[Marxism] Clinton to anti-war activists [and US majority]: 'I don't need you'

Ralph Johansen mdriscoll at earthlink.net
Sun Feb 25 10:39:16 MST 2007

*[*"If the most important thing to any of you is choosing someone who 
did not cast that vote or said his vote was a mistake, then there are 
others to choose from..."

*Clinton To Anti-War Voters: Bring It On*

*By Amy Goodman <http://www.alternet.org/authors/5721/>, King Features 
Syndicate <http://www.kingfeatures.com/>. Posted February 21, 2007 

Hillary Clinton is a once and future warrior. Campaign events in New 
Hampshire suggest the majority anti-war electorate has problems with her 
vote for the Iraq War and with her position on Iran.

On Feb. 10, New Hampshire resident Roger Tilton asked Sen. Clinton at a 
town-hall meeting: "I want to know if right here, right now, once and 
for all and without nuance, you can say that war authorization was a 

Clinton responded: "Well, I have said, and I will repeat it, that 
knowing what I know now, I never would have voted for it. ... The 
mistakes were made by this president who misled this country and this 
Congress into a war that should not have been waged."

A week later, in Dover, N.H., she dug in:

"If the most important thing to any of you is choosing someone who did 
not cast that vote or said his vote was a mistake, then there are others 
to choose from. But for me, the most important thing now is trying to 
end this war."

Her tough talk to anti-war voters is reminiscent of President Bush's 
taunt to the Iraqi insurgents: "Bring it on."

People's concerns about Clinton's Iraq War vote is of more than 
historical interest. History has a frightening way of repeating itself. 
Drop the "q," add an "n." Iran.

New Hampshire Peace Action director Anne Miller asked Clinton about her 
recent comments to AIPAC, the American Israel Public Affairs Committee. 
Clinton told AIPAC: "We cannot, we should not, we must not permit Iran 
to build or acquire nuclear weapons. And in dealing with this threat ... 
no option can be taken off the table."

Miller, who has visited Iran, expressed "deep concern ... that we have a 
Democratic presidential candidate who is a militarist of this nature and 
that she isn't coming out and saying we need strong diplomatic action 
with Iran, which is really the only answer."

Clinton continues to invoke the now largely discredited Bush 
administration claim that the government of Iran is supplying high-tech 
weaponry to Iraqi insurgents. Even Gen. Peter Pace, chairman of the 
Joint Chiefs of Staff, says there is no evidence of Iranian government 

Sen. Robert Byrd, D-W.Va., fought the resolution authorizing the use of 
force in Iraq. He said the president wants "to have the power to launch 
this nation into war without provocation and without clear evidence of 
an imminent attack on the United States, and we're going to be foolish 
enough to give it to him." Byrd seems to have known then what Clinton 
says she knows now. He called the resolution "dangerous" and a "blank 
check," and now, with more than 3,145 U.S. soldiers killed, and with 
Iraq War costs through 2008 projected at more than $1 trillion, it 
appears he was right.

Reps. Barbara Lee and Lynn Woolsey also seemed to know then what Clinton 
says she knows now. They were lauded by the 50 activists who, on Jan. 
30, 2007, occupied Clinton's Senate office, weaving a web with pink yarn 
"to symbolize the senator's web of deception and the innocent people -- 
Americans and Iraqis -- caught in it." Protesters have promised to 
"bird-dog" Clinton at all of her public appearances. These actions 
recall the student sit-in at Clinton's New York office on Oct. 10, 2002, 
while Clinton stood on the Senate floor and made her case for war.

Fully a year before she died, columnist and arch Bush critic Molly Ivins 
wrote: "Enough. Enough triangulation, calculation and equivocation. 
Enough clever straddling, enough not offending anyone. ... Sen. Clinton 
is apparently incapable of taking a clear stand on the war in Iraq, and 
that alone is enough to disqualify her."

And then there's Ralph Nader. He admits that there are good anti-war 
candidates, but that if Clinton wins the Democratic nomination, he would 
be more likely to run.

Sen. Clinton has drawn the line in the sand over Iraq. She will not 
admit that her vote to authorize Bush to use military force in a 
unilateral, unprovoked war based on lies was a mistake. She is open to a 
military strike on Iran. Her latest message to voters: "There are others 
to choose from." Anti-war voters already know that, and are lining up 
behind candidates Barack Obama, John Edwards, Dennis Kucinich and, 
perhaps before long, Ralph Nader.


