Iowa Senator Tom Harkin says he’ll support both of the resolutions before the U.S. Senate today (Thursday) calling on President Bush to bring the troops home from Iraq. One plan would see the pullout within a year; the other calls for what’s called a “phased redeployment” but sets no specific date.
Harkin, a Democrat, says we need an exit strategy and both resolutions would offer that. Harkin says “The resolution I offered to get the troops out by the end of the year is more clear cut and more definitive but that’s not before us. I’ll be supporting both of them although I’m under no illusions, neither one will win because the Republicans will vote against them. Therefore, we will continue to pour more taxpayers’ money into Iraq and sadly, we’ll probably continue to lose more American lives and more American young men and women injured.”
Iowa Senator Chuck Grassley, a Republican, says he will -not- support the resolutions, saying it makes no sense to give our military plans to our enemies. Harkin says — our plan for Iraq is already clear. Harkin says “By staying, that means the factions in the Iraqi government have no incentive to work together to solve their problems. The generals have said over there it’s not a military solution, it’s a political one. On the one hand, they know our plans now: stay forever. That’s a recruiting tool for the insurgents.”
Harkin says he’ll back both resolutions today because “anything is better than what we’ve got going now.” Harkin says “There’s two things we’ve gotta’ look at here: we can have a time certain to get out of there, force the Iraqi government to solve its differences, or we can just stay and pay, and stay and pay, and stay and pay. That’s the choices we have.”
Grassley, meanwhile, says “The best way to win a war is to keep your opposition off guard, not know what your plans are, and the instrument of surprise is the best way to win. It’s just the opposite when you say that you’re going to pull out.”
Grassley says if a date of December 31st of 2006 were set in stone for the U.S. to leave Iraq, the insurgents would only have to hold out until then before launching an offensive that would bring civil war.