Patterico's Pontifications


General Petraeus and Senator Cornyn’s Petition (Updated)

Filed under: War — DRJ @ 1:47 pm

[Guest post by DRJ]

Today in Congress, General David Petraeus and Ambassador Ryan C. Crocker are testifying about Iraq and, at times, the hearing has been contentious:

“The senior commander of multinational forces in Iraq warned Congress Tuesday against removing “too many troops too quickly” and refused under stiff questioning to offer even an estimate of American force levels by the end of this year.

Those comments from Gen. David H. Petraeus were met by sharp criticism from a senior Democrat, Senator Carl Levin of Michigan, that the Bush administration had adopted “a war plan with no exit strategy.”

UPDATE: Here’s a link to General Petraeus’ opening statement. Michelle Malkin has more and a roundup of links.


In a related matter, I was pleasantly surprised to get an email from Texas Senator John Cornyn asking me to sign a petition supporting General David Petraeus:

“Today, General David Petraeus will update the U.S. Senate on the amazing work being done by our troops in Iraq.

You might remember the last time General Petraeus appeared before the committee he was met with outright hostility by Democrats and their third party attack dogs. The liberal left wing attack group even took out a full page ad in the New York Times calling him a traitor.

Democrats are hoping for more of the same this time around. Both Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama are actually taking time out from the campaign trail to make a rare appearance in Washington in an effort to score cheap political points with their liberal base.

Lets make sure this time is different.

Please sign this petition telling General Petraeus that we support the job that he and his troops are doing in Iraq.”

This strikes me as a simple, direct, and good thing to do. Thanks, Senator Cornyn.


27 Responses to “General Petraeus and Senator Cornyn’s Petition (Updated)”

  1. Huh… That’s odd… I’ve recieved no such notice from either of my Senators…

    Oh, wait, I’ve got Durbin and the Obama… Yeah, not shocked…

    The worthless fucks.

    Scott Jacobs (d3a6ec)

  2. Senator Levin, I don’t want an exit strategy. I want a victory strategy. I don’t want to know how we’re going to retreat. I want to know how we’re going to win.

    Steven Den Beste (99cfa1)

  3. Could the good Senator please tell us what our EXIT strategy is for Germany & Japan?

    Another Drew (f9dd2c)

  4. Scott – I disagree with part of your comment #1.
    They’re not worthless. They serve to constantly remind us of the accuracy of the link between “Democrat” and “Weak on Defense”.

    The other part I agree with.

    Apogee (366e8b)

  5. And this petition is going to do what? Let him know that X number of people support him? He’s a smart guy, I think he knows there are people in the country who support him, and I doubt he’s so insecure that his outlook on life or the job he is trying to do is going to change as a result of people signing this petition (‘Gee, I was going to throw in the towel, but now I won’t! Thanks, Senator Cornyn’). And he knows that this isn’t going to make his job or life any easier, for as my daddy used to say, this petition and $5 will get him a latte at Starbucks. And finally, he knows that whatever X adds up to, that there are many more people who wish Bush would pull the troops out now and let the Iraqis fend for themselves. Go ahead and sign it if it makes you feel better, just don’t think that it is going to matter or change anything…

    stevesturm (8caabf)

  6. If people believe in the war (personal choice) and in Gen. Petraeus’ leadership (they should) then what they should sign is an agreement to serve in the war. The petition is nice but I bet the General would feel more “supported” by more DO and less talk.

    EdWood (c2268a)

  7. stevesturm and EdWood,

    I agree that words of encouragement in a petition don’t matter much, but I think it’s important Petraeus knows that not everyone is part of the exit strategy crowd.

