The Handwriting on the Wall Is Written in Blood

By Scott Galindez

t r u t h o u t | Perspective

Monday 28 May 2007

"I think the handwriting is on the wall that we are going in a different direction in the fall."

"We can no longer support an endless occupation in Iraq and Afghanistan."

The quotes above are not from anti-war Democrats. No, it's not Rep. Ron Paul (R-Texas) or Sen. Chuck Hagel (R-Nebraska). These quotes come from Senators Mitch McConnell (R-Kentucky) and Jeff Sessions (R-Alabama).

Is this just another fake moving of the goal posts? Or is it a sign of a major sea change to come from the Republicans in Congress? We have been hearing for months that many Republicans are only giving the "surge" until September, and then they will be looking for a "new strategy." I have to ask, Senator McConnell, if the handwriting is on the wall, then why wait until September? How many more American troops and Iraqis will die for a policy that you already know is failed?

This Memorial Day, nearly 1,000 more families will be visiting the graves of American soldiers killed in Iraq than a year ago. With death tolls over 100 for the last few months, I have to ask if over 400 new lives should be sacrificed, if the handwriting is already on the wall?

The handwriting that is on the wall is being written in the blood on the hands of those who continue to support funding for this war.

If Senator McConnell thinks the handwriting is already on the wall, why didn't he support an override of the president's veto of the Iraq supplemental, which included a timeline for withdrawal from Iraq?

If Senator Sessions believes that we cannot support an endless occupation, then why doesn't he support timelines for withdrawal?

When Senator McConnell next speaks to the troops or the families of those serving in Iraq, I challenge him to explain to them why the direction is not changing today, and why their their loved ones should fight between now and September.

While many Americans are frustrated that the Democrats have not done more, the bottom line is that the Republicans in Congress have blocked every attempt to force Bush's hand. The Democrats should not be let off the hook, but the recent votes have shown that if they had the power, they would end the war. It is the Republicans who are voting against their conscience to support the president - not to support the troops.