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Quotes from when Clinton committed troops to Bosnia:

"You can support the troops but not the president."
--Rep Tom Delay (R-TX)

"Well, I just think it's a bad idea. What's going to happen is they're going to be over there for 10, 15, maybe 20 years."
--Joe Scarborough (R-FL)

"Explain to the mothers and fathers of American servicemen that may come home in body bags why their son or daughter have to give up their life?"
--Sean Hannity, Fox News, 4/6/99

"[The] President . . . is once again releasing American military might on a foreign country with an ill-defined objective and no exit strategy. He has yet to tell the Congress how much this operation will cost. And he has not informed our nation's armed forces about how long they will be away from home. These strikes do not make for a sound foreign policy."
--Sen. Rick Santorum (R-PA)

"American foreign policy is now one huge big mystery. Simply put, the administration is trying to lead the world with a feel-good foreign policy."
--Rep Tom Delay (R-TX)

"If we are going to commit American troops, we must be certain they have a clear mission, an achievable goal and an exit strategy."
--Karen Hughes, speaking on behalf of George W Bush

"I had doubts about the bombing campaign from the beginning . . I didn't think we had done enough in the diplomatic area."
--Senator Trent Lott (R-MS)

"I cannot support a failed foreign policy. History teaches us that it is often easier to make war than peace. This administration is just learning that lesson right now. The President began this mission with very vague objectives and lots of unanswered questions. A month later, these questions are still unanswered. There are no clarified rules of engagement. There is no timetable. There is no legitimate definition of victory. There is no contingency plan for mission creep. There is no clear funding program. There is no agenda to bolster our over-extended military. There is no explanation defining what vital national interests are at stake. There was no strategic plan for war when the President started this thing, and there still is no plan today"
--Rep Tom Delay (R-TX)

"Victory means exit strategy, and it's important for the President to explain to us what the exit strategy is."
--Governor George W. Bush (R-TX)

Funny thing is, we won that war without a single killed in action.

Originally posted to Daily Kos on Wed Aug 17, 2005 at 11:47 AM PDT.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Made me shed a tear (none)
    for the good old days.
    •  the good old days . . . (4.00)
      Whatever happened to the good old days when the Right totally lost their mind when Al Gore made a few campaign calls from the White House?

      Above the clouds, what's to be found, I have to wonder - will I be around--Paul Weller

      by Above the Clouds on Wed Aug 17, 2005 at 11:59:17 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  The good old days? (none)
      No US soldiers may have been killed, but the idea that this was a clean war is ridiculous and ignorant. I think we all at the very least can remember that wonderful footage of that bomb slamming into that bus full of people on the bridge over the Danube (I believe).

      http://www.warpoetry.co.uk/intro1.html

      In addition the bombing damaged or destroyed 144 major industrial plants including all Yugoslavia's oil refineries, fuel storage facilities, car and motorcycle factories, pharmaceutical and fertiliser factories, rubber factories. The bombing of some of these released large quantities of dangerous chemicals into the environment, created an oil slick on the Danube 20 kilometres long, and put 600,000 people out of work.

      Damaged or destroyed were several thousand homes (mainly in Belgrade, Nis, Cuprija, Aleksinac and Pristina), 33 clinics and hospitals, 340 schools, 55 road and rail bridges. The River Danube was blocked; some of the bridges were hundreds of miles from the scenes of the racial expulsions and were vital trade links to the rest of Europe. Also attacked were 12 railway lines, 5 civilian airports, 6 trunk roads, 10 TV and radio stations and 24 transmitters; power stations were put out of action; sewage treatment plants were damaged; water supplies were cut off.

      Five thousand civilians were injured; 1400 adult civilians were killed, 600 children were killed, 600 military and police personnel were killed.

  •  political amnesia (4.00)
    My, how Republicans suffer from political amnesia. My 82-year old grandmother with mild-to-moderate dementia can remember the past better than the GOP can . . .
    •  Almost like they all got hit (none)
      in the head with a brick.  Amnesia caused by severe head trauma, aka "Conservative's 9-11 syndrome".  They could convince millions of Americans that they had the best plan to fight against what we all "came aware of"--terror.  Now anything goes, including forgetting what they said as to appear more American than the next guy by "supporting" troops and the President.

      When do we send copies of these quotes to the press?  How about...

      Now.  

      click

  •  Dear Kos,.... (4.00)
    I love you man!

    Can someone dig up a 2000 campaign quote from W, about how he was against "nation-building"?

    If a Dem wants to be "good friends" with that hate-mongering liar, Sean Hannity, well, he deserves a primary. http://groups.yahoo.com/group/DumpJoe/

    by DeanFan84 on Wed Aug 17, 2005 at 11:50:56 AM PDT

    •  Here ya' go! (4.00)
      "Let me tell you what else I'm worried about: I'm worried about an opponent who uses nation building and the military in the same sentence. See, our view of the military is for our military to be properly prepared to fight and win war and, therefore, prevent war from happening in the first place."

      ~George W. Bush
      November 6, 2000
      Chattanooga, TN

      •  And what about Repub quotes against ... (4.00)
        ... Clinton attacking the Al Qaeda encampments in Afghanistan and Sudan. NYTimes provided administration spin today, concerning the State Dept. warning about Bin Laden being more dangerous in Afghanistan.

        It appears NYTimes wants to shift some blame away from Bush - yet Clinton attacked those encampments, probably missing Bin Laden by minutes. And was subsequently attacked by the Repub's for carrying out that attack.

        "I don't do quagmires, and my boss doesn't do nuance."

        by SteinL on Wed Aug 17, 2005 at 12:02:19 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Opposed Somalia intervention (4.00)
        "Somalia started off as a humanitarian mission then changed into a nation-building mission and that’s where the mission went wrong. The mission was changed. And as a result, our nation paid a price, and so I don’t think our troops ought to be used for what’s called nation building. I think our troops ought to be used to fight and win war. I think our troops ought to be used to help overthrow a dictator when it’s in our best interests. But in this case, it was a nation-building exercise."
        Source: Presidential Debate at Wake Forest University Oct 11, 2000

        http://www.issues2000.org/George_W__Bush_Defense.htm

        Can anyone tell me why my American flag was made in China?

        by Skid on Wed Aug 17, 2005 at 12:07:58 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  you guys are just not very understanding (none)
        In the neo-cons universe the mission was clear as was the exit strategy. It is just not working well in this universe.

        Change 10% of the electorate and we will have a landslide and a mandate.

        by Jlukes on Wed Aug 17, 2005 at 03:43:09 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Debate transcript (4.00)
      Here

      snip

      BUSH: Well, if it's in our vital national interests. And that means whether or not our territory -- our territory is threatened, our people could be harmed, whether or not our alliances -- our defense alliances are threatened, whether or not our friends in the Middle East are threatened. That would be a time to seriously consider the use of force.

      Secondly, whether or not the mission was clear, whether or not it was a clear understanding as to what the mission would be.

      Thirdly, whether or not we were prepared and trained to win, whether or not our forces were of high morale and high standing and well-equipped.

      And finally, whether or not there was an exit strategy.

      I would take the use of force very seriously. I would be guarded in my approach. I don't think we can be all things to all people in the world. I think we've got to be very careful when we commit our troops.

      The vice president and I have a disagreement about the use of troops. He believes in nation-building. I would be very careful about using our troops as nation builders.

      I donated to ePluribus Media. Support citizen journalism!

      by mlk on Wed Aug 17, 2005 at 11:55:53 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Bush vs. Bush (4.00)
      Far better than a mere text quotation, is the brilliant way John Stewart used a clip of it in this piece, one of my all time Daily Show favorites.
    •  Here's a video from the Daily Show (none)

      I'm a hustler, baby. I'm a shining star!
      www.buttermyself.com

      by buttermyself on Wed Aug 17, 2005 at 12:41:49 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Jeez (2.00)
    How many times do we have to repost and rehash the same diary?
  •  Whoa! (4.00)
    Thanks, Kos!  I needed this to throw back in the Repubs faces on another message board.  
  •  Would someone please!!! (4.00)
    Please!  I beg you!  Someone!  Can we get an ad with these statements running?  Please?  Moveon?  DLC?  DCCC?  Anyone?  

    For goodness sake people if we don't get the point across now, then we never will!

    •  It would be great if they had (4.00)
      videos of these comments being made.

      Play them without any references to Kosovo or Clinton so that it sounds like they are talking about Iraq.

      Then expose the context at the end and a voice over "how low will those radical republicans go?"

    •  What can we do to make this happen? Does (none)
      anyone know how to suggest this to MoveOn, et al? Who has influence?
    •  I'm very surprised Democrats haven't seized these (none)
      choice quotations. They are just too good to let them die.

      As usual, Dems are slow.

    •  Pointing out hypocricy is preaching to the choir (none)
      Mainstream America doesn't give a damn about intellectual dishonesty; in order to appreciate the dishonesty, they'd have to think about the war intellecutally.  And well, those who've done so are already on our side.

      Let's run against the war.  Let's offer an alternative to the current quagmire.  Let's attack Republicans on what they do, not what they say.  Pointing out gaffes and hypocritical comments may satisfy us intellectually, but it won't convince Americans that the Democrats are a viable electoral choice.

      •  Hell, let's do both! (none)
        Why limit ourselves?

        I think publicizing the painful particulars of the right's hypocrisy will, at the very least, help to grease the skids.  As more and more people are pried away from the right, these points will add a memorable spiciness to their disgust.

        Is it enough?  Of course not, not even close.  But running these statements is a great idea.  

        The public humiliation of Republican hypocrites is a civic duty.

  •  These can be the Good ol' days (4.00)
    if we can take these comments from the hypocrites and send them to the MSMs, newspapers, politicians and such. Make them eat their words (and crow)!

    Can anyone tell me why my American flag was made in China?

    by Skid on Wed Aug 17, 2005 at 11:53:23 AM PDT

  •  Media and politico failure (4.00)
    And it's a massive failure of the SCLM and today's crop of Democratic politicians that these quotes aren't being thrown in the Republicans' face, as well as the fact that we had no KIA in Bosnia.

    Imagine Reid or Waxman saying, "Well, in the words of Tom Delay, 'You can support the troops but not the president.'" That'd be marvelous, and it'll never fucking happen.

