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Retired General to Bush: Sign the Bill Congress has Sent

by Pamela Leavey

It’s clear that Bush has very little support from the American public for his planned veto of the Iraq spending bill and in fact the Bush Administration is even scaling back talk of success in Iraq. But, now comes news, not surprising at all, that a retired general, “who served as the Army’s top intelligence officer and headed the National Security Agency during the Reagan administration” is speaking out and advising Bush to sign the bill.

Retired Army Lt. Gen. William Odom said today that “President Bush should sign legislation starting the withdrawal of U.S. troops from Iraq on Oct. 1.”

“I hope the president seizes this moment for a basic change in course and signs the bill Congress has sent him,” Odom said, delivering the Democrats’ weekly radio address.

Odom, delivered the Democratic Radio Address at the request of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. He said that he “has never been a Democrat or a Republican.”

The general accused Bush of squandering U.S. lives and helping Iran and al-Qaida when he invaded Iraq.

“The challenge we face today is not how to win in Iraq; it is how to recover from a strategic mistake: invading Iraq in the first place,” he said. “The president has let (the Iraq war) proceed on automatic pilot, making no corrections in the face of accumulating evidence that his strategy is failing and cannot be rescued. He lets the United States fly further and further into trouble, squandering its influence, money and blood, facilitating the gains of our enemies.”

Odom said he doesn’t favor congressional involvement in the execution of foreign and military policy, but argued that Bush had been derelict in his responsibilities. This week Congress passed an Iraq war spending bill that would require Bush to begin withdrawing troops from Iraq on Oct. 1.

The rosy picture of Iraq that BushCo tries to paint isn’t working. As reported today in the N.Y. Times today, “the Bush Administration will not try to assess whether the troop increase in Iraq is producing signs of political progress or greater security until September, and many of Mr. Bush’s top advisers now anticipate that any gains by then will be limited, according to senior administration officials.”

Just how bad is it? Here’s the latest Iraq news: Car bomb kills 55 in Iraq’s Kerbala.

The full transcript of General Odom’s Democratic Radio Address and an audio are available here.

2 Responses to “Retired General to Bush: Sign the Bill Congress has Sent”

  1. Well, the general can just keep on hopeing that, “the president seizes this moment for a basic change.” People in hell likely hope for ice water. In both cases, it ain’t going to happen. When Bush went on record and labeled himself “The Decider”, he meant it!
    Much more scary to me tham not listening to reason about Iraq, is the manner in which this administration has openly changed our democratic form of government into a monarchy (dictatorship) over the last 6.5
    years. Bush and his cronies have openly and skillfully destroyed our Constitution’s established system of checks and balances.
    1. His appointments to the Supreme Court have
    tilted the balance to right wing
    conservatives. His selections were pushed
    down the throats of legislature with
    little resistence since the GOP was then
    in the majority.
    2. In public pronouncements, he has
    repeatedly expressed distain for any in
    the legislature that would challenge his
    absolute authority. His upcoming veto of
    their Iraq War resolution is just one
    more example of his total arrogance.
    King George often characterizes himself as being steadfast. However, he is actually stubborn and not steadfast. A person who is steadfast can keep their eye on the goal, while still incorporating alternative points of view. A steadfast person would realize that two plus two, as well as three plus one, both equal four. He is unable to compromise or incorporate suggestions from others to reach a mutually sought for goal. Our monarch’s stubborness allows for absolutely no wiggle room. It’s either my way or the highway. Thus, “The Decider”, who promised in 2000 to be a great uniter has managed to divide this country in a manner not witnessed since The Civil War. He admits to no mistakes and responds negatively to all crticism. Some manifistations would be:
    1. Unwillingness to react to the will of the
    U.S. electorate as expressed in the 2004
    federal election results.
    2. Unwillingness to react favorably to most
    of the suggestions of the Iraq Study Group
    3. Unwillingness to replace Alberto Gonzales,
    even with mounds of information that he
    acted less than ethicly. In fact Bush said
    he was very impressed with Gonzales’
    testimony before the Congressional
    Investigative Committee. I guess he
    failed to note Gonzales responded, “I
    can’t remember” to 71 of the Senators
    4. Unwillingness to accept the advice of
    leading US generals that the course of the
    war needs to be changed ASAP.
    5. His unwillingness to accept the vivid
    account from his former CIA Director
    George Tenant, which documents the way
    this war was sold to the public based on
    stilted and misleading information.
    (as referred to in his new book)
    I could go on, but suffice it to say that King George has successfully orchastrated a change from democracy to dictatorship. The very type of democratic freedoms he says need to be provided to the people of Iraq are increasingly being denied to the citizenry here at home. Just think, he has brought about a total political coup without one bullet being fired. Yet, they tried to impeach President Clinton because of his ill-advised moral indiscreetion with Monica Lewinski. Go figure!

  2. “People in hell likely hope for ice water”

    Thanks Buzz. When I find myself worrying about where all this is going to lead us, it will add some much needed levity to my almost panic attacks….

    Maybe I will change it a little.

    When Bush gets to hell, he can hope for ice water for eternity.