On Cheney and the British Withdrawal

February 21, 2007 at 1:35 pm | Posted in American politics, Cheney, Great Britain, Iraq, Military, Tony Blair | Leave a comment

Dick Cheney, the Bush administration’s worst liar, is claiming that the British are leaving because of the success they have had down in the south. Fine, okay, but as one reader on Talking Points Memo mentions, shouldn’t the British, instead of leaving Iraq, be used instead in areas where things are not going so swimmingly?

Josh, one of the arguments made by Cheney in the interview (and others such as John Howard) is that the British withdrawal is good news because it reflects improvement in the situation in the South. Well, if this is the case, then why aren’t the British troops being moved to where they are needed instead of being withdrawn? Why is nobody asking this question?

Truly, while America is escalating its forces in Baghdad, the British are leaving. Why is the Bush administration not asking the British to assist in Baghdad as well? Why are they not calling the British for what they are, “cut and runners.”

You keep hearing from right wing fools like Max Boot, Jonah Goldberg, Fred Kagan, that this is the “decisive conflict of our generation.” If that really is the case, why not harp on the British for leaving at such a critical juncture? Plus was it not Tony Blair himself who just recently said that to leave Iraq would send the wrong message to the enemy?

“If we desert the Iraqi government now, at the very time when they are building up their forces … it would be a gross dereliction of our duty,” he said.

“If we got out now, when the job wasn’t done, and simply deserted the situation, what good would that do other than to make sure that those people that support these extremists right around the world would take heart from it?” he added.

And just last month:

“For us to set an arbitrary timetable . . . would send the most disastrous signal to the people whom we are fighting in Iraq,” he said. “It is a policy that, whatever its superficial attractions may be, is deeply irresponsible.”

So what changed Mr. Blair? Just today you say the following:

“The next chapter in Basra’s history will be written by Iraqis,” Blair said.

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