Tuesday, May 25

Bush's Words Ring Hollow

The LA Times reacts...

Speeches Aren't Enough

May 25, 2004

It was a subdued President Bush who on Monday tried to describe a path out of the increasingly beleaguered Iraq occupation. He acknowledged that violence would probably worsen even after the hand-over of what he called "full sovereignty" to Iraq on June 30. Hope was more evident than confidence, with much of the burden for that hope laid on the United Nations' ability to form a credible new government. But as he spoke to the Army War College in Carlisle, Pa., the president could not spell out the U.N.'s role.

The words "terror" and "terrorists" were used throughout the speech. Bush could be right that abandoning Iraq would leave it to become a permanent center of terror, but it was not to root out terror in Iraq that the U.S. went to war; Iraqi terrorism there from other than Saddam Hussein came with the war. It was weapons of mass destruction that formed the basis for the invasion, and much of the evidence was from exile leader Ahmad Chalabi's Iraqi National Congress.[...]

Bush said Monday, "We did not seek this war on terror, but this is the world as we find it." Had Chalabi's bogus evidence not been sought quite so hard, had he been taken as found, he might have been seen as the poseur and con artist that he is now accused of being. The war, however, cannot be undone.

Bush has promised more speeches. If he wants the confidence of Americans and Iraqis, more answers and more-specific plans are necessary.
Since Bush mentioned the possibility of more violence before and after June 30th (that's nailing it, huh?), the mindset just staggered me. By predicting violence, he's actually trying to absolve himself of any blame when/if it does happen.

I'm sorry. I want my president to PREVENT violence, not predict it. One is a weaker challenge. The other is a sign of knowing what your doing.