any incremental troop
reductions along the way.
"I have a plan for how we can get there" by enlisting
greater international support, Mr. Kerry said aboard
his campaign plane. "I'm not going to negotiate my
plan in the newspapers. But I will get there in ways
that this president can't because he has burned the
bridges of credibility and burned the alliances. They
need to be re-established with ... a new president."
The issue of Iraq has posed a challenge for Mr. Kerry
throughout his campaign. In the fall of 2002 he voted
with a Senate majority to give President Bush
authority to go to war to remove Saddam Hussein.
Later, as war opponent Howard Dean shot to the front
of the Democratic nomination race, Mr. Kerry was
thrown on the defensive and criticized Mr. Bush for
misusing the authority he obtained to use force. Late
last year Mr. Kerry voted against legislation to
satisfy the president's request for an additional $87
billion in war-related spending -- a vote that Mr.
Bush and his campaign have harshly criticized in
But as he prepares for a convention that his campaign
wants to use to introduce him more fully to the
American public, Mr. Kerry is determined to present
himself as a leader of strength, one who would more
effectively pursue the same goals Mr. Bush has
established for progress in Iraq and the broader
anti-terror war. Instead of acting promptly to reduce
troop strength, he said he would consult with military
commanders to determine how many more troops might be
needed in the near term to safeguard Iraq.
"I know how to do that," said Mr. Kerry, a Vietnam
veteran who has previously accused the president of
insufficiently taking the needs of U.S. troops into
account. "I think I'll do that more effectively than
this president, and I'll ... listen to them with
greater respect than this president and this secretary
of defense did."
Derided by the Bush team as a flip-flopping
legislator, he made the same charge about shifts in
the president's position following the failure to find
weapons of mass destruction, among other setbacks.
"I don't trust this administration's definition of
where they're going or what they're going to do," he
said. "They've already shifted everything. They
shifted the reason for the war. They're capable of
Write to John Harwood at john.harwood at wsj.com and
Jacob M. Schlesinger at jacob.schlesinger at wsj.com
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