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Friday, August 04, 2006

Another Brick out of the Wall

Keith Schmitz
One by one the bricks are being kicked out of the wall of support for the Iraq ocupation.

This week grassroots groups in Glendale, Fox Point, Wauwatosa and South Milwaukee have delivered petitions to get their local ballots in November calling for troop withdrawal from Iraq. This is a lot of walking, indicating a lot of earnestness. Take it from me.

Critics may ask what good is this effort, but other things are happening. Democratic Congressional leaders have groped around and found their spines to call for a pullout. Hillary the Equivocator Clinton beat up on Donald Rumsfeld yesterday. GOP Congressmembers one by one are losing their pro-Iraq occupation grip. Even generals like Chair of the Joint Chief of Staff Peter Pace are grudgingly acceding that the Iraq civil war cauldron is starting to boil.

This occupation is clearly a mess and the costs are bleeding us white.
When we overwhelmingly passed our referendum calling for a pullout in Shorewood this April we thought we were among a small crowd but now the chorus is getting louder.

This is not cut and run.
The group in charge prides themselves as running government like a business, now it is time to act like one.

Here’s the deal. Make a plan. You don’t spend a single buck to do anything in business unless you have one and yet we are blowing hundreds of billions through a fire hose.

Quantify and define the conditions for withdrawal. Set a date for achieving those objectives and then determine the milestones on the way to that date. If we miss the deadlines then adjust the date and explain to the country why we are missing the deadlines.

Businesslike, no? The only problem is the American public is losing patience so rapidly that this kind of plan might not even happen and we will repeat Viet Nam by declaring victory and pulling the hell out.

Of course we will hear the usual cry that this is not supporting the troops. I have never gotten that logic. It's like saying let's support cows by making hamburgers. Some will say that letting the world know we have a plan will only cause the insurgents to lay low. What a pity. US soldiers not being killed.

The refusal to set up some kind of blueprint for withdrawal only tells the rest of us that perpetual war ala 1984 is really on the agenda. Convince us that we are wrong.

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