  •  lovely (4.00)
    Can you source them all?  Not that I doubt you or anything, but this would make a very useful pop quiz - complete with links to throw at the faces of the knee-jerk war 'supporters'
  •  Republicans are... (4.00)
    ... liars, cheats, and thieves.  But of course they're the party of traditional morality, too.  Hey, maybe that's it.  Their voters long for the protection of a feudal lord.

    Liberty and justice for all

    by lovable liberal on Wed Aug 17, 2005 at 11:54:51 AM PDT

  •  Kos you keep missing the point. (4.00)
    The man was getting blowjobs while running this country into peace and prosperity.  This is unacceptable behavior and the american people demand dignity and honor from the president.  Like you are seeing in Craw..I mean the White House today.
    •  who cares? (none)
      Will, I read your post and I have to comment. Listen, history has reported that the "favors" a president might receive while in office are numerous and often not things that the general public is drug in to. The Repubs. drug out whatever dirt they could find about Clinton and put it in th press and made it a national disater that he got a blowjob. Who Cares? Our economy was doing better than ever under Clinton's administration. No ONE was dying, least of all only members of the poor community, for any unnecessary wars. There were no war crimes committed and there were no administration members that were involved in TREASONOUS ACTS! So you tell me...why do I care if he got sexual favors in the White House?
  •  Questions for those quoted (4.00)
    1. Why did you want President Clinton to fail?
    2. Why did you want to negotiate with people who commit genocide?
    3. Yeah, and what's your exit strategy?

    Tables turned.

    Visit my blog Penndit.
    The Republicans' worst enemy is an informed electorate.

    by Newsie8200 on Wed Aug 17, 2005 at 11:55:36 AM PDT

  •  Whoa (4.00)
    I think you've got some quotes from Kosovo and the Iraq bombing in there.

    My favorite bullshit quote of the time, though, was when Pat Roberts, in saying he would vote to impeach Clinton, said:

    Last December, on the eve of the House impeachment vote, President Clinton ordered air strikes on Iraq. The result is murky at best, the reasons unclear.

    Each time the President has acted, charges of "wag the dog" have reverberated around the globe. Whether those charges are true or false is no longer material. What is material is that the President of the United States is not credible. He is not trusted. He cannot act in the best interest of America.

    He has lost the moral mantle of leadership.

    He has selfishly placed this nation in jeopardy.

    It is precisely this kind of situation, I am convinced, that worried America's founding fathers as they devised the impeachment mechanism to remove a sitting president whose actions endangered the republic.

    -Sen. Pat Roberts (R-KS)

    That's my asshole senator!

    It's all particularly interesting when you see this today.

  •  ah (4.00)
    what a fine list.

    It should be posted everywhere.

  •  Excellent! (4.00)
    Someone called in a bunch of these on the Ed Schultz Show yesterday and I was hoping to have a copy of them.  Thanks!  

    I totally agree with the comment from above, someone needs to get these into an ad so we can show them who the REAL flip-floppers are.

  •  Republicans... (4.00)
    Wrong on Bosnia.
    Wrong on Iraq.
    Wrong for America.

    That's the difference between me and the rest of the world! Happiness isn't good enough for me! I demand euphoria! - Calvin

    by Spaceman Spiff on Wed Aug 17, 2005 at 11:58:31 AM PDT

  •  You Owe Me... (4.00)
    A new laptop. I just crushed mine with my fist out of anger and frustration.

    It's the same cycle over and over again. When Clinton did things, they were bad. The same (and worse) things are okay with W. When JFK was running for president, people were separating religion and state with a wide moat so that the Pope didn't end up running the coutry. These days, we're "persecuting" John Roberts.

    Energy News: Side-by-Side
    Steal what you like.

    by Senor Pez on Wed Aug 17, 2005 at 11:58:32 AM PDT

  •  Bumpersticker Material (4.00)
    "You can support the troops but not the president."
    --Rep Tom Delay (R-TX)
  •  Unfortunately... (4.00)
    They'll just use the  "9/11 Changed Everything" Card. But sooner or later, that excuse card will be worn.

    P.S.: Not to be confused with "the Race Card," "the Get-Out-Of-Jail-Free Card," or my nearly useless Blockbuster Card.

    ITSALONGWAYTOGO when you don't know where you're going; you don't where you're going when you're lost...

    by Omen on Wed Aug 17, 2005 at 11:59:15 AM PDT

  •  yeah, but ... (4.00)
    9/11 changed everything, huh?
    •  911 didn't change shit (none)
       911 didn't change the fact that a lie is a lie and America SHOULD know better.

      These quotes are totally useful and should be beaten over everybodys head. If we say them enough eventually they will resonate onto a P. Diddy shirt or something corny but visible.

      THe defeatsit, "it will never work" shit needs to stop. We need to put the fight into terms they can understand and repetition is always a useful strategy, fuck look at marketing.

  •  Here's another howler (4.00)
    Hat tip to Magorn.

    The President  must remember that the military is a special instrument. It is lethal, and it is meant to be. It is not a civilian police force. It is not a political referee. And it is most certainly not designed to build a civilian society.

    - Condoleeza Rice, Foreign Affairs, January/February 2000.

    Rice was addressing Clinton.

    Let the great world spin for ever down the ringing grooves of change. - Tennyson

    by bumblebums on Wed Aug 17, 2005 at 11:59:47 AM PDT

  •  Another source. (4.00)
    This diary by Addison.  It's the best source of (amazingly hypocritcal) GOP Clinton-era quotations I've seen.

    If Bush were President when the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor, he would have invaded Mexico.-- Cervantes

    by jem6x on Wed Aug 17, 2005 at 12:00:58 PM PDT

  •  Ironic.. (4.00)
    I mean really, the war in Bosnia against ethnic cleansing...I mean...it blows my mind to piece that the very same people who were poo-pooing over bleading heart liberal causes like "spreading freedom" , nationbuilding, deficit spending, big government, are the same ones who are embracing it wholeheartedly with the Iraq war. Why is there such a big disconnect? Do you think the people would have been for the Iraq war if we had gone to it on the platform of "we want to spread freedom, and free the Iraqis"
    I could get behind that if that's what they ran on instead of lies.
    •  But of course not (4.00)
      The Ameican people WOULD NEVER have approved of an 'elective' war in the first place, a war that we start for our own purposes without any threat to our country, for any reason other than fear.

      The lies were manufactured and disseminated to gather support NO MATTER THE PRICE or THE SIZE OF THE LIE.

      This is why the Bush supporters are so adamant in their blind following of this man: they can't believe they were wrong, that they drank the KoolAid; they, like their leader, simply refuse to admit their errors.

      The crime is that people are dying, are being maimed, are losing faith in everything becauae of their acceptance of the lie, because of blind faith.

      If Bush had said, I want to avenge my daddy's name and get a bunch of oil for our SUV's, he would have had little support, but he would have been honest.

      He is a liar.

  •  CLARK@@@@@@!!! (4.00)

    mission accomplished by general wesley k. clark

    "You will determine whether rage or reason guides the United States in the struggle to come. You will choose whether we are known for revenge or compassion. Yo

    by AmericanHope on Wed Aug 17, 2005 at 12:02:10 PM PDT

  •  Great stuff. (none)
    Can you cite where each comment came from. I'd love to expose all these hypocrits
  •  Heh (3.66)
    Hey Kos, when did you start channeling Billmon? :-)

    Good work. Great stuff. Of course, asking these bozos to be consistent is like asking a snake to only go in a straight line. It's just not in their nature.

  •  if we want to use this, we better be sure (3.75)
    there aren't comments from dems at the time to the effect that repubs aren't supporting the troops when they oppose the president's policies, etc.
    and doesn't the use of these quotes offer repugs the possibility to say, lookee here, democrats support open-ended, ill-defined use of the military, too, when it's a democratic president making the orders
    i don't feel that way, but it seems like the argument could be made
    also, as an aside, weren't there no kias on the american side because we bombed from such great heights? and didn't this result in more civilian deaths and damage to civilian infrastructure?
  •  I would love to see (4.00)
    someone go on, say, O'Reilly, and debate him using nothing but these kind of quotes from Republicans, not mentioning that they are, in fact, quotes. Only afterward would that person point out that everything he or she had said had come from old Republican B.S.
  •  Full Page Ad (4.00)
    This would make a great full-page advertisement for placement in one or more of the major dailies.  Assuming any would be willing to run it.
  •  Forgot some: (4.00)
    "The administration's campaign has been a disaster. ... [It] escalated a guerrilla warfare into a real war, and the real losers are the Kosovars and innocent civilians." -- Senate Majority Whip Don Nickles of Oklahoma

    [Tom] DeLay, for example, said, "The White House has bombed its way around the globe. International respect and trust for America has diminished every time we casually let the bombs fly." As for Kosovo, DeLay complained that "no one wants us to be there" and that the president's effort "has harmed [our] standing in the world."

    Rep. Randy Cunningham (R-Calif.) accused Clinton of pursuing "the most inept foreign policy in the history of the United States."

    Those who make peaceful revolution impossible will make violent revolution inevitable. - John F. Kennedy

    by jpeskoff on Wed Aug 17, 2005 at 12:07:30 PM PDT

  •  Another gem (4.00)
    "And the question in my mind is how many additional American casualties is Saddam (Hussein) worth? And the answer is not that damned many. So, I think we got it right, both when we decided to expel him from Kuwait, but also when the president made the decision that we'd achieved our objectives and we were not going to go get bogged down in the problems of trying to take over and govern Iraq."

    ~Dick Cheney, 1992
    (4 years after Saddam gassed the Kurdish people)

  •  I simply don't have enough arms (none)
    .... to carry all the signs I wish I could bring to the peace vigil tonight, although since it's supposed to be silent support I imagine snarkiness, however well-deserved, would be out of place. (Then again, if I get interviewed, all bets are off ...)

    "Nature favors the apt, not the strong or the weak." Louis Sullivan

    by Lilibeth on Wed Aug 17, 2005 at 12:10:58 PM PDT

    •  No snark... (none)
      Follow Sheehan's lead...no snark, honest concern...honest questions.

