Saturday, September 08, 2007

A Bipartisan Push for Peace in Iraq

In a moment out of distant American history when politics was supposed to stop at the water’s edge, the Bush Administration’s Ambassador to Iraq and a Democratic candidate for President in ’08 joined this week in prodding Shiites and Sunnis to stop squabbling and make peace.

Ryan Crocker and Sen. Joe Biden accompanied top deputies of Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki on a trip to the Sunni bastion of Anbar Province to pledge more than $120 million in reconstruction money as a step toward political reconciliation.

Crocker pointed out that “Anbaris, the Iraqis, and the coalition have [pushed] Al Qaeda out to the extent that a conference [can be] held that doesn't even talk about security...That's really significant."

Biden was less enthusiastic but encouraged reconciliation. "If you continue,” he said, “we will continue to send you our sons and our daughters to shed their blood with you and for you...If you decide you cannot live together, let us know.... we can say goodbye now."

Perhaps as significant as the meeting of Iraqi factions was the joint effort by a Republican official and a Democratic critic. If that spirit is contagious, it may even be possible for Congress to agree on how to end the war. But then again they are on this side of the water’s edge.


Mike said...

Joe Biden is a Democratic critic of what? The Iraq invasion or how the occupation of Iraq has been waged? As I recall, and correct me if I'm wrong, he did not oppose the invasion.
And the invasion was illegal and immoral.
And anyone could have seen that it was illegal before it happened. It violated the UN Charter and shattered a system on which so many had pinned hopes following the bloody Second World War.
So the appearance of Joe Biden with a Shrub administration water-carrier really isn't all that significant, if you ask me. He's a critic, but not the right kind of critic.

Unknown said...

The partition is well under way. Note the reference to "Anbaris" and Iraqis. As though they are separate groups. Crocker is signaling a willingness to abandon the long hard slog of Iraqi unity.

Mike said...

Mr. Stein, may I direct your attention to Biden's remarks on Meet The Press today? He is saying what the Repubs are saying against setting a timetable for ending the occupation and using the power of the purse to get the president to commit to getting US troops out of Iraq. Some "critic."