December 03, 2005

Quick Query

I'm working on a post that attempts to sketch out the main political positions that have been staked out on Iraq of late. So far I've got: 1) Murtha/Pelosi wing (six months and we're out); 2) Carl Levin wing (timetables, but would stretch out past 6 months); 3) Warner wing (2006 will be a very, very important year!); 4) McCain wing (no end but victory and such...). Am I missing any major categories? And which one is Bush in, in the view of readers? I've got him somewhere in between 3 and 4, with Rumsfeld pulling him three-ward....

Posted by Gregory at December 3, 2005 06:58 PM | TrackBack (0)

I think a better breakdown would be the Chomskyites, the feckless (Kerry, Levin, Rockefeller, Murtha), the reluctant sceptics (Biden, Hegel, Powell, (now Rumsfeld?)) and the neocons. Where you start out seems to be a pretty good indicator of where you end up.

Posted by: wayne at December 3, 2005 08:58 PM | Permalink to this comment Permalink

And which one is Bush in, in the view of readers?

Category 5) Whatever position sells best for domestic political concerns. Hence, the source of empty rhetoric such as "stay the course" or Iraq as the "frontline" in the terror war. It does not reflect the any particular position except that motivated by an ear to the ground for domestic politics.

Which is why you wonder into which policy category you would fit the Bush policy. None, because it fundamentally is not a position motivated by policy concerns.

I would posit that when Bush decided to go to war with Iraq on 9/12, it was due to his belief as to the politcal advantages he would obtain as the "war president" -- adn that was his primary motivation in making his decision.

Posted by: dmbeaster at December 3, 2005 09:34 PM | Permalink to this comment Permalink

Bush is definitely in category 4.

I think there needs to be a category for "specific targets which trigger withdrawal (or a better description of Levin's position." The majority of Dems want to see *specific* targets set for progress, and withdrawal based on achieving those targets (e.g. withdraw 1000 US troops for every 3000 fully trained Iraq Battallions, and have a goal of 5000 fully trained Iraqi Troops each month. If the training goal is not met, or if the situation in Iraq continues to deteriorate, then US troops would not be withdrawn, but Bush would have to acknowledge that he has failed....)

BTW, I'm in group 0.5. Forget US air support, etc.

Posted by: lukasiak at December 3, 2005 10:32 PM | Permalink to this comment Permalink

I am a bit dubious about trying to nail down positions. In particular, much of what is going on is the Dems trying to put some real space between themselves and Bush, but without proposing a plan that would alienate the middle. This leads to a lot of meaningless rhetoric and vague proposals, as dmbeaster says. Hence the stress on a timetable as a miraculous solution, whereas I don't think it would make much of a difference one way or the other.

Posted by: Les Brunswick at December 4, 2005 02:02 AM | Permalink to this comment Permalink

are one and two that different? If you read the various Democrat plans, the idea is to have a timetable.

Or is the distinction not the timeline, per se, but the fact that one group feels that the presence of troops fuels the insurgency?

Obviously, those that believe that would want the troops out sooner than later, but it seems like a logical desire if you believe the initial claim.

Posted by: just me at December 4, 2005 06:44 AM | Permalink to this comment Permalink

What dmbeaster said.

Posted by: fling93 at December 6, 2005 12:34 AM | Permalink to this comment Permalink
Reviews of Belgravia Dispatch
--New York Times
"Must-read list"
--Washington Times
"Pompous Ass"
--an anonymous blogospheric commenter
Recent Entries
English Language Media
Foreign Affairs Commentariat
Non-English Language Press
U.S. Blogs
Think Tanks
Law & Finance
The City
Western Europe
United Kingdom
Central and Eastern Europe
East Asia
South Korea
Middle East
B.D. In the Press
Syndicate this site:


Powered by