Disclosure: I worked for the Lamont campaign doing web design and production and some writing for the official blog (from 9/5/06 to 11/07/06).

Saturday, September 23, 2006

 

No Accountability

If Sen. Lieberman were at all interested in accountability on Iraq, there is no reason his signature wouldn't also be on this letter sent from Sen. Clinton to the GAO this past week, calling for an investigation into what obviously went so terribly wrong with the Coalition Provisional Authority:

We write to you as members of Congress who are deeply concerned about our nation’s involvement in the war in Iraq. We believe that the seeds of today’s troubles were planted in 2002 and 2003 when the Administration failed to engage in planning for what could follow the conclusion of "major combat operations"; when it failed to send sufficient troops or properly equip them; when it failed to take the necessary steps to secure the peace; when it made the disastrous decision to disband the Iraqi Army; and when it apparently failed to ensure that we had the civilian personnel we needed on the ground in Iraq. On this last point, recent books and media accounts paint a highly disturbing picture about the hiring practices of the Department of Defense in staffing the Coalition Provisional Authority (CPA), the personnel choices made, and the designation of a number of positions as political rather than civil service slots. We would like to request a Government Accountability Office study to review and assess hiring practices of the Department of Defense for the CPA....

We believe that decisions made in the first year of the occupation of Iraq are having a very direct impact on the situation that our troops confront in Iraq today. This matter demands attention and accountability. With 147,000 troops in Iraq after three years of fighting, we face rising sectarian violence, a continuing insurgency, and an Iraqi government that has not yet risen to the immense task before it. In order to move forward, we must understand how we arrived at this point, therefore, we are asking you to examine the hiring practices and actions of the Department of Defense in 2003 and 2004 in staffing the CPA during that critical period and the consequences of those decisions.


Signed:

Richard J. Durbin
Member, Committee on Appropriations

Harry Reid
Democratic Leader of the U.S. Senate

Carl Levin
Ranking Member, Committee on Armed Services

Joseph Biden
Ranking Member, Committee on Foreign Relations

Edward Kennedy
Member, Committee on Armed Services

Barbara Boxer
Member, Committee on Foreign Relations

Hillary Rodham Clinton
Member, Committee on Armed Services

Frank R. Lautenberg
Member, Committee on Homeland Security and Government Affairs


Conspicuously absent?

The Ranking Member of the Homeland Security and Government Affairs Committee... Sen. Lieberman.

(As an aside, there is what promises to be a great book now out on the disastrous Young Republicans and crony convention that was the CPA by Rajiv Chandrasekaran, who adapted parts of it for this Washington Post piece last weekend.)
Comments:
"You go to war with the accountability you have, not the accountability you wish you had. No, wait, uh...demanding accountability at our nation's peril, erm...I was sick that day!"
 
This whole "RNC on the Euphrates" thing is actually very old news for those of us who get a lot of their news from the left blogosphere, but I've been resisting the more-far-left types in my peace group who claim that the Republicans knew from the beginning that the occupation of Iraq would be a complete CF.
Senator Lieberman could help me out here and explain how the Republicans were taken by surprise, how they were wrong-footed and caught off guard by the need to recruit a professional staff to handle Iraq after Baghdad fell.
Come on Senator Lieberman, what was the plan for what the US would do in Iraq after the statue of Saddam Hussein was toppled?
 
This is another bit of evidence that if Lieberman wins, even if he caucuses with the Democrats, he will be an impediment to any return to accountability. If the Democrats win back the Senate and allow Lieberman to chair the Homeland Security and Government Affairs Committee, he will continue to give the Bush administration a pass on everything they've done. No one will ever suffer any consequences for the collossal incompetence and corruption in Iraq, the American people will never know the details of what went on, and future administrations will feel safe in deceiving the public, mismanaging wars, and looting the treasury and passing it to cronies.
 
This letter is a fricken joke.

I'm all about accountability and I do think that if Bush hired people based personal relationships with them he should be called out for it.

But...

How about accountability for politicians who undermine the war effort here at home by not voting to fund it, or by saying (since the first boot hit the ground) that we are in a quagmire?

For the love of God, please don't tell me that the same people who said that the liberation of Iraq would be an excercise in futility are now saying that the going is too rough.

By the way, pay attention to the news. The Iraqi insurgents hardly target our soldiers at all anymore, they are too busy targeting civilians. That means that if we cut, run, and withdraw from Iraq now it wouldn't make hardly any difference at all, so why not stick around and keep an eye on things hmmm?
 
Dear Anonymous,

I can understand why you want to remain anonymous. First off, Operation Iraqi Liberation (OIL) was never about accountability or freedom or democracy or even WMDs or 9/11 (those were just the excuses used to push us into a preemptive war). It was about getting Saddam Hussein, whom Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld AND LIEBERMAN had targeted for removal by one means or another well before 9/11. Incidentally, they changed the code name for the war to Operation Iraqi Freedom because OIL was so transparently true, too.

Now, 3 and half years into a bloody, destructive, expensive AND IMMORAL war, Joe "Chickenhawk" Lieberman wants us to believe that he was really only for the war because otherwise the terrorists from there would attack us here. What utter bilge.
 
Anonymous, hmmm, how bout $7B per month price tag? how about not creating more terrorists in the arab world? how about not breaking our military for future measures? how about bringing home the National Guard troops to protect, defend, and support the homeland? how about FINDING BIN LADEN?

The title of this blog post says it all: NO ACCOUNTABILITY. And Lieberman/Bush/Cheney-lovers like anonymous (a Lieberman/Bush/Cheney Republican no doubt) here dont want accountability b/c they know that means the end of their sorry political careers that have provided the U.S.A. with nothing but a littany of Abu Ghraib-style horror stories, terrorizing the American people with propaganda, total indifference to securing America's Homeland by not moving on the 9/11 commission suggestions, and causing ruin to our economy the last 6 years. Thanks for nothing Joe.

Time for REAL leaders like Ned Lamont to stand up for the Democratic party and for the United States. And no, im not a paid blogger, lobbyist, staffer or anything like that. Im just a regular old Lamont supporter.
 
Anon, what good is it to stick around in Iraq and keep an eye on things if you are not helping with security and doing things that increase violence? It's a waste of US soldiers lives and taxpayers' money to sit in Iraq and watch a civil war unfold.
 
" . . . pay attention to the news. The Iraqi insurgents hardly target our soldiers any more . . ." I can't quickly find the news article, but I believe I read a mainstream article w/in the last few days reporting that attacks on US soldiers have been increasing.
 
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