Baseball Crank
Covering the Front and Back Pages of the Newspaper
January 10, 2007
WAR: Romney on Iraq

Mitt Romney's statement in advance of tonight's speech by the president mostly hits the right notes in supporting an increase in troops in Baghdad, although you can see him straining to both embrace and distance himself from the Bush Administration from the opening line: "I agree with the President: Our strategy in Iraq must change." But it also includes this head-scratcher: "Our military mission, for the first time, must include securing the civilian population from violence and terror."

Now, I understand the argument that we have not done that adequately, but does Romney really believe we have not even been trying to protect the civilian population of Iraq from violence and terror? What exactly does he think 130,000 soldiers have been doing there for three and a half years?

Posted by Baseball Crank at 9:21 AM | Politics 2008 • | War 2007-14 | Comments (11) | TrackBack (0)

That's more than a head-scratcher. That line practically eliminates him from being taken seriously at all.

Posted by: Mr. Furious at January 10, 2007 10:07 AM

I think he's referring to our tendency to take neighborhoods from the insurgents and then leave. That leaves the residents open to reprisals from any insurgents who return.

A lot of talk these days is about taking ground and holding it, so it doesn't seem to me he's saying anything wildly divergent from the current conventional wisdom.


Posted by: spongeworthy at January 10, 2007 1:06 PM

Wow, to bad this joker did not win the Dem senate nomination. Had he been elected he would have made a wonderful tagteam partner for Jim Webb.

Posted by: abe at January 10, 2007 3:32 PM

The really bad part is that he is portraying himself as the most Conservative candidate. We have to be able to do better or we are doomed to at least 4 years of liberal rule. It too Reagan over half of his time to recover from 4 years of Carter.

Posted by: maddirishman at January 10, 2007 4:37 PM

Hmm, if you think that's bad, check out Giuliani's no-comment from yesterday (see link).

(And before you kick at the source, they're quoting the NY Post.)

Posted by: Devin McCullen at January 10, 2007 5:44 PM

The only GOP 2008 choice with proven determination to win this thing is John McCain. As much as I disagree with him on a lot of issues (though not on the biggest bone of contention, immigration), McCain's the man.

Posted by: John Salmon at January 10, 2007 7:07 PM

John, no second act for Newt? I think McCain will be an interesting watch. He's the frontrunner, playing to GOP primary voters. As such I expect the once friendly media to tear into him.

Posted by: abe at January 10, 2007 10:25 PM

While extremely poorly phrased, Romney puts his finger on the nub of the matter. Our military in Iraq has to take on constabulary duties as part of its mission.

The New York Times this morning tells us that Bush is "flouting the advice of some of his own generals".

This is hardly suprising. The military, especially the Army, has alway considered police duty as outside its scope.

Romney's delivery makes him appear critical of Bush. His actual meaning puts him squarely in Bush's camp.

Posted by: Henry at January 11, 2007 10:28 AM

As I have stated before, if McCain in the nominee, I will be sitting this one out. No more pretenders, I want a Conservative and I don't care what party they are from.

Posted by: maddirishman at January 11, 2007 12:32 PM

This is from the President's "previous assumptions" board for his speech: "Region has a strategic interest in the stabilization of Iraq."

Wow. Can you say delusional? Every American, regardless of politics, should be afraid.

Posted by: AttorneySteve at January 11, 2007 2:49 PM

Mad, how would you feel about this ticket? Article is a good read, as well.

Posted by: abe at January 12, 2007 7:43 AM
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