Wrong Questions, Right Time, Part 2.

Yesterday, I wrote about my hopes of a third way to extricate ourselves from Iraq. Rather than a “surge� or withdrawal by a certain date, we, instead, would focus on negotiations between the Shias and the Sunnis.
 
Today, I see this in Time:

Democrats on Capitol Hill hang on his every word, and Jim Webb doesn’t disappoint. His son was extended in Iraq for the surge, and his resolve to end a war that he opposed from the start is undisputed. He came from 33 points behind to win election in Virginia and tip control of the Senate to the Democrats—largely on the strength of his antiwar, tough-guy military credentials. Democrats owe him, and they trust him to help them find an honorable path out of Iraq.
 
But Webb doesn’t favor a timeline for withdrawal, as the Nancy Pelosi bill passed by the House on Friday proposes, or capping the number of troops in Iraq, as Hillary Clinton suggests. Webb wants a diplomatic solution, and he’s working with Republican Sen. Chuck Hagel, a fellow Vietnam veteran and a friend for 30 years, to come up with a bipartisan bill that would incorporate some of what he calls “the more workable points” from the House bill without unnecessarily tying the hands of the military. He wouldn’t say much about it—other than it’s a work in progress as the Democrats try to ratchet up pressure on President Bush to wind down the war.

Maybe there is hope.
 
“‘Moderate’ is not a 4-letter word.”

Author: GARY A. BUTTS

7 Comments

  1. Well, if Webb is counting on cooperation from Chuck (I want every senator to explain his position on the war) Hagel who then votes against cloture on a bill that would require just that, I’d say he’s wasting his time.

    Webb may well turn out to be lying about his opposition to the war, but in Hagel’s case it’s already been effectively confirmed.

    Talk is cheap Chuck, when you had a chance to actually make a difference, you hid.

  2. Webb seems very level headed, and he doesn’t have Pelosi’s baggage of needing to satisfy all the party factions.

    A bipartisan (Webb, Hagel) bill would be an ideal solution.

    Here’s hoping.

  3. Perhaps a Sunni – Shia negotiated settlement would be possible if the Sunni’s and Shia’s were monolithic blocks. They are not. Neither side has a leader with the power and legitimacy to strike a deal that the majority of their side will support.

  4. I’ve been a fan of Hagel, but Davebo is correct that he recently has not matched his blazing speeches with his votes regarding our exit strategy for Iraq. He seems to be straddling the issue and I’m not sure if its due to pressure from the WH or RNC. I also think there is more that meets the eye on his sudden “nonannouncement” last month. That was just out of character and rather bizarre.

  5. Hagel does seem to have been affected of late by Runningforpresidentulitis mittromnium but from what I’ve seen so far I’ve no doubt that Webb is a pretty straight shooter.

    And I certainly support any sane measures that will help end this destructive conflict.

    Best of luck to them both.

  6. I’ve never been very warm to the idea of just leaving Iraq

  7. ……Hmmm it posted without my finishing my thought….ok try to finish now….

    …..I’ve never been very warm to the idea of just leaving Iraq at the drop of a hat, unless greatly frustrated by inaction, or lack of thought from both sides of the aisle. A diplomatic solution is the only chance we’ve got, and it has to get going and soon or we’re going to be dealing with this mess forever. I wish Webb and Hagel luck with this idea, and hope it’s stupid-proof enough that all sides can get enough to agree on it (some are always going to be stupid so we can’t hope for all).

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