Tuesday | March 18, 2003
Chickenhawks pile on Daschle
So Senate Minority Leader Tom Daschle, a Vietnam veteran, says:
I'm saddened, saddened that this president failed so miserably at diplomacy that we're now forced to war. Saddened that we have to give up one life because this president couldn't create the kind of diplomatic effort that was so critical for our country.Nothing there is untrue, nothing there is subversive, nothing there criticizing our troops. Nope, everything in that statement lays the blame for this war squarely where it belongs -- on Bush's shoulders. Every life that will be lost, regardless of national origin, will be on Bush's shoulders.
Yet the Chickenhawks are aghast:
I was disappointed to see Senate Minority Leader Tom Daschle's comments. Those comments may not undermine the president as he leads us into war, and they may not give comfort to our adversaries, but they come mighty close.Fleischer proved today that he's not completely idotic:
[Daschle's] essentially blaming President Bush for the fact that we may be on the verge of war.Cute about how we "may" be on the verge of war, but he finally got one right. Though I am wondering why the outrage. We wouldn't be in this situation if we had President Gore. Or President Clinton. Or President George Herbert Walker Bush.
Daschle responded the right way:
Well, I stand by my statement. I don't know that anyone in this country could view what we've seen so far as a diplomatic success. A diplomatic success is what we saw in 1991. A diplomatic success is getting a broad coalition of countries. We had nearly 20 countries in 1991. A diplomatic success is having 200,000 international troops present instead of the 225,000 U.S. troops, which are present today.Pelosi also didn't mince words:
In expressing his views, Tom Daschle is being patriotic. The Republican leaders are being partisan.Damn right. Isn't this wonderful? Democrats being Democrats. Would Gephardt have defended Daschle this strongly and unambiguously?
But ultimately, we cannot end this discussion without harkening to the Crown Prince of Hypcrosy, Tom DeLay, who today issued this press release:
House Majority Leader Tom DeLay (R- Texas) today expressed his lack of surprise at Senate Minority Leader Tom Daschle's (D-S.D.) second-guessing of our commander in chief on the eve of war with Iraq.But just four years ago, with a Clinton White House prosecuting a war against Serbia, DeLay played the role of "taxpayer-funded pundit" with gusto, even as US forces were engaged in combat operations:
"The administration's campaign has been a disaster. ... [It] escalated a guerrilla warfare into a real war, and the real losers are the Kosovars and innocent civilians."There's more, of course. But at the time, with Clinton in the White House, dissent was patriotic and the duty of all Republicans to advocate peace and diplomacy.
Sort of underscores Pelosi's comments, huh? GOP outrage is nothing more than rank partisanship.
Anyway, be sure to check out (or re-read) this Saletan piece from three weeks ago. Make sure you read to the end. It has renewed significance these days.Posted March 18, 2003 06:06 PM | Comments (59)