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Democrats call for Strategic Redeployment in Iraq
Congressional Democrats are working to put their stamp on this election. Last week they offered their New Direction agenda and a well-done video companion. Yesterday they offered a plan for strategic redeployment of our troops in Iraq, a plan clearly inspired by CAP's foreign policy work.
After the election we will look back at this decision to embrace "strategic redeployment" as one of the most critical decisions of the year. I argued against it on a recent television appearance. We know the Bush plan isn't working. That staying the course when the course is failing isn't a good plan. But is this strategic redeployment a better option? Or just an option? Whether this is good politics or not, are we ready to fight for this option on the world stage if we win back one of the Chambers? Are we ready to take responsibility at this moment for what will happen in Iraq when our troops begin to leave, as instability in the Middle East rises and the Iraqi Sunnis ask us to stay?
I wrote last week that I worried that the events in Lebanon had rendered obsolete the Democrats Iraq frame. After reading the Democrats Iraqi letter I still feel that way. That doesn't mean Democratic leaders aren't right about Iraq. It just means that Democrats have now joined this debate in a very specific way, in a time of profound transformation and confrontation in the Middle East, and will have to stand and defend a position that somehow seems a little more spring than fall.