This Op-Ed piece published on the Brandenton Herald's web site, titled Chaos? It's here, takes President Bush to task over his veto earlier this week of the Iraq funding bill.
President Bush justified his veto of Congress' war spending bill Tuesday by saying that the timed withdrawal from Iraq demanded by lawmakers could lead to a "cauldron of chaos" in the Middle East.
What, we wonder, does he call the current situation? A review of headlines from just the past week reflects conditions that perfectly fit any reasonable definition of chaos:
The United Nations Assistance Mission for Iraq issued a report last week that described a "rapidly worsening humanitarian crisis" in Iraq and a "breakdown in law and order.
A report by the Office of the Special Inspector General for Iraq Reconstruction said that seven out of eight reconstruction projects declared successful by the United States were actually failures, with widespread corruption among Iraqi officials a major factor.
The State Department reported that terrorist attacks worldwide in 2006 were up by 28.5 percent over '05, with 14,338 attacks claiming 20,500 lives, most of them in Iraq and Afghanistan
The month of April was the sixth-deadliest of the four-year-long war for U.S. forces, with 104 combat deaths. That was the fifth consecutive month in which the U.S. casualty toll exceeded 80.
An active-duty Army office issued a scathing critique of his superior officers' handling of the war, an almost unprecedented show of opposition that reflects what the majority of Americans believe.
And yet the president insists on open-ended continuance of this disastrous military operation that has cost more than 3,200 American lives and $400 billion of its treasure. Already the timetable for the "surge" of U.S. forces that was supposed to produce a dramatic improvement in security by this fall has been pushed far into 2008, further weakening an Army already described as "broken" by many retired generals and concerned members of Congress.
For what? Supposedly to buy time for the government of President Nouri al-Maliki to take charge. The prospects for that happening are quite dim.
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