Someone should remind John Murtha (D-PA) that he’s not the Commander in Chief of the US military, as he’s on a one-man mission to force the US to surrender in Iraq. Not only is it borderline treason to attempt to deliberately hamper the mission of our troops abroad, but Murtha is essentially attempting to wrest control of the war powers placed deliberately in the hands of the Executive by the Founding Fathers.
Even The Washington Post, the nominal voice of the Washington establishment has taken Murtha out to the woodshed for his overreach:
Mr. Murtha has a different idea. He would stop the surge by crudely hamstringing the ability of military commanders to deploy troops. In an interview carried Thursday by the Web site MoveCongress.org, Mr. Murtha said he would attach language to a war funding bill that would prohibit the redeployment of units that have been at home for less than a year, stop the extension of tours beyond 12 months, and prohibit units from shipping out if they do not train with all of their equipment. His aim, he made clear, is not to improve readiness but to “stop the surge.” So why not straightforwardly strip the money out of the appropriations bill — an action Congress is clearly empowered to take — rather than try to micromanage the Army in a way that may be unconstitutional? Because, Mr. Murtha said, it will deflect accusations that he is trying to do what he is trying to do. “What we are saying will be very hard to find fault with,” he said.
Mr. Murtha’s cynicism is matched by an alarming ignorance about conditions in Iraq. He continues to insist that Iraq “would be more stable with us out of there,” in spite of the consensus of U.S. intelligence agencies that early withdrawal would produce “massive civilian casualties.” He says he wants to force the administration to “bulldoze” the Abu Ghraib prison, even though it was emptied of prisoners and turned over to the Iraqi government last year. He wants to “get our troops out of the Green Zone” because “they are living in Saddam Hussein’s palace”; could he be unaware that the zone’s primary occupants are the Iraqi government and the U.S. Embassy?
The idea that a member of Congress representing one district should be able to steer the course of American military policy is abhorrent to the Constitution. Congress does have the power of the purse, but with that power comes the responsibility to use it wisely.
What Congressional Democrats are essentially doing is selling our troops short, and it is absolutely reprehensible.
What makes it even more reprehensible is that Congress doesn’t have the integrity to even admit the reality of what the radical left is trying to do — Murtha is forced to play games with the lives of our troops in order to ensure failure in Iraq.
The purpose of this is to destroy the Bush Administration — the reality is that a failure in Iraq would create a humanitarian disaster of nightmare scale, set a precedent that would be deeply destructive to the American military, and also ensure that future Presidents — Democrat or Republican — can see their ability to conduct American military policy sacrificed on the altar of political expediency at any time.
What is happening now presents a serious crisis to the American system of government, and the blindly partisan Democrats are too focused on their own petty political interests to understand the ramifications of their actions. Indeed, Rep. Murtha seems to be dangerously uninformed about the situation in Iraq. Is he truly so foolish as to believe that Iraq would be better off were the US to leave?
The future of this country cannot be sacrificed on the altar of political expediency — and Murtha must be reigned in before his crusade ends up undermining US policy for years to come.