Sunday, January 14, 2007

Bush Challenges Critics to "Offer An Alternative"

CNN says: Bush: If you don't like my Iraq plan, tell me yours

TIME says: Bush Challenges Iraq Skeptics

Reuters says: Bush says critics must offer alternative
"We recognize that many members of Congress are skeptical," Bush said in his weekly radio address. "Members of Congress have a right to express their views, and express them forcefully."

"But those who refuse to give this plan a chance to work have an obligation to offer an alternative that has a better chance for success. To oppose everything while proposing nothing is irresponsible," he said.
Do any of these reports mention any of the reasonable alternatives that have been proposed -- again and again and again? Do any of them mention the best alternative of all, the one that expired when Bush decided to invade Iraq in the first place?

The people who argued against the war five years ago were right then, just as they are now, and the people who jumped up and down in glee over the war four years ago were out to lunch then just as many of them are still.

Nonetheless, serious people have done serious work, devising practical plans which could (or would) fare better than the current strategy, if the goal is to stabilize Iraq. Such plans include immediate full withdrawal, or a phased full withdrawal, with or without war crimes tribunals for Bush and Blair and Cheney and Wolfowitz ... Dumsfeld and Ashcroft and Rice and Powell and all their British counterparts.

But here's the thing: when Bush says nobody else has a plan, he means nobody else has a plan that will guarantee security and stability in Iraq, while granting permanent control of Iraq's oil fields to the big four oil companies.

Such a plan probably does not exist. And therein, from the Bush point of view, lies the great beauty of getting entangled. Now he can say to his critics: "You don't know how to fix it, so you have no right blaming me for breaking it."

It makes no sense, of course, but that's what passes for political discourse in 21st-century America.