As I have written, the Obama/Hillary Clinton cover story that Iraq wouldn’t let troops stay behind (or even more outlandishly that the George W. Bush administration put Bush’s successor in a position where the United States “had” to get out) is at odds with reality.
A reader points out the Obama/Clinton cover story was recently blown up by Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.). Graham, along with Sens. John McCain (R-Ariz.) and Joe Lieberman (I-Conn.), had gone to Iraq on behalf of the administration trying to secure a stay-behind force. Take three minutes to listen to Graham’s blow-by-blow account. Three things are clear:
- The principal Iraq leaders all agreed to a stay-behind force and warned the administration not to bring the issue up with its parliament.
- When Graham asked Gen. [Martin] Dempsey in the discussion how many forces we would have, he had no clear answer.
- The number of troops was reduced not by Iraq, but by the White House.
Obama then insisted he had to go to parliament and without its approval (which wasn’t forthcoming) it was impossible to leave troops — any number — behind. In all of this, Graham points out that the administration “got the answer they wanted.” Remember this was a campaign promise — to get all the troops out. Obama was to run for reelection as the guy who ended wars and had decimated al-Qaeda. (Recently Obama decided — with his policy in shambles — that parliament didn’t need to vote on an immunity deal for our 300 advisers.)
If conservatives are certain – with much justification – that the administration seized on an anti-Muslim video in connection with the Benghazi, Libya, attack to avoid upsetting their pre-election line that al-Qaeda was “dead” (and G.M. was alive), consider how much more important it is for them now to concoct and stick with a cover story for the collapse of Iraq and the exact disaster administration critics predicted.
The problem isn’t so much that the Obama-Clinton crowd lies (although that is deplorable). It is that they are forced to lie because their entire national security approach has been a disaster and has endangered Americans. “The Iraqis did it” or “Bush did it” in connection with the troop withdrawal from Iraq is the equivalent of “the video did it” in the context of Benghazi.
The next interviewer who gets Clinton would be wise to push her on this topic. Our current security dilemma directly flows from this set of events. The woman at the center of this foreign policy debacle is now, by all accounts, misrepresenting the facts to hide her own and her boss’s incompetence. They let ideology and domestic politics run the show. A national security disaster ensued. Now it’s time to hold them accountable.