If Baker's Commission Proposes Redeployment, Will Bush Call That "Flexible" Or "Cut And Run?"
A commission formed to assess the Iraq war and recommend a new course has "ruled out the prospect for victory,” according to draft policy options shared with the New York Sun by commission officials.
The 10-member commission — headed by former secretary of state for President George H.W. Bush, James Baker — is considering two option papers, “Stability First” and “Redeploy and Contain,” both of which rule out any prospect of making Iraq a stable democracy in the near term.
The “Redeploy and Contain” option calls for the phased withdrawal of American soldiers from Iraq, though the working groups have yet to say when and where those troops will go.
President Bush noted at his Wednesday press conference that he “supported the idea” of the so-called Iraq Study Group and that he “looks forward to listening” to the commission’s recommendations.
But how will he react if the commission favors phased redeployment?
Bush, during the same press conference, followed a recent line of logic from the conservatives: when Democrats discuss redeployment, conservatives quickly label it "cut and run." When the military or fellow Republicans suggest redeployment, no such label is given.
Americans saw this hypocritical stance come into play earlier this year, when Senate Republicans continued to blast legislation from Sens. Carl Levin (D-MI) and Jack Reed (D-RI) even after they knew about a similar gameplan from our top man in Iraq, Gen. George Casey. In August, Casey reaffirmed his belief that troop redeployment could begin in 2007 or 2008.
So it shouldn't be surprising that Bush on Wednesday said this:
BUSH: Well, they may not use cut and run, but they say date certain is when to get out, before the job is done. That is cut and run. Nobody has accused me of having a real sophisticated vocabulary, I understand that. And maybe their -- their words are more sophisticated than mine. But when you pull out before the job is done, that's cut and run as far as I'm concerned. And that's cut and run as far as most Americans are concerned.
But a minute later said this:
BUSH: Senator Warner said, if the plan isn't working, adjust. I agree completely. I haven't seen Baker's report yet, but one of the things I remind you of is that I don't hear those people saying get out before the job is done. They're saying, be flexible. And we are. ... And I trust General Casey. I find him to be one of the really competent, decent guys.
Crystal clear, right? I guess I don't understand Bush's less "sophisticated vocabulary."
On the face of it, it seems Bush is being hypocritical -- falsely portraying the Democrats as cowards, to trick a majority of Americans into voting against something they believe in.