      Furthermore, it'd be nice if everyone carried the same sign. There is more power in repetition. The progressive movement is suffering from "slogan fatigue" as it is. It's too much noise.

      Simplify the message. Repeat ad nasaeum. Pet causes stay home for another day.

      You can lead a conservative to logic, but you can't make them think!

      by mrCurmudgeon on Wed Aug 17, 2005 at 12:47:49 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Agreed (none)
        It's not my show. But it's hard to keep silent when it seems like people might finally listening ... still, I think just our presence will be proof enough. Thanks for your thoughtful words.

        "Nature favors the apt, not the strong or the weak." Louis Sullivan

        by Lilibeth on Wed Aug 17, 2005 at 01:03:06 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I understand. (none)
          But it's hard to keep silent when it seems like people might finally listening ... still, I think just our presence will be proof enough.

          It can be difficult. It feels like we have little representation in government, and it seems as if the entire nation is asleep.

          However, when it comes to messages as powerful as this, not only do we want people to listen, we want them to sympathize.

          One voice, one message...many, many, people.

          You can lead a conservative to logic, but you can't make them think!

          by mrCurmudgeon on Wed Aug 17, 2005 at 02:14:52 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  I remember the Simpsons episode (none)
        where the Movementarian cultists are trying to indoctrinate Homer with clever jingles with riffs and hooks in, and Homer is immune.  Then one of the brighter cultists realises the problem and starts a chant of "Movement, Movement, Movement, Movement..."  Pretty soon Homer is hooked.  

        The American public en masse is about as bright as Homer like that; a myriad of clever slogans slides off them like water off a cliche.  But one simple message repeated will get through.  

  •  Damn Obstructionists (none)
    The GOP that is...   It's amazing any "good" happened (supporting Muslim self-determination) during those nation building years.  Thank God the GOP leaders/pundit class put country before the Elephant in those days.  </snark>

    "do unto others..."

    by decitect on Wed Aug 17, 2005 at 12:11:37 PM PDT

  •  LOL (4.00)
    Doesn't Faux News have one of those studios with the street level windows? Somebody in NY should get a couple of quality handheld signs with the Hannity and W quotes on it made that would be visible on their cameras during Faux and Friends and all of their other lie fests... That would make my day.
  •  I didn't support.... (none)
    Clinton's bombing of Serbia, but just reading the quotes from that list of Neocon maggots about said war makes me sick. They're nothing but a bunch of two-faced, cowardly, lickspittles who do nothing but carry water for their Dear Leader Bush and promote a double standard, regardless of what anyone else might think. They are truly sickening.
  •  Blind Democrats (4.00)
    It's truly amazing we had all of these extremely hypocritical Republican quotes at our disposal for the 2004 election, and yet we used none of them.  It would have been great to have Kerry say something like "In the words of Tom Delay, you can support the troops, but not the president."  A simple quote like that would've made Delay look like a complete ass, and neutralize one of their top attack dogs.  It's a shame that Democrats haven't learned how to effectively use Republican's past comments against them.  Hell, the Bush administration got a lot of mileage out of a quote Kerry made over 10 years ago about hypothetically raising the gasoline tax.  Democrats need to realize that in the game of dirty politics, anything that anyone has ever said is fair game, and the Republican's provide us plenty of ammunition for it.
  •  Sure No KIA, But No Billions Paid Out (4.00)
    To wingnut military industrial firms and other takers.

    Okay, a few billions were paid out to some of the same firms (DynCorp leaps to mind). But not on this scale. Forget about blood for oil. Iraq is blood for pork.

    Step outside of two-dimensional politics.

    by NewDirection on Wed Aug 17, 2005 at 12:15:42 PM PDT

    •  Blood for pork. (4.00)
      That's a great observation. I haven't seen that put that way before, but I think it is the only theory that makes sense.

      Blood for pork.  Gotta write that down.

      If Bush were President when the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor, he would have invaded Mexico.-- Cervantes

      by jem6x on Wed Aug 17, 2005 at 12:20:08 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Oh the hypocricy!! (none)
    I agree with the poster upthread. Where were these quotes in the election! They should have been broadcast 24/7.
  •  Offered for your information (4.00)
    WaPo, 3/12/99

    Before the vote, House Majority Leader Richard K. Armey (R-Tex.) called the proposed troop deployment "poorly considered and unlikely to achieve our desired ends."

    Majority Whip Tom DeLay (R-Tex.) said, "America needs to quickly change directions and leave behind this chilling comedy of errors that has defined our foreign policy."

    Houston Chronicle, 3/12/99

    After more than 10 hours of debate, the House approved a resolution Thursday backing a possible commitment of U.S. forces to Kosovo in support of President Clinton's efforts to broker a peace deal between the Serbs and ethnic Albanian separatists.

    By a vote of 219-191, Congress gave its tentative support, but only if President Clinton provides lawmakers with a specific mission statement detailing the objectives of NATO-led peacekeeping operation in the Serbian province and how long the deployment will last.

    The resolution passed after lawmakers rejected another nonbinding measure by a vote of 237-178 offered by Majority Whip Tom DeLay,R-Sugar Land, and Rep. Tillie Fowler, R-Fla., that would have put Congress on record opposing deployment of forces under any circumstances.

    House Floor, 3/11/1999

    Mr. DeLAY. Mr. Chairman, I move to strike the requisite number of words.

       Mr. Chairman, I rise today to voice my complete opposition to sending American troops to Kosovo. There is simply no vision to this mission. Even the casual observer can see that the proposed Kosovo i nitiative has no timetable, no rules of engagement and no greater strategic plan for that region. Unfortunately, the undefined Kosovo m ission is symbolic of the lack of direction of our recent American foreign policy. There is a 6-year trend to send American troops anywhere for any reason, but there are no consistent goals that tie all of these missions together.

       Ronald Reagan once said that changing America's foreign policy is a little like towing an iceberg. You can only pick up speed as the frozen attitudes and mistakes of the past melt away. America needs to quickly change directions and leave behind the chilling comedy of errors that has defined our recent foreign policy.

       Ronald Reagan is a statesman. During his administration, the United States was the dominant force on the world's stage because there was no mystery to American foreign policy. During that time, America boldly told the world that we would bring peace through strength. Ronald Reagan stood up to the tyranny of communism and said that the American way would triumph, but not through conciliation and not through appeasement. The United States won that Cold War because of the truth of our principles. In every corner of the world we pushed for freedom and democracy.

       Oh, how American policy has changed since the days of Ronald Reagan. Today there is simply no cohesion and no consistent principles that form the basis for everything we do on any spot of this map of the world. American foreign policy is now one huge big mystery. Simply put, the administration is trying to lead the world with a feel-good foreign policy. This feel-good foreign policy tears us away from peace through strength and it has resulted in creating chaos through weakness. This administration makes threats and never follows up on them. They set deadlines that are broken and reset, just to be broken again. American foreign policy failures over the last 6 years litter the international landscape. Mission-creep in Somalia cost the lives of American soldiers. North Korea continues to flaunt international law by speeding ahead with their nuclear program with no consequences whatsoever. Haiti is still not the beacon of democracy, despite sending U.S. Marines there. Afghanistan and the Sudan were bombed in the blink of an eye. Yet Osama bin Laden still represents a threat to thousands of American lives.

       We continuously bomb Iraq, without any clear goals, and without getting any closer to our ultimate objective of Saddam Hussein being removed from power. Russia, with its massive nuclear capability is coming apart at the seams and selling weapons and technology to scrape by, and we do nothing. China is walking all over us, pure and simple. Currently we are stuck in a never-ending peacekeeping mission in Bosnia that was proposed as a 1-year commitment. That promise was made 4 years ago. And now we have Kosovo.

       Kosovo is not a hopeful nation aspiring to democracy. It is a big dangerous quagmire. The ethnic Albanians wanted total independence, and the Serbs do not want to give up any important parts of their country. Both parties have consistently rejected any chance of a real cease-fire.

       Mr. Chairman, American soldiers are trained to be warriors, not baby-sitters. The administration has no plan to do anything but just go to Kosovo, hold the hands of both sides and hope that they will behave when we leave. But of course they will not. The killing and mayhem will continue as soon as NATO pulls out.
       So how long does the President plan to keep our troops there any way? No occupation can or should last forever.

       There is a litany of reasons why we should not send troops to Kosovo, but the most compelling are the new power and responsibilities the mission unthinkingly gives to NATO. There are serious concerns about this new peace making direction for NATO. Its purpose is always to be a defensive alliance, not an offensive force.

       The CHAIRMAN. The time of the gentleman from Texas (Mr. DELAY) has expired.

       (By unanimous consent, Mr. DELAY was allowed to proceed for 2 additional minutes.)

       Mr. DeLAY. Mr. Chairman, NATO's purpose has always been a defensive alliance, not an offensive force going into nonmember nations uninvited. Once NATO starts meddling in the internal affairs of sovereign nations, where does it stop? Think about this question for a moment. Outside of the questions of time and cost and objective, the Kosovo p olicy we are debating here today would have tremendous ramification on NATO's overall mission. We have to take a stand against these kinds of deployments now to ensure that we stop them before they ever get started.

       NATO is starting to resemble a power-hungry imperialist army. Originally designed to defend member nations from attack, it is now setting itself up to be the attacker. Despite the fact that the two parties in Kosovo r efuse to negotiate even directly amongst themselves and have rejected a cease-fire, the administration threatens to bomb the Serbs to make them cooperate at the peace table.

       There is one major catch here. There is no peace table, just like there is no peace. The two sides continue to attack one another with a vengeance. It does not matter how many soldiers NATO sends over there, no number of troops can keep peace if there is no peace to begin with. The proposed Kosovo m ission is just another bad idea in a foreign policy with no focus.

       As with all the recent failures in American diplomacy, the administration is trying to obscure its lack of a comprehensive agenda, and they are doing it with bombs. Bombing a sovereign nation for ill-defined reasons with vague objectives undermines the American stature in the world. The international respect and trust for America has diminished every time we casually let the bombs fly. We must stop giving the appearance that our foreign policy is formulated by the Unabomber.

       Mr. Chairman, sending U.S. troops to Kosovo i s a lose-lose situation. No matter how we look at it, it is dangerous, it is costly.

