Two weeks ago, congressional Democrats and Republicans extended unconditional support to Lt. Gen. David Petraeus, President Bush’s new commander in Iraq.
Petraeus impressed lawmakers with his counter-insurgency combat credentials. Most said the general is exactly what America needs to help stabilize and secure Iraq from extremist violence.
Petraeus will be in charge of a new military strategy by utilizing 21,500 new U.S. troops to support the Iraqi Army in disarming Shiite and Sunni militias.
Today, however, those same lawmakers that praised Petraeus are now working to deny the crucial funding the general needs for his troops to get the job done.
Sen. John Warner, R-Virginia, and a host of Democrats, including Majority Leader Harry Reid, Sen. Ted Kennedy and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, are working together to get approved a nonbinding resolution condemning Bush’s troop surge and the money required to support the mission.
The measure’s aim is to undermine Bush’s plan and to give cover to politicians who are war critics yet afraid of being labeled as opposing our troops overseas.
The resolution is nothing more than an incumbency-protection device, designed to take advantage of growing public dissatisfaction with the war.
The stakes are high in Iraq and our options are closing rapidly. Lt. Gen. Petraeus represents the best hope to achieve the desired results for America and the Iraqi people seeking government stability.
Congress shouldn’t be betraying Petraeus and our troops — or at least acting like they would if they could.
If pulling the plug on all U.S. military operations in Iraq is what Congress really wants, then lawmakers should do it — without proposing a mealy-mouthed resolution that is geared for campaign-trail appeal.
It’s the difference between courage and cowardice.