    DRJ (a431ca)

  8. DRJ: and you think he needs a petition to know that?

    stevesturm (8caabf)

  9. Does he need to hear it? No one needs to hear they are supported but it’s nice to hear it anyway.

    DRJ (a431ca)

  10. Betcha stevesturm and his ilk would never consider saying thank you to any of our military personnel because they “don’t need to be thanked”. . What horsecrap. After the General and Ambassador put up with questioning from intellectual midgets like Sen. Levin a “thank you” petition seems the least we can do.

    kyle (9c63f7)

  11. aren’t you exalting the lives of the sunnis and shiites you hope to save over the american soldiers you know will die?

    assistant devil's advocate (819485)

  12. ADA,

    Police officers and firemen die, too, but that doesn’t mean we’ve exalted the lives of the citizens they protect over theirs. It means they work in high-risk professions.

    DRJ (a431ca)

  13. american police officers and firemen die here in america to protect us, the citizens and taxpayers. from my unabashedly selfish, american perspective, you and i are worth protecting a little more than people in iraq who have hated each other for 1500 years. i’m not willing to sacrifice 1 american soldier to save 100 iraqis. i don’t see any return here commensurate with the blood and treasure we’re expending. my approach is actually the most conservative, from “conserve”.

    assistant devil's advocate (819485)

  14. You guys in America are blessed. As an observer all the way from Nigeria in west Africa I cant help but watch in wonderment and great admiration at your democracy. I think yours is the best in the world! Consider democracies in Africa, Nigeria to be precise, where there is no democracy, even though some might want to call it that. But when you look at your politics and see people actually engaging, having a say, you cant but wonder when it will be so for us. In America, people really have a say in who governs them. A politician knows the power of the people’s vote, so he works hard, doing everything in his power to keep his promise to the people who voted him into power. This puts a check on him, forcing him to be the best he can be. The power of the people’s vote puts him in a situation where he has to deliver or be voted out! that is the beauty of democracy, where it really works. The result is a progressive society where law and justice is enthroned. Infastructural development is on the increase, everyone is happy. Basic necessities of life- food, shelter, water, constant power supply, good roads and education are dividends of this working process. This is only possible because democracy is allowed to work and people are allowed to rule. But a situation where the politician those not feel any kind of indebtedness to the people he governs simply because he was not elected, he was selected, thrust upon the people forcefully, by the establishment or “Godfathers”. In that situation, what would be his motivation to do anything for the electorate? This is the bane of African democracies as we see in many african countries. Look at the disgrace we are seeing in Zimbabwe. Because the voice of the people means nothing, this 28 year old dictatorship is trying again to subvert the will of the majority and force himself on them, whether they want him or not. Compare that to your democracy and you will realise you all have alot to be thankfull for. Watching you guys exercising your democratic franchise in deciding who leads you in Nov. makes me ask, when will it be so in my country?

    love2008 (6e616b)

  15. We’re not protecting Iraqis. We’re protecting our children from an enemy who, if left unfought now, they might have to fight on the banks of the Mississippi instead of the banks of the Tigris.

    i don’t see any return here commensurate with the blood and treasure we’re expending.

    That is below you, ada. These things are not a matter of a banker’s ledger or a baker’s scales. Everybody loses in a war. The winner is the one who loses less.

    And I can’t resist:

    “I don’t have any enemies. I do not permit such a thing.” — Anton Chigurr

    nk (6b7d4f)

  16. ADA,

    The US military protects the homeland by working with (or against, as the case may be) foreign nations. We could use our military to surround America in an isolationist, defensive posture. Pearl Harbor taught Americans that isolation doesn’t work and forced us to engage with the rest of the world. 9/11 was America’s 60-year reminder that the lesson of Pearl Harbor still applies.

    DRJ (a431ca)

  17. Love2008,

    You wrote a beautiful testament to freedom and democracy. I wish I knew the answer to your heartfelt question, and I pray your hopes will be answered soon.