       America has no strategic interests in the matter, and no one wants us to be there in the first place. Support the gentlewoman from Florida's amendment.

    House Floor, 3/11/1999

    Mr. BLUNT. Mr. Chairman, I move to strike the requisite number of words.

       Mr. Chairman, we have heard a number of times here today that the Congress should not be acting on this question yet. It is amazing to me that of our NATO allies, the members of the Bundestag can debate this question and vote on it, the members of the Parliament can debate this question, but the Members of the U.S. Congress cannot debate this question.

       I have heard here a number of times today that we should be waiting until there is a final agreement. Mr. Chairman, I am confident that every effort has been made to get assurances that if there was a final agreement, that the Congress would be consulted after that final agreement and before troops were deployed, and those assurances are not there.

       Yesterday, before a committee of the House, the Secretary of State said that this is not a good time for the Congress to be debating this issue. But then she went on to say that there is never a good time for the Congress to debate these issues because we just get in the way of diplomacy. That is not the role of the Congress as I see the role of the Congress in the Constitution and many others do. I am grateful for the

       Speaker's decision to provide this debate. Too many times, the Congress has said we will wait until the decision is made and the decision is made and the commitment is made so quickly that then we have a decision of whether we are going to support troops in the field, not to whether those troops would be in the field or not.

       There are questions that this House has an obligation to ask right now. Dr. Henry Kissinger, the former national security adviser, the former Secretary of State, gave some insightful testimony before the House Committee on International Relations yesterday. He said there is a critical question to be asked, under what circumstances should American military forces be used to pursue national objectives and what should those objectives be? Should American military might be available to enable every ethnic or religious group to achieve self-determination? If Kosovo, why not East Africa? Why not Central Asia? Is this part of our policy?

       I think there are questions that this Congress has to ask in regard to Kosovo. Why would we be there if we are there? What is our goal in Kosovo? I understand that part of the goal is to get Serbia out of Kosovo w ithout getting Kosovo o ut of Serbia. I submit to the Congress that that is a very difficult goal to achieve. How will we know when we have done it? We have been in Bosnia now for years and the checklist that we had hoped to be checking off, we cannot check any of the boxes yet. We are no closer to leaving Bosnia than we were the day we went into Bosnia. And what is the cost to our armed forces? What is the cost of our ability to defend America around the world?

       I thought the gentleman from California (Mr. HUNTER) made an incredibly effective presentation with the wrong conclusion. The presentation was the diminution of our military forces, our military readiness, our military benefits, our military research, our development of new weapons, and then one of the main reasons for that is this willingness to commit troops, to commit our defense capacity without any end in sight. We need to ask what that end is. There may in fact be a better way for the Congress to take up this issue. I would be fully in favor of the administration negotiating this question and then coming to the Congress and say, ``Here is what we have negotiated. What do you think?'' That has not happened time after time after time. We have sought assurances it would happen this time. There are no assurances forthcoming. For all those who say now is not the time, I would say to them, there will not be a time if we wait for the administration to determine when the Congress should be involved in this because, as the Secretary of State said yesterday, it is really never helpful for us to discuss these issues.

       The President and the Secretary of State should be asking for our approval. We need to be partners in this kind of policy. I rise in support of this amendment and to encourage the administration to fully involve the Congress in its future activities before they are completed.

    Senate Floor, 5/3/1999

      Mr. FRIST. Mr. President, for a deliberative democracy, going to war is an agonizing task. It is a slow, cumbersome, sometimes combative process itself. It is discomforting to all.

       With regards to Kosovo , I understand the President's vision of what our world should be and what the United States' role in such a world should be. I believe I also understand the foundations of his vision of the role of the United States in a Europe fundamentally different than the one into which NATO was born--where barbarians are not allowed to butcher, and where long term stability on the continent must be defended to maintain the standard of living we have fought so hard to achieve.

       I also understand the intent of the authors and sponsors of this resolution. For our Nation to prevail in war, both the citizenry and the Congress must be united behind the Commander in Chief during times of war. I commend my colleague from Arizona for his intent.

       As Members of the Senate, we must make no mistake about the importance of this vote, but we must also keep in mind the three critical interpretations this vote represents, regardless of the specific wording of the resolution:

       First, this vote will be interpreted as a vote on whether we approve of the President's strategy so far--a strategy which seems to have initially failed to achieve at least one of our primary goals: to stop ethnic cleansing in Kosovo .

       Second, this vote will be interpreted as a vote on what we believe the role of the Congress should be in the future prosecution of this unfolding war.

       Third, and most important, this vote will be interpreted as a statement on whether we are willing to commit ground troops to invade Yugoslavia, and whether we are willing to risk a considerable sum in blood and treasure to meet those goals.

       On all three accounts, the vote on this resolution is premature. The wisdom or failure of the President's strategy cannot yet be fully determined. More important, at the current time in our military campaign, with the decision of what means will be employed to achieve our ends still undetermined, it is premature for Congress to relinquish any future authority to say how this war will or will not be conducted.

       While I said that I fully appreciate the importance of an unencumbered Commander in Chief, I also believe it is necessary for Congress to retain its limited but critical Constitutional role in declaring war. Such a vote, where that limited authority would be relinquished now at a time prior to the President specifically seeking it from the Congress, is tantamount to approval of the deployment of ground troops to invade Kosovo or other parts of Yugoslavia. That is a blessing I am not willing to give at this time--when the Commander in Chief has not even sought that approval.

       Because the resolution is premature, I will not support it now. If the Commander in Chief believes this war must be expanded beyond the air campaign, he will have every opportunity to seek that authority. I will listen thoroughly and fulfill my Constitutional duties at that time.

       For now, I will vote to table this resolution because such a vote does not tie the President's hands more that he has already. I certainly will not give aid and comfort to our enemies by voting against the possibility of using ground troops. My vote allows the President full range of options but does underscore my insistence that he more adequately address his rationale before the U.S. Congress and the American people before committing ground troops to battle.

    Senate Floor, 3/21/2000

      Mr. MCCAIN. Mr. President, this Friday marks the first anniversary of NATO's air campaign to drive Serbian forces out of Kosovo . I want to speak briefly this morning about the current situation that, regrettably, remains, in the words of the respected newsmagazine, The Economist, ``a mess.''

       Reports over the weekend that General Reinhardt, the KFOR commander, believes that peacekeeping troops will likely need to remain in Kosovo for ten years or more have, I am sure, given my colleagues more than just cause to worry over the wisdom of our continued involvement there. That is more than understandable, given the divisions among NATO peacekeepers, and our allies' frustrating reluctance to meet their commitments to the international police force in Kosovo ; considering the U.N.'s predictable difficulty in rebuilding something approaching normal civilian live where ethnic hatreds are as deep-seated as ever; and considering that the malevolent Mr. Milosevic continues to make trouble whenever and wherever he can.

       Surely, the United States needs to be much more forceful with some of our allies who assume that the United States will always compensate for the deficiencies of their resolve and accept a greatly disproportionate share of the burden of stabilizing the Balkans. Most importantly, we must insist, and I emphasize that verb, that we have the full support of our peacekeeping partners in opposing Serbian efforts to foment further violence in Mitrovica and elsewhere. One of our allies sometimes appears to act, in defiance of the facts on the ground and the dictates of conscience, as a protector of Serb aggressors. Our other allies in KFOR should help us persuade our badly mistaken friend that such an attitude is a terrible impediment to KFOR's success.

       This does not mean that the United States must end or threaten to end in the near term our participation in KFOR. Despite the unacceptable circumstances of the weak and endangered peace in Kosovo , it is infinitely preferable to the widespread atrocities committed during the course of Serbian aggression, atrocities that would surely reoccur were NATO to fail in our current mission. But our partners in peace can be persuaded by strong American leadership that the American people will not tolerate indefinitely Europe's inadequate commitment to peace and stability in their own backyard.

       Mr. President, I do not mean to overlook or minimize in my discussion the challenges to peace created by ethnic Albanian extremists. We must be resolute in opposition to any threats wherever they occur. But it is a grave mistake to forget that nearly all the violence and instability afflicting the Balkans over the last decade originated in the unspeakable inhumanity of Belgrade's aggressors.
       The problems in the Balkans are, for the most part, attributable to the Serbian regime, led by an indicted war criminal who continues to hold onto power despite overwhelming public sentiment against him. At any time, he can be expected to foment conflict in Kosovo , Montenegro, or in Bosnia.

       That the domestic opposition to him has been divided and anemic does not detract from the legitimacy of those who seek his removal from power. In every respect, his is the rogue regime that constitutes the greatest threat to regional peace, just as Saddam Hussein does in the Persian Gulf and Kim Jong Il does in the Korean Peninsula.

       The Senate's passage last November by unanimous consent of the Serbian Democratization Act was an illustration of the extent of Congress' commitment to democratic change in Serbia as the necessary condition to lasting stability in the region. We should never forget that, for all the long and sad history of conflict in the Balkans, it was only when dictatorial regimes sought to exploit ethnic divisions did conflict overwhelm peace. The recent election of a liberal government in Croatia has greatly benefited the situation in Bosnia. Only through similar change in Serbia will a lasting peace begin in Yugoslavia. United States policy in the Balkans, and in Yugoslavia in particular, must be focused on affecting the democratic transformation of Serbia that the Serbian people themselves desire.

       Final passage of the Serbian Democratization Act will be an important step in the right direction. In the meantime, there must be no lifting of the sanctions on Serbia, and no repetition in Montenegro of what occurred in Kosovo --vague and unbelieved threats to prevent the kind of ethnic cleansing we are now spending billions of dollars to reverse.

       In the days ahead, Mr. President, I hope to work again with my colleagues and with the administration to help focus United States policy on achieving the goals in the Balkans that are important to protecting both America's interests and values in Europe.

       Finally, on a personal note, if I may, Mr. President, as has probably been noted occasionally, I have been absent from the Senate for some time. I will not burden my colleagues with a full discussion of how I spent my time away and what I learned from the experience. Nor do I think the floor of the U.S. Senate is the proper place to discuss in detail my personal feelings or political plans. However, Mr. President, I would like to say a few words about the great privilege we all share, the privilege of serving the greatest nation in history.

