Share on Google Plus Share on Twitter Share on Facebook Share on LinkedIn Share on PInterest Share on Fark! Share on Reddit Share on StumbleUpon Tell A Friend

Printer Friendly Page Save As Favorite View Favorites (# of views)   No comments
OpEdNews Op Eds

Senate Passes $123 billion More for Iraq and Afghanistan Wars

By       Message Kevin Zeese     Permalink
      (Page 1 of 1 pages)
Related Topic(s): ; ; ; ; ; ; , Add Tags Add to My Group(s)

View Ratings | Rate It

opednews.com

Author 690
Become a Fan
  (61 fans)
- Advertisement -
Sets “Goal” of March Redeployment But Loopholes Ensure Tens of Thousands of Troops Will Remain

The Real Issue: Will Democrats Resuscitate Bush by Caving into His Veto or Continue to Challenge Him or Is Bush Lame or the Congress?

While the headlines will read that the Senate voted to withdraw U.S. troops in Iraq, the peace movement recognizes that the Senate bill will extend the war not end it.  The exit date in the bill is merely a goal for the removal of combat troops, and there are large loopholes that would allow a commander in chief to keep as many troops as s/he wants in Iraq.  The bill provides $123 billion to pay for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan – nearly $20 billion more requested by Bush.

- Advertisement -

The real issue now is whether the Democrats will cave into President Bush’s threatened veto by providing a funding bill with no exit requirements or whether they will challenge the president further.  If they cave they will have given Bush new life – he will no longer be a lame duck, but rather will remain “the decider.”  The Congress will be seen as a “lame Congress.”  How they respond will be determined after their April recess.

Many peace advocates held a demonstration shortly after the vote to protest the extension, rather than end of the war. The demonstration emphasized that the Democrats have the power to end the war and highlighted the deaths of U.S. soldiers and Iraqis with a series of gravestones and photos.  The Hill described the protest as an “occupation” of the Hart Senate office building. See citation below for full article and a link to a video of the protest.

The vote was mostly a party-line 51-47 vote.  Forty-eight Democrats and independent Bernard Sanders of Vermont were joined by two Republicans, Chuck Hagel of Nebraska and Gordon Smith of Oregon, in voting for the measure. Opposed were 46 Republicans and Connecticut independent-Democrat Joseph Lieberman. Senators Mike Enzi  (R-WY), and Tim Johnson (D-S.D.), did not vote.

Regarding getting out of Iraq the bill requires beginning redeployment 120 days after the bill’s passage and sets a goal – not a firm exit date – of withdrawal of combat troops by March 31, 2008.  Combat troops make up roughly half the troops in Iraq which are projected to peak at 171,000 when the president’s troop “surge” is completed. Thus, this could leave 80,000 non-combat troops in Iraq.  However, the bill allows combat troops to remain to protect Iraq’s borders, fight terrorists, and protect the Embassy among other purposes.  So, it is not clear how many troops will actually be withdrawn if the bill’s  “goal” is met.

- Advertisement -

The bill now goes to a conference committee with the House version and then to the White Hose for a promised veto.  The Congress will not respond to the veto until it returns from its April recess.

 

For More Information:

For video of the"occupation" of the Hart Building by William Hughes see http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4ttLP25VsSM

Chris Good, Protesters stage ‘occupation’ of Hart office building, March 29, 2007, see http://thehill.com/leading-the-news/protesters-stage-occupation-of-hart-office-building-2007-03-29.html. 
- Advertisement -

 

- Advertisement -

View Ratings | Rate It

http://www.ItsOurEconomy.us and http://www.ComeHomeAmerica.U
Kevin Zeese is co-chair of Come Home America, www.ComeHomeAmerica.US which seeks to end U.S. militarism and empire. He is also co-director of Its Our Economy, www.ItsOurEconomy.US which seeks to democratize the economy and give people greater (more...)
 

Share on Google Plus Submit to Twitter Add this Page to Facebook! Share on LinkedIn Pin It! Add this Page to Fark! Submit to Reddit Submit to Stumble Upon



Go To Commenting
/* The Petition Site */
The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of this website or its editors.

Writers Guidelines

Contact AuthorContact Author Contact EditorContact Editor Author PageView Authors' Articles
- Advertisement -

Most Popular Articles by this Author:     (View All Most Popular Articles by this Author)

Why I Was Among Eight Health Care Advocates to Get Arrested in the Senate Yesterday

The Seeds of Rebellion Are Taking Root, and Protests Against Injustices Are Blooming Across the Country

BREAKING NEWS: BIG BREAKTHROUGHS FOR SINGLE PAYER HEALTH CARE

Ron Paul Press Conference Unifies Third Party and Independent Candidates Around Four Key Positions

Paperless Electronic Voting Machines Flipping Votes from Obama to McCain in West Virginia

Max Baucus Should Not Be Deciding Health Care for America