Get Ready For Republicans To Start Abandoning The War In Iraq

Richard Lugar and George Voinovich are prepping the way for the hammer to be dropped in Iraq,

“Republican support for the Iraq war is slipping by the day. After four years of combat and more than 3,560 U.S. deaths, two Republican senators previously reluctant to challenge President Bush on the war announced they could no longer support the deployment of 157,000 troops and asked the president to begin bringing them home.

“We must not abandon our mission, but we must begin a transition where the Iraqi government and its neighbors play a larger role in stabilizing Iraq,” Sen. George Voinovich, R-Ohio, wrote in a letter to Bush.

Voinovich, a member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, released his letter Tuesday–one day after Sen. Richard Lugar of Indiana, the panel’s top Republican, said in a floor speech that Bush’s strategy was not working.

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“The longer we delay the planning for a redeployment, the less likely it is to be successful,” said Lugar, who plans to meet later this week with Stephen Hadley, Bush’s national security adviser.

Lugar and Voinovich are not the first GOP members to call for U.S. troops to leave Iraq. Sens. Chuck Hagel of Nebraska, Olympia Snowe of Maine and Gordon Smith of Oregon made similar remarks earlier this year. But their public break is significant because it raises the possibility that Senate Democrats could muster the 60 votes needed to pass legislation that would call for Bush to bring troops home.”

Here’s the sad reality: The Democrats desperately want to see us fail in Iraq because they think they’ll benefit from it in 2008 and Republicans, in increasingly larger numbers, are losing faith in the war.

That’s partially because the American people are sick and tired of the war in Iraq and they just want it to go away. It’s also because so many Republicans have lost confidence in Bush. He has been unpopular for a long time and has proven to be totally incapable of making a case for the war to the American people. That has been the case for a while, but things have taken a turn for the worse of late. Bush has been allowing Iranians to murder US troops with impunity and the fact that he’s looking to close Gitmo shows his heart is no longer in the fight against terrorism. Moreover, the way he has handled the immigration debate has shown that he has terrible judgment, is incompetent, and can’t be trusted — and if it’s true when it comes to illegal immigration, unfortunately, it’s true about the war as well.

Personally, I think pulling out before the Iraqis are ready to handle their own security would be an enormous mistake that many Americans would come to greatly regret down the road. Now, if, as expected, we set a timeline, and pull out of Iraq, I hope I’m wrong and people like John Murtha are right. I hope everything works out peachy, the Iraqis hold it together, and things go better with us out of the way. However, I suspect that pulling out will lead to genocide, the end of democracy in Iraq, exploding oil prices, and I also expect it to be viewed as a major victory for Al-Qaeda that will eventually lead to more terrorist attacks against the US.

But, whether that’s the case or not, unfortunately, I think the political tide has irrevocably turned against Iraq, even amongst Republicans.

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