       I have enjoyed that privilege since I was 17 years old, and I consider myself fortunate beyond measure to have done so. This country and her causes are a blessing to mankind, and they honor all of us who work to make America an even better place, and America's example a greater influence on human history. I felt that way before I ran for President, and I feel that way today. And although I have lost my bid to be President, I will never lose my appreciation for the honor of serving America in any capacity, and for the good will and confidence of the people of Arizona who allow me to serve in the U.S. Senate, a body that has seen the honorable service of so many more distinguished Americans than the flawed man who addresses you now.

       I have nothing but gratitude to the American people for the privilege of serving them and for their consideration of my candidacy for President. I have incurred a debt to them that I doubt I can ever fully repay. But I intend to do what I can, working with my congressional colleagues, Republicans and Democrats, to help bring about the changes to the practices and institutions of our democracy that they want and deserve.

       These reforms, Mr. President, are not ends in themselves. They are means to a much more important end. They are intended to sustain America's pride in the way we govern ourselves, and in the end to remind us all, those of us lucky enough to serve and those who elect us, what a special thing it is to be an American. I was reminded of that every single day of this campaign by Americans, those who supported me and those who did not, who wanted little for themselves individually, but simply for our country to remain, what she's always been, ``the last, best hope of earth.'' I will never forget it.

    Senate Floor, 3/23/1999

    Mr. INHOFE. Mr. President, it seems we are about to go to war with Yugoslavia. Our stated purpose is to stop the humanitarian disaster there caused by a civil war. If we do not act, we are told, innocent people will be killed, will be wounded, will be displaced from their homes. Indeed, over 2,000 have already been killed in the Kosovo civil war in just the last year. Many more have been uprooted. There are serious problems there. No one disputes that.

       My question is, Where is the vital U.S. national interest?

       The National Defense Council Foundation recently reported that there are at least 60 conflicts going on in the world involving humanitarian suffering of one kind or another. There are 30 wars being waged--civil wars, guerrilla wars, major terrorist campaigns. Many are driven by ethnic quarrels and religious disputes which have raged for decades, if not for centuries.

       Just consider a partial list from recent years: 800,000 to 1 million people have been brutally murdered in Rwanda alone; tens of thousands killed in civil wars in Sudan, Algeria and Angola; thousands killed in civil war in Ethiopia; in January, 140 civilians killed by paramilitary squads in Colombia; including 27 worshipers slain during a village church service.

       Why is there no outcry for these millions of people who are being brutally murdered in other places in the world, but we are all concerned about the humanitarian problems in Kosovo ?

       I have to say this, and I know it is very unpopular to say it, but I am going to quote a guy whose name is Roger Wilkins. He is a professor of history and American culture at George Mason University:

       I think it is pretty clear. U.S. foreign policy is geared to the European-American sensibility which takes the lives of white people much more seriously than the lives of people who aren't white.

       Let me read a couple paragraphs from an article in the Minneapolis-St. Paul Star Tribune on January 31, 1999:

       But no one mobilized on behalf of perhaps 500 people who were shot, hacked and burned to death in a village in eastern Congo, in central Africa, around the same time. No outrage was expressed on behalf of many other innocents who had the misfortune to be slain just off the world's stage over the past few weeks.

       Why do 45 white Europeans rate an all-out response while several hundred black Africans are barely worth notice?

       And this is all in that same timeframe.

       Further quoting the Minneapolis-St. Paul Star Tribune:

       While U.S. officials struggled to provide an answer, analysts said the uneven U.S. responses to a spurt of violence in the past month illuminates not just an immoral or perhaps racist foreign policy, but one that fails on pragmatic and strategic grounds as well.

       So now the President wants us to send the U.S. military into Kosovo , not to enforce a peace agreement--we do not have a peace agreement, as we were told 2 weeks ago--but to inject ourselves into the middle of an ongoing civil war, with no clearly defined military objective, no assurance of success, no exit strategy and great, great risk to our pilots and men and women in uniform.

       We know that the Yugoslav leader, Mr. Milosevic, is a bad guy. No one disputes that. But are we absolutely sure that there are some good guys, too? Are there any good guys in the fight that stretches back over 500 years?

       When I was in Kosovo recently, I was horrified as I was going through the main road--Kosovo is only 75 miles wide and 75 miles long, and there is one road going all the way through it. I was only able to see two dead people at the time. They turned them over and both of them were Serbs. They had been executed at pointblank range. And they were Serbs, not Kosovars, not Albanians. So the national interest here is not at all clear.

       Let me quote Dr. Henry Kissinger, the former Secretary of State and National Security Adviser. In an op-ed piece in the Washington Post on February 24, Kissinger said he was opposed to U.S. military involvement in Kosovo . He is not unaware of the humanitarian concerns that the President and others talk about. Here are just a few of the highlights of what he said:

       The proposed deployment in Kosovo does not deal with any threat to American security as traditionally conceived.

       Kosovo is no more a threat to America than Haiti was to Europe.

       If Kosovo , why not East Africa or Central Asia?

       We must take care not to stretch ourselves too thin in the face of far less ambiguous threats in the Middle East and Northeast Asia.

       Each incremental deployment into the Balkans is bound to weaken our ability to deal with Saddam Hussein and North Korea.

       I think this is very, very significant, the last two points.

       First of all, I have asked the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, I have asked the Chiefs, I have asked the CINCs, the commanders in chief, this question: If we have to send troops into Kosovo --keep in mind that people may lie to you and say this is going to be an airstrike. Anybody who knows anything about military strategy and warfare knows you can't do it all from the air. You have to ultimately send in ground troops. So we are talking about sending in ground troops. That is in a theater where the logistics support for ground troops is handled out of the 21st TACOM in Germany. I was over in the 21st TACOM. Right now, they are at 110 percent capacity just supporting Bosnia. They don't have any more capacity. The commander in chief there said, if we send ground troops into Iraq or Kosovo , we are going to be 100 percent dependent upon Guard and Reserve to support those troops. And look what has happened to the Guard and Reserve now because of the decimation of our military through its budget, finding ourselves only half the size we were in 1991.

       Right now, we don't have the capacity. We have to depend on Guard and Reserves, and in doing this we don't have the critical MOSs. You can't expect doctors in the Guard to be deployed for 270 days and maintain their practice, so we now have ourselves faced with a problem, a serious problem, and that is we cannot carry out the national military strategy, which is to be able to defend America on two regional fronts. We don't have the capacity to do it. If we could do it on nearly simultaneous fronts within 45 days between each conflict, then we go up from low-medium risk to a medium-high risk, which is translated in lives of Americans.

       Going into Kosovo for an unlimited duration at who knows what cost, who knows the amount of risk, the risk will be higher.

       I chair the readiness subcommittee of the Senate Armed Services Committee, Mr. President, and I can tell you right now that we are in the same situation we were in in the late 1970s with the hollow force. We can't afford to dilute our military strength anymore. And that is not even mentioning the immediate risk to our forces that they will face in Yugoslavia where the Serbs have sophisticated Russian-made air defense and thousands of well-trained and equipped troops motivated to fight and die for their country.

       In recent testimony before the Senate Armed Services Committee, some of our top military leaders were very frank about what they expected for any U.S. military operation in Kosovo .

       Air Force Chief of Staff General Ryan said, ``There stands a very good chance that we will lose aircraft against Yugoslavian air defense.''

       Navy Chief of Staff, Admiral Johnson, said, ``We must be prepared to take losses.''

       Marine Commandant, General Krulak, said it will be ``tremendously dangerous.''

       And then George Tenet, the Director of Central Intelligence, said this is not Bosnia we are talking about, this is Kosovo where they are not tired, they are not worn out, and they are ready to fight and kill Americans.

       So we are faced with that serious problem, Mr. President. We should not under any circumstances go into Kosovo . Our vital security interests are not at stake, where we don't have a clear military objective or an exit strategy, or where our policy doesn't fit into any coherent broader foreign policy vision.
       So let me go back to my opening statement. Since we have no national security risks at stake, there must be another reason for our involvement. It is not humanitarian because of the following:

       800,000 to 1 million killed in ethnic strife in Rwanda; tens of thousands killed in civil wars in Sudan, Algeria, and Angola; thousands killed in civil war in Ethiopia; in January, 140 civilians killed by paramilitary squads in Colombia, including 27 worshipers slain during a village church service.

       Why is there no outcry for U.S. involvement in these obvious humanitarian situations?

       ``I think it's pretty clear,'' said Roger Wilkins, professor of history and American culture at George Mason University. ``U.S. foreign policy is geared to the European-American sensibility which takes the lives of white people much more seriously than the lives of people who aren't white.''

       Anyone who supports our sending American troops into Kosovo must be aware this will come back and haunt them. Mr. President, I suggest the absence of a quorum.

       The PRESIDING OFFICER (Mr. SMITH of Oregon). The clerk will call the roll.

       The legislative clerk proceeded to call the roll.

       Mr. NICKLES. Mr. President, I ask unanimous consent that the order for the quorum call be rescinded.

       The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.

       Mr. NICKLES. Mr. President, for the information of our colleagues, the majority leader will soon be coming over to make a unanimous consent request concerning the vote on a resolution dealing with Kosovo . I have been involved in the negotiations of the resolution. I might read it for my colleagues, for the information of my colleagues, and then I am going to state my opposition to it. But for the information of all of our colleagues, it is our hope and our expectation we would have a vote on this resolution in the not too distant future, possibly as early as 6 or 6:30 or 7 o'clock. So I wanted my colleagues to be aware of that.

       Mr. President, this resolution authorizes the President of the United States to conduct military air operations and missile strikes against the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, Serbia, and Montenegro.

       The resolution reads,

       Resolved by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America and Congress assembled, That the President of the United States is authorized to conduct military air operations and missile strikes in cooperation with our NATO allies against the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, Serbia and Montenegro.

       It is very simple. It is very short. There are not a long list of ``whereases,'' not a lot of confusion. It says we authorize the President of the United States to conduct airstrikes against Serbia.

       I oppose this resolution. I will take a couple of minutes to explain my opposition. I understand and I have great respect for many of our colleagues who are supportive. I have joined with colleagues who went to the White House on Friday and also earlier today to talk to the President and hear his side of the issue. He tried to make a very strong case for airstrikes and for military intervention. He didn't convince me. I respect his opinion. I just happen to disagree with him.