*Hillary’s Calculations Add Up to War*

*By Robert Scheer <http://www.alternet.org/authors/2676/>, Truthdig 
<http://www.truthdig.com/>. Posted February 21, 2007 

Clinton refuses to admit her mistakes about Iraq and proceeds to make 
the same ones with Iran. Let's face it: No matter how much many of us 
who oppose the war in Iraq would also love to elect a female president, 
Hillary Clinton is not a peace candidate. She is an unrepentant hawk, à 
la Joe Lieberman. She believed invading Iraq was a good idea, all 
available evidence to the contrary, and she has, once again, made it 
clear that she still does.

"If the most important thing to any of you is choosing someone who did 
not cast a vote [to authorize the war] or has said his vote was a 
mistake, then there are others to choose from," she said in New 
Hampshire last week, confusing contempt for antiwar Americans -- now a 
majority -- with the courage of her indefensible conviction that she 
bears no responsibility for the humanitarian, economic and military 
disaster our occupation has wrought.

As a candidate for '08, Hillary clearly calculates that her war chest, 
star power, gender and pro-choice positions will be sufficient for her 
to triumph in the primaries, while being "tough," pro-military and 
"supporting our president" will secure her flank in the general election 
against those who would paint her as that horrible beast, "a liberal."

A winning strategy? That remains to be seen. It certainly does not bode 
well for the future of the nation, however, should it be. Consider the 
parallel case of President Lyndon Johnson, who can be heard on tapes of 
his White House conversations ruminating that he never believed in the 
Vietnam War and pursued it only to deny Barry Goldwater and the 
Republicans a winning campaign issue.

In fact, whether out of such callous political calculations or sincere 
beliefs, mindless militarism has been a bipartisan majority position in 
Washington for a half-century, and counting. With the end of the Cold 
War, its acolytes went searching for a new enemy to serve as a foil. 
When one emerged, those with aspirations to the presidency fell in line 
quite easily.

"Now, I believe the facts that have brought us to this fateful vote are 
not in doubt," New York Sen. Clinton stated in her October 2002 speech 
when voting to authorize a war the White House had already decided to 
launch for bogus reasons, and which Clinton dutifully endorsed. "In the 
four years since the inspectors left, intelligence reports show that 
Saddam Hussein has worked to rebuild his chemical and biological weapons 
stock, his missile delivery capability and his nuclear program. He has 
also given aid, comfort and sanctuary to terrorists, including al-Qaida 
members ..."

That none of this was true is now airily dismissed by Clinton as the 
result of her being misled by "false intelligence." Yet Clinton had to 
be aware that the case for Saddam's WMD and ties to al-Qaida was weak, 
when not obviously misrepresented. Surely she was in contact with the 
intelligence and diplomatic sources from her husband's administration 
who were telling anyone who would listen that the Bush team was obsessed 
with invading Iraq.

Leaving aside the absurdity that Democratic senators such as Clinton and 
'04 presidential candidate John Kerry didn't have the access and means 
to do the same basic fact-checking of Bush administration claims that 
independent journalists, intelligence analysts and published skeptics 
such as ex-arms inspector Scott Ritter undertook, how is it that they 
could have ignored the historical evidence that occupying Iraq with the 
vague goal of "fostering democracy" was a phenomenally dangerous 
endeavor? Had Clinton caught the "fever" for invading Iraq that 
Secretary of State Colin Powell attributed to Vice President Dick Cheney?

If not, Clinton certainly forgot her role as a senator to balance the 
power of the president, instead blindly following his lead: "I will take 
the president at his word that he will try hard to pass a U.N. 
resolution and will seek to avoid war, if at all possible," she said. 
Yet, when the president clearly broke his word five months later, 
blindsiding the U.N. inspectors on the ground in Iraq who had found no 
evidence of WMD, Clinton simply cheered him on.

No, Congress failed to take seriously the obligation built into its 
constitutionally mandated exclusive power to declare war, and Sen. 
Clinton's refusal to admit that is not a minor issue. This paired with 
her strident support, ever since the invasion of Iraq, for a huge 
increase in the standing army to fight other wars, including a possible 
confrontation with Iran, shows a fondness in Clinton for war and 
bullying adventurism that vastly overshadows her sensible stances on 
many domestic issues. As Barry Goldwater supporters stated in kicking 
off the Republican revolution, what we need is a choice, not an echo.

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