'Scouting' the Hill on Iraq
National security adviser Stephen J. Hadley visited Capitol Hill just before Congress adjourned for the Fourth of July. Meetings with a half-dozen senior Republican senators were clearly intended to extinguish fires set by Sen. Richard Lugar's unexpected break from President Bush's Iraq policy. They failed.Even the Republicans and Count Novak realize how out of touch the administration is and how they will stoop to any level to avoid blame for the debacle they created in Iraq.
Hadley called his expedition a "scouting trip," leading one senator to ask what he was seeking. It was not advice on how to escape from Iraq. Instead, Hadley appeared interested in how previous supporters of Bush's course had drifted away. In the process, though, he planted seeds of concern. Some senators were left with the impression that the White House still does not recognize the scope of the Iraq dilemma. Worse yet, they see the president running out the clock until April, when a depleted U.S. military can be blamed for the fiasco.
Based on what Hadley said, one senator concluded that "they just do not recognize the depth of the difficulty they are in." That difficulty entails running out of troops in nine months. Hadley increased latent fears of the U.S. military being made the fall guy -- a concern shared by many retired and some active senior officers, including a current infantry division commander.After destroying the military over the last five years the cowardly Bush administration will now blame that same military for the loss in Iraq. There are simply no words for how low this administration is.
The White House denies there is even a debate. That must make the Republicans feel secure.