       Time and time again I ask, If we are going to war, why are we going to war? Make no mistake, if we conduct airstrikes against Serbia, we are going to war. I don't think we should do that lightly.

       I tell my colleagues, the resolution that we are voting on, in my opinion, is a very important resolution. It is probably one of the most important votes we will conduct, certainly this session of Congress. Maybe Members will look back over their Senate career and it may be one of the most important votes Members will cast in their Senate career.

       I urge my colleagues to vote no on this resolution. That

       means I think that we are making a mistake by conducting a bombing campaign in Serbia. A bombing campaign will also lead to ground campaigns. A lot of people have the false assumption that if we have airstrikes, that is it. Many times there has been a tendency by this administration--and maybe previous administrations as well--that we can do things by air and that will do it.

       We had an air campaign, we had military strikes in the air against Iraq in December--I believe December 18, 19, and 20. It was a significant military operation. Why? Because we wanted to get the arms control inspectors back into Iraq. We bombed them like crazy. Guess what. We don't have any arms control inspectors in Iraq today, so air didn't do it. Saddam Hussein is now able to build weapons of mass destruction. The air campaign didn't change his policies one iota.

       What about in Serbia? The whole purpose of this--I will read from yesterday's New York Times, an interview with Madeleine Albright, Secretary of State,

       Two days after President Clinton warned that the Serbs had gone beyond ``the threshold'' of violence in their southern province, Secretary of State Madeleine K. Albright said she was sending Mr. Holbrooke to present Mr. Milosevic with a ``stark choice.''

       That choice, she said, was for him to agree to the settlement signed in Paris last week by the ethnic Albanians ..... or face NATO air strikes.

       In other words, if the Serbs don't sign on to the agreement that was negotiated in France, they are going to face airstrikes. In other words, we are going to be attacking a foreign country because they refused to allow an international force to be stationed in their country. That is what the Paris agreement is.

       Some of our colleagues say they will vote for airstrikes but they won't vote for ground forces. The Secretary of State says we are going to bomb them until they agree to sign up to a peace agreement, a peace agreement that calls for stationing 28,000 international troops into Kosovo .

       I just disagree. I don't think you can bomb a country into submitting to a peace agreement. That is more than coercion, and I don't think you get real peace by coercing somebody. Maybe cajoling people, maybe a little leverage here and there, but to say we will bomb your country until you sign a peace agreement is probably very shortsighted and not real peace, and to station the 28,000 troops into hostile territory I think would be a very serious mistake.

       I have heard the President's arguments. I haven't made the argument this is not in our national interest, but I will say there is--I started to say a civil war is going on in Kosovo , but it is not even to the point of a civil war. There is certainly an armed conflict. There is guerrilla warfare going on. There has been sniping going on. There have been people killed on both sides. I think that is unfortunate, but it has been happening. But this is not the only civil conflict that is going on around the world. Yet in this conflict, we will take sides. Maybe if you declare it is a civil war going on, a total civil war going on in Kosovo --why should we be taking sides? Should we be the air force for the KLA, the Kosovo Liberation Army? Should we be trying to help them fulfill their goals?

       Their goal is not autonomy; their goal is independence. They were somewhat reluctant to sign on to the France so-called

       peace agreement because they didn't want autonomy; they wanted independence. They will never be satisfied until they have independence. The French peace accords say we will insert this peacekeeping force of 28,000 troops for 3 years, we will have autonomy at that time, and then we are somewhat silent on what happens at the end of 3 years. If anyone has talked to the KLA, they know that the KLA wants independence. Should we be intervening to the extent of taking that side?

       Some of my colleagues say if Serbia is really massing and having military actions against the KLA, instead of us just bombing, why don't we just give them some support? Why don't we give them some munitions and help them defend themselves? It is similar to the argument many of us made in Bosnia: Instead of sending troops, we wanted to take the arms embargo off and allow them to defend themselves. Senator Dole stood on the floor many times and said let's allow them to defend themselves.

       Some people made that same argument today, dealing with the Kosovars. The problem is, the peace agreement that has been negotiated says we will disarm the KLA. I think the chances of that happening are slim, if nonexistent. They will hide the arms. We will not be successful in disarming, nor do I really think that we should. We will be very much involved in a civil war. We are taking the side of the Kosovars. Many of the Kosovars are great people and I love them and some are very peace loving, but there are some people on the other side, on the KLA side, who have assassinated and murdered as well.
       I have serious, serious reservations about getting involved in a civil war. I have very strong reservations about the ability to be able to bomb somebody to the peace table and making them agree to a peace agreement that they were not a signatory to.

       I am reminded by some of our friends and colleagues that this is a continuation of President Bush's policy. As a matter of fact, in December of 1992 President Bush--and he was a lame duck President at the time--issued a very stern warning to Mr. Milosevic: If he made a military move in Kosovo , there would be significant and serious consequences. Mr. Milosevic rightfully respected President Bush, and he didn't make that move. I supported President Bush in making that statement. I think he was right in doing so.

       However, there is a big difference between that statement and saying we will move militarily if he moves aggressively against the Kosovars. There is a big difference between that and saying we will bomb you until you agree to a peace agreement, and part of that peace agreement is stationing 28,000 troops in Kosovo . There is a big difference. I hope our colleagues will understand that difference. That is one of the reasons I am vigorously opposed to this resolution. I don't think you can bomb a sovereign nation into submission of a peace agreement.

       Let me mention a couple of other reservations that I have. Somebody said, What about the credibility of NATO? NATO, for 50 years, has helped sustain peace and stability throughout Europe. It has been a great alliance. That is true. NATO has been a great alliance. It has been a defensive alliance. NATO has never taken military action against a non-NATO member when other NATO countries weren't threatened. Now we are breaking new ground and we are moving into areas which I believe greatly expand NATO's mission far beyond the defensive alliance that it was created under.

    Another reservation I have: The Constitution says that Congress shall declare war; it doesn't say the President can initiate war. The President started at least consulting Congress on Friday. He also consulted with Congress today, Tuesday. We understand that war is imminent. I don't consider that consultation. I remember about 4 weeks ago when Secretary of State Albright and Secretary of Defense Cohen briefed a few of us on the Paris negotiations, or the negotiations in France. They basically said: We are trying to get both sides to sign; we think maybe the Kosovars will sign, but the Serbs and Mr. Milosevic are not inclined to. But if we can get the Kosovars to sign, we will bomb the Serbs until they do sign.

       I left there thinking, you have to be kidding. That is their policy? I want peace. I want peace as much as President Clinton. I want peace as much as Secretary Albright, throughout Yugoslavia, but I don't think by initiating bombing we will bring about peace. I am afraid, instead of increasing stability, it might increase violence.

       There might be adverse reactions that this administration hasn't thought about. Instead of bringing about stability, it may well be that the Serbian forces are going to move more aggressively. In the last 24 hours, it looks like that may be the case. So instead of convincing Mr. Milosevic to take the Serbs out of Kosovo , they may be moving in more aggressively. It looks as if that is happening now. Instead of dissuading him from oppression on the Kosovars, he may be more oppressive, more aggressive, and he may run more people away from their homes and burn more villages. Instead of bringing stability, it may be bringing instability, and it may be forcing, as a result of this bombing, Mr. Milosevic--instead of his response being to move back into greater Serbia and away from Kosovo , he may be more assertive and aggressive and he may want to strike out against the United States. If airplanes are flying, he might find that is unsuccessful. I hope he has no success against our pilots and our planes, but if he is not successful against our planes, what can he be successful against? Maybe the KLA, or maybe he would be more aggressive in striking out where he can have results on the ground.

       So by initiating the bombing, instead of bringing stability, we may be bringing instability. We may be igniting a tinderbox that has been very, very explosive for a long time. I hope that doesn't happen, but I can easily see how it could happen. I have heard my colleague, Senator INHOFE, allude to the fact that former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger alluded to that.

       I will read this one sentence: `` The threatening escalation sketched by the President to Macedonia, Greece and Turkey are, in the long run, more likely to result from the emergence of a

       Kosovo State.'' Well, the President, in this so-called peace accord, is supporting autonomy for Kosovo . I have already stated that the Kosovo Liberation Army doesn't want autonomy, they want independence. If they are an independent state, many people see that usually aligned with Albania and may be including the Albanians in Macedonia. So you have a greater Albania which would be very destabilizing, certainly, toward the Greeks and maybe other European allies. So the peace accord says we don't want independence for Kosovo , we just want autonomy.

       Former Secretary of State Kissinger says maybe that makes it more dangerous and maybe violence would be escalated in that process. Instead of being a stabilizing factor, it may be an escalating factor. That is not just me saying that. That is Henry Kissinger and other people I respect a great deal saying that, also.

       I am glad we are going to be voting on this resolution. We are going to have this vote--at least that is our expectation. I know the leader is going to propound a request before too long. It is important that we vote on this. It would be easy for this Senator, or any other Senator, to say we are never going to vote on this; we can stop this, and frankly, if you stop it long enough, maybe the President will be bombing and then you can say, hey, it doesn't make any difference, he already started bombing. I think that would be a mistake. We ought to have an up-or-down vote. Is this the right thing to do or not?

       So I urge my colleagues to support the leader in his efforts to come to an agreement on a vote on this resolution. I, for one --I say ``for one'' because even though I am assistant majority leader, I have not asked one colleague to vote one way or another on this resolution. Some issues are too important to play partisan politics on. I am not playing partisan politics. I refuse to do so. These are tough votes.

       I remember the vote we had on the Persian Gulf war in 1991, authorizing the use of force. We already had 550,000 troops stationed in the Persian Gulf ready to fulfill our obligations as outlined by President Bush to remove Saddam Hussein and the Iraqis from Kuwait. We had a good debate on the floor. It wasn't easy. It was a close debate and a close vote--52-47. I thought it was a good vote the way it turned out.