    DRJ (a431ca)

  18. Nk: I’m with ADA, for the most part our troops are not in Iraq fighting terrorists who otherwise would be coming to America, they’re playing buffer between warring factions of Iraqis who can’t stand the idea of sharing power and whose only beef with America is their perception that we’re helping the other side. They’re shooting at our guys because our guys are in the way of their going after they people they want to kill. Going after real terrorists (Al Qaeda) who want to kill Americans? Priceless. Having Americans die trying to keep Iraqis from killing each other? Stupidity and a waste of Americans who otherwise could be seeking out and killing those who want to harm us.

    DRJ: Pearl Harbor happened to us because we were isolationist? Silly me, I thought it was in large part because the Japanese wanted to deter us from getting involved (supporting the Chinese, cutting off oil supplies, etc.), that they wanted us to butt out of Asia. Oh well, that’s what I get for going to public school.

    stevesturm (8caabf)

  19. Pearl Harbor happened to us because we were isolationist? Silly me, I thought it was in large part because the Japanese wanted to deter us from getting involved (supporting the Chinese, cutting off oil supplies, etc.), that they wanted us to butt out of Asia.

    It was because they thought us weak. That we would not be willing or able to fight back. That we could not take an army of 37,000 and make it into an army of twenty million. That we would not think the “return … commensurate with the blood and treasure we [would be] expending”.

    nk (6b7d4f)

  20. we’re protecting our children from an enemy who, if left unfought now, might have to be fought on the banks of the mississippi instead of the banks of the tigris.

    i’m sorry nk, but that’s patently absurd. the private citizens living on the banks of the mississippi possess enough firepower to quell any sunni/shia insurgencies without having to call on the military.

    pearl harbor taught americans that isolationism doesn’t work…

    we knew who was responsible for pearl harbor, caught up with them in under four years, split some atoms in two of their major cities and forced them to unconditionally surrender. we had a clearly defined objective, and everyone could tell when we reached it.

    we know who was responsible for 9/11, but we aren’t even going after him anymore. we’re bogged down in a sectarian conflict that’s been going on for over six times the age of our own country. who do we force to unconditionally surrender so we can go home? osama bin laden isn’t going to surrender. if a hiroshima-sized nuke detonated in an unpopulated area of the pakistan border will guarantee his elimination and an end to the war the same day, i would look upon this option with favor. i’m unwilling to sign a blank check in american lives just to prevent muslims from killing other muslims for one day, let alone john mccain’s “100 years”. drj, are you willing to follow the pearl harbor analogy to its logical conclusion? are you willing to nuke osama bin laden’s general area? if not, you have to explain to us your faintness of heart in this context.

    this isn’t the pearl harbor class we’re being forced to retake in school, this is the vietnam class.

    assistant devil's advocate (819485)

  21. I’m willing to use nuclear weapons in this war, but I’m a Jacksonian. Every option is on the table with me.

    DRJ (a431ca)

  22. ada is one of those who stood aside when Hitler marched into the Saar; when, just saying no, could have obviated WW-2.

    His is an opinion that has no merit, or worth.

    Like another, they cannot grasp the concept of a forward defense, or flypaper.

    Another Drew (8018ee)

  23. drj, i salute your jacksonian perspective. i’m willing to nuke osama’s hideout and begin massive troop withdrawals from iraq the same day. let’s get a petition going for this!

    assistant devil's advocate (819485)

  24. Stopping Osama doesn’t resolve Iraq, but I like the way you brought this back to petitions. Good symmetry.

    DRJ (a431ca)

  25. I’m willing to use nuclear weapons in this war, but I’m a Jacksonian. Every option is on the table with me.

    Damnit, why must you be married!!!


    Scott Jacobs (d3a6ec)

  26. Scott,

    A gentleman does not inordinately express admiration for a married lady even if it is based solely on her character and intellect. “DRJ, I consider you a person of fine qualities and great charm” is sufficient.

    nk (6b7d4f)

  27. nk,

    I am afraid you have committed a common error…

    At what point did you start to think I was a gentleman? 🙂

    Scott Jacobs (d3a6ec)

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