       I am going to vote against this resolution because I think it is a mistake. Maybe I am wrong, and if bombing commences, I hope and pray that every single pilot will be returned safely, and that there will be peace and harmony and stability throughout Kosovo . But I am concerned that we are making a mistake. I don't believe you can bomb a country into submission and force them into a peace agreement that they determine is against their interest. I don't think you can bomb a country and say we are going to bomb you until you agree to have stationed 28,000 troops in your homeland. And this is Serbian homeland, and if you go back centuries, fighting has been going on in this country for centuries.

       One other comment. Somebody said, ``What about the atrocities?'' I am concerned about the atrocities, but we have to look at what is in our national interest. There were 96 people killed in Borneo last weekend. In Turkey, something like 37,000 Kurds have lost their lives. They want independence. The Kurds in Iraq want independence; they want their own homeland. What about in Sudan where there have been over a million lives lost? What about Burundi, where 200,000 lives have been lost. Or Rwanda, where 700,000 lives have been lost?

       We have to be very careful. We had a Civil War in this country 130-some years ago, and 600,000 Americans lost their lives. I am glad we didn't have foreign powers intervene in our Civil War. I think that would have been a mistake. I am afraid that we are making a mistake by intervening in the war now going on in Kosovo . I hope this resolution that we are getting ready to vote on is not agreed to. I urge colleagues to vote no on the resolution.

       I yield the floor.

    Line up and chop these up however you wish

    "Our country right or wrong. When right, to be kept right; when wrong, to be put right" - Carl Schurz

    by RBH on Wed Aug 17, 2005 at 12:19:43 PM PDT

  •  Hahaha love that Santorum quote (4.00)
    That Santorum quote is priceless.  I bet if you show that quote to anyone they will think it was said about the current President.  By contrast, Clinton did have a good plan, good foreign policy, and a clear exit strategy.
  •  IOKIYAAR (none)
    The GOP was uncooperative in Bosnia and Somalia; distractionist from Al Qaeda and Saddam during Lewinsky; corrupting in Central and South America for a century; absent in Darfur; cozy with despots in China, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia and myriad African countries; offensive to our closest allies; bullying towards Cuba. The administration even took the time to dis Luxembourg during a recent press conference.

    The only regions where their foreign policy has not been destructive is Antarctica and outer space (but they're working on the latter).  I just hope the rest of the world understands that this isolated group of Americans WANTS them to hates us, and that the only way to defeat such thinking is to defy the temptation to hate and instead try to appeal to the best in us.

  •  Thank you (4.00)
    I'm using that DeLay quote on a sign when I go to Crawford.  Priceless.

    "You might think that. I couldn't possibly comment." Frances Urquhart (House of Cards)

    by Yankee in exile on Wed Aug 17, 2005 at 12:23:26 PM PDT

  •  Good Stuff (none)
    After reading some of these quotes, it really makes you wonder how ridiculous they were when compared to the current situation in Iraq.

    These quotes would apply 100x more than to the Iraq war than the Bosnian war.

  •  This is great stuff kos! (none)
    I'm going to use some of these in my LTE's.  I'll pass it along to my friends on my list-serv too.

    We here in PA can really use Little Ricky's quote.  This is great!

    kos you are great!

  •  Hannity is a hypocritical dickhead.... (4.00)
    "No goal, no objective, not until we have those things and a compelling case is made, then I say, back out of it, because innocent people are going to die for nothing. That's why I'm against it."
    -Sean Hannity, Fox News, 4/5/99

    ...there was massive genocide going on in Kosovo... certainly as bad as anything Saddam was doing... Whenever anybody talks about civilian deaths today, Sean invariably replies: "so you've sided with Saddam? ...who butchered his own people?" ... But back then, the murder was perfectly fine, and it wasn't worth "innocent people dying" to stop it...

    •  Our own hypocrisy (none)
      "Hannity is a hypocritical dickhead...."
      Most definitely YES

      "...there was massive genocide going on in Kosovo... certainly as bad as anything Saddam was doing..."
      Most definitely NO

      The quotes Kos posts are great examples of the hypocrisy of Republican leaders, pundits, etc.  But I'm worried that this can be easily turned around to point out the hypocrisy of several Democrats on the same issue.

      •  pretty easy to differentiate... (none)
        We had unanimous NATO support before going into Kosovo... the way it's supposed to work when a situation presents a general threat to the world...

        ...Had there been a true international coalition here, I'd have been more likely to support our taking part...

        but you're point is well taken...

        •  your point... (none)
          damned spelling...
        •  different but many parellels (none)
          The circumstances are different (like the NATO support - which, btw, was not unanimously supported - acquiesence would be a better term, among many others) but there are a lot of disturbing parallels between the Kosovo and Iraq wars.
          •  What would you say the parallels are? n/t (none)
            •  here are a few - (none)
              • war of agression on a country that poses no military threat to the United States.
              • predictions of quick "victory" that proved false.
              • pretense of diplomacy to avoid conflict
              • attempts to convince the UN to authorize action that failed.
              • long term committments, US troops are still in both countries.
              • both wars have the potential to destabilize the surrounding regions.
              • bogus/exaggeration of "intelligence" used as pretext for war
              • mainstream media cheerleaders for the wars
              • US targetted and killed journalists in these wars
          •  I think it's accurate to say... (none)
            that the basic premise -- carrying out a military campaign to counter Serbian ethnic cleansing -- was unanimously supported...that basic, fundamental consensus makes Kosovo very, very different than Iraq...  
            •  unanimously supported (none)
              by 19 nations...
              •  acquiesence a better word (none)
                There wasn't a yea/nea vote to support the Kosovo war among NATO members.  If there was such a vote, you can bet that Greece would never have supported such a position, with almost 98% disapproval among the public in that country.

                And Greece wasn't alone in its concern over the transformation of NATO from a defense alliance to deter and contain the USSR into an offensive one.  Another concern for NATO members was that there is no basis in international law for NATO initiating offensive wars, and of course there was no UN support for this war.  Public opinion in most NATO countries was firmly against the war and the opposition only grew during the course of the war.

            •  I can't follow your logic. (none)
              Is it the lack of NATO support for the Iraq war that troubles you?  If Germany and France were to support Bush's maniacal policy, is that good enough for you?

              Bush did put together a coalition of the "willing" (i'm sure they all unanimously supported this too).  Must have been some consensus for them to join in, no?

              How many nations need to come to a consensus before they can start initiating wars of agression for "noble" reasons - 2, 3, 5, 10?

              •  I think... (none)
                that had NATO (as in Kosovo) or the UN as institutions formally granted support, I could have concluded that the world has decided that Iraq is a threat -- and even if I personally didn't agree, I could at least feel comforted that an ordered escalation process transpired... I could at least say that if the U.S. is one partner within a formal consensus, no short cuts were taken... sort of like with Bush I and the Persian Gulf War: I was uneasy about the effort, but he established legitimacy in gaining UN consensus...

                With Iraq however, the White House decided that essentially, the U.S. on its own should answer the world's general threats... The only case where we should act unilaterally is when there are true immediate and direct threats to our shores... e.g., the cuban missile crisis... and what's worse, the WH misled us into thinking Iraq actually represented that kind of threat to us -- it NEVER did, even when we thought there were WMD's...

                So to answer your question broadly, I'm not entirely uncomfortable with military action based on substantive consensus...

    •  Difference between Clinton and Bush? (none)
      Clinton stopped genocide in the Balkans. Bush just might start one in Iraq

      Change 10% of the electorate and we will have a landslide and a mandate.

      by Jlukes on Wed Aug 17, 2005 at 04:10:23 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Sources? (4.00)
    The Tom DeLay quotation makes a great rally sign, bumper sticker, or line for a call-in show.

    The Rick Santorum quotation ought to be used in next year's Senate campaign.

    But we need solid sources for these, including date and forum.  We can't just spread quotations without sources, it's a very dangerous habit.  It's how Cynthia McKinney lost an election for something she never said.  It's why most people still believe Gore claimed to invent the Internet.

    I think we set a bad example when we post political quotations on a blog's front page without source information.

    •  Anytime (none)
      a liberal addresses any of these quote worthy COnservative Prostitutes on any of they cable shows etc, they should beat the fuckers over the head with their own hypocritical quotes.

      If repititon works in marketing in can work in getting out the truth.

      BEat these quotes until everybody hears them.

  •  i miss clinton (4.00)
    how hillary ended up a republican is just a mystery to me.

    (OPTIMISM IS THE OPIUM OF THE PEOPLE! THE HEALTHY ATMOSPHERE STINKS! LONG LIVE TROTSKY!)

    by BiminiCat on Wed Aug 17, 2005 at 01:08:00 PM PDT

    •  Right (none)
      I often wonder if Clinton would swing vocally left if he didn't feel accountable to Hillary, with her election at stake. It's too bad, because he could continue to be a tremendous leader, but they're always shushing him so he doesn't out-charisma his peers (Gore '00) or spouse.

      "Nature favors the apt, not the strong or the weak." Louis Sullivan

      by Lilibeth on Wed Aug 17, 2005 at 01:16:45 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  good old days, defined: (4.00)
    having a President with a brain.

    "Every act of becoming conscious is an unnatural act." - Adrienne Rich

    by marjo on Wed Aug 17, 2005 at 01:10:31 PM PDT

  •  Any good resources out there... (none)
    My knowledge level of Clinton and Bosnia is low. Does anyone have any good links or suggestions of resources where I can shore up? I little history and political fact and commentary...

    My views do not represent those of the United States Air Force. (Pfft. If only they did.)

    by guppymoo on Wed Aug 17, 2005 at 01:11:14 PM PDT

  •  I'm imagining ... (4.00)
    .... what would have happened if, in the wake of Lewinsky, Clinton had said something to the effect of "I have to get on with my life," which, if you think about it, makes a hell of a lot more sense in that context. Not only did the repugs obstruct his military policies, but they (and the press) currently cut Bush more slack about a war than they cut Clinton for a blowjob (or two. or ten. whatever). It's all the same ... missing documents (Roberts' affirmative action file), staff "irregularities," controversial uses of force, but the cons stayed on Clinton's case for every single one, while most of the Dems simply sit there. Whoever declared "If you can't say anything nice, don't say anything at all" was NOT talking about politics!

    "Nature favors the apt, not the strong or the weak." Louis Sullivan

    by Lilibeth on Wed Aug 17, 2005 at 01:14:02 PM PDT

  •  Someone needs to tell them about all this over at (none)
    Someone needs to tell them about all this over at The Conservative Voice. http://www.theconservativevoice.com/articles/article.html?id=7548 Check out this nonsense: "Liberals Hate Freedom, Not War" "When Clinton later sought NATO military action in the former Yugoslavia, intervening in behalf of the desperate Bosnian Muslims who were being slaughtered in a ruthless campaign of ethnic cleansing by the Serbs, most Conservatives did not protest" Assholes, pure and simple.
  •  But 9/11 changed everything (none)
    Now we can go to foolhearty wars with no exit strategy and it makes Republicans vewy, vewy happy.

    Repeat after me, 9/11.

  •  Hannity ought to have... (none)
    ...his lying tongue cut out--short of that, someone should stuff his own words back down his throat.  HEY colmes I'M TALKING TO YOU!    Charley Rangell you too pal.
  •  My favorite... (4.00)
    Bush quote of all time is not one of his stupid miscues, but this:
    October 3, 2000

    MODERATOR: New question.  How would you go about as president deciding when it was in the national interest to use U.S. force, generally?

    BUSH: Well, if it's in our vital national interest, and that means whether our territory is threatened or people could be harmed, whether or not the alliances are -- our defense alliances are threatened, whether or not our friends in the Middle East are threatened.  That would be a time to seriously consider the use of force.  Secondly, whether or not the mission was clear.  Whether or not it was a clear understanding as to what the mission would be.  Thirdly, whether or not we were prepared and trained to win.  Whether or not our forces were of high morale and high standing and well-equipped.  And finally, whether or not there was an exit strategy.  I would take the use of force very seriously.  I would be guarded in my approach.  I don't think we can be all things to all people in the world.  I think we've got to be very careful when we commit our troops.  The vice president and I have a disagreement about the use of troops.  He believes in nation building.  I would be very careful about using our troops as nation builders.  I believe the role of the military is to fight and win war and therefore prevent war from happening in the first place.  So I would take my responsibility seriously.  And it starts with making sure we rebuild our military power.  Morale in today's military is too low.  We're having trouble meeting recruiting goals.  We met the goals this year, but in the previous years we have not met recruiting goals.  Some of our troops are not well-equipped. I believe we're overextended in too many places.  And therefore I want to rebuild the military power.  It starts with a billion dollar pay raise for the men and women who wear the uniform.  A billion dollars more than the president recently signed into law.  It's to make sure our troops are well-housed and well-equipped.  Bonus plans to keep some of our high-skilled folks in the services and a commander in chief that sets the mission to fight and win war and prevent war from happening in the first place.


    The irony in this one statement makes me want to cry my eyes out.  Am I the only one who feels this way?
  •  No *AMERICANS* KIA (none)
    I fought hard for Gore in '00 and Kerry in '04, believing Bush by far the GREATER of 2 Evils, and one of the reasons I have no trouble calling Gore and Kerry evil, however very much Lesser, is that Clinton's Bombing Campaign May Have Been a War Crime.

    Lots of speculation underlies that possibility; mainly, that an aerial campaign would result in more civilian loss of life than a ground campaign.  

    There probably was no other way to do it.  The presumption of Empire (and we are an Empire, the Democrats are just more humane about it) is that Our People Are Worth More Than Their People.  Clinton never could have gotten any support for a ground campaign, and, as I already implied, I'm not sure that a ground campaign would have been less deadly in the end than an aerial campaign.  

    My point is -- even victory in a just war is a time for grieving, not crowing.  Lots of people, lots of civilians, died.

    That said, I look forward to the 2006 Democratic House impeaching Bush and Cheney for lying to the American people and to Congress about fictitious national security threats in order to commit horrendous war crimes in order to cause rampant chaos that in no serves American self-interest or any other humane interest, and I look forward to the 2007 Democratic Congress impeaching the criminals, and I look forward to the Supreme Court swearing in President Pelosi in 2007.

  •  My favorite (4.00)
    "Explain to the mothers and fathers of American servicemen that may come home in body bags why their son or daughter have to give up their life?"
    --Sean Hannity, Fox News, 4/6/99

    Yes, please, get on your bike, head on down the road, and explain yourself George.  

  •  bosnia or kosovo? (none)
    the hannity quote is dated 1999, so that would have to be kosovo, not bosnia.  similarly, the karen hughes for dubya quote would have been around that time, not in the mid-90s, so that's probably kosovo.  and i think the delay quote refers to kosovo as well.

    we'd better decide now if we are going to be fearless men or scared boys.
    — e.d. nixon, montgomery improvement association

    by zeke L on Wed Aug 17, 2005 at 01:46:09 PM PDT

  •  Cindy vigils tonite (none)
    Cut and paste for signs, fliers, etc.

    And don't just hand out to your friends.  Make sure the media sees it.

  •  I Sent a Copy to sean hackity (none)
    With a sweet note.  I sure hope he enjoys it.  I'll be sending this to quite a few people, each with a personal note.
  •  CNN's Wolf Blitzer harkens back to the old days (4.00)
    I may be stretching the O/T guidelines a little but I thought that this was worth mentioning. On today's edition of CNN's The Situation Room Wolf Biltzer did a story on the DOD Able Danger Report. Although he did talk about the actual Intel report in question and even interviewed the Army Col. who has went public on how it was blocked by DOD lawyers the main thrust of his story seemed to be an intel report from 1996. That intel said that allowing OBL to move from Sudan to Afghanistan could create problems for the US in the long term.

    Although it was never said nor was blame assigned, what I was left with, as I'm sure was true with a lot of viewers, was the impression that the Al Queada threat was all Clinton's fault.

    I fired off the following LTE to The Situation Room.

    Just watched your story on the Situation Room about the Army intel report (Able Danger) in 2000 that the Al Queada hijackers responsible for 9/11 were identified and, if I heard right, that report was blocked from going any further by DOD lawyers. It was also reported that the 9/11 commission was also notified of the existence of this Intel but apparently decided not to include it in their report.

    What bothers me about the story is that Wolf Blitzer immediately jumped back to 1996 and the Clinton administration's handling of the Osama Bin Laden move from Sudan to Afghanistan citing an Intel report that said such a move would be bad for the US in the long term.

    This is only remotely connected to this story. All that it really says is that we have been dealing with this hostile group of criminals for a long time. The geo-political climate is much different today in the US than it was almost ten years ago but Wolf decided not to mention that.

    The impression I and I'm sure most of your viewers were left with was that this whole mess is really Clinton's fault.

    Shouldn't the story be more about why this Army intel was not followed up on. Granted it did occur late in the Clinton Administration but from what I have read the Bush administration was strongly advised of the Al Queada threat during the transition of power in late 2000 and I'm sure were aware of, if not of this specific intel, the Army and FBI's strong concerns about a US Al Queada Cell.

    I for one would much rather see Wolf do a investigative story on how this specific Army Intel as well as other DOD/CIA/FBI intel that have been made public were mishandled by this administration in the months leading up to 9/11. Now that would be a real story!!!

  •  "Funny thing is,... (none)
    "...we won that war without a single killed in action."

    Hmmm, might want to change that to "...a single US military person killed in action".

    Speaking of quotes, got any from the Clinton Admin. defending their unilateral decision to go into Bosnia (a decision I still think was the right thing to do) or on the tens of thousands of civilians who died there due to collateral effects of bombing or the inaction of the U.S., U.N. and NATO while the Serbs cleansed entire regions?

    "Good old days"? "Funny thing"? Interesting word choices...

    •  Why don't you google and provide the quotes (none)
      yourself?
    •  As a native of Sarajevo (none)
      your comments brought some reflection.

      I love Clinton. I was at one of his rallies in 92, cheering him on. And although I thought he was an idiot to allow himself to be compromised in such stupid matter and ruin his legacy, I've always respected him and miss him terribly.

      That being said, the consequences of the NATO bombings there are still being felt by the people there, every day. What the war did to this once wonderful city is a tragedy, but the NATO war has caused the people to suffer even today.

      I was already in the US when the war broke out, but my family was still in Sarajevo at the time. It was horrible. The front line was right in front of the windows of my old apartment building. Serb tank would come every day to shoot at the executive parliament building. All windows went out the first day. People died on steets while taking out trash and trying to pick up some milk from the downstairs deli. They hid in basements, cooked on homemade fire, and learned how to make homemade bread because you could not go out for the fire of snipers getting you.

      After a lifetime's worth of work and dedication, my family, who has had roots in the city for a century and was a part of intellectual circles, has lost everything. All gone in an instant - your home, your savings, your life. It's all gone in a puff of smoke. hey were forced to flee for their lives and came to the US as refugees, to join me as part of family reunion.

      The senseless war, caused by god knows what, has changed the people's lives forever. I wait with baited breath to see the day Karadzic and Mladic will be brought to justice. I don't support death penalty, but those would be the definite exceptions.

      If something had only been done at the beginning. If someone had only not waited (or allowed) the tragedy to get where it got.

      When NATO got involved, it was almost too little, too late. The lives had already been shattered. The belongings had already been lost. But since the war, the rate of leukemia is catastrophically high. Not only do ordinary people get it, not only do SFOR troops get it, but little kids contract it a few years after birth. All sorts of strange flus and illnesses come around. People fall to "speedy cancer" (the first time I've ever heard of something like that in my life). In short, those consequences will be felt for a long time to come.

      No war is good. No war comes at no expense. Every war wrecks people's lives, their livelihoods, their futures, their dreams. You can have all the statistics you want. But when you come down to the level of real people who live at the place you just bomb, things get a bit more real. And one becomes a lot more apprehensive. And you start having a whole new appreciation and respect for those who are really able to conduct true diplomacy without firing a single bullet. For nothing else will prevent lives ruined and dreams shattered.

      Now back to regularly scheduled programming. :)

  •  Use those quotes!!! (none)
    We should definitely make placards of those quotes for use in the anti-war protests. Make sure they are attributed to the Conservatives who said them.

    Can you impagine Cindy Sheehan's group waving banners with DeLay, Hannity, Scarborough, Hughes and Bush senior quotes on them!!! It may stop those counter-protestors in their tracks.

  •  CONCERNS THAT BUSH IS "LOSING IT" (none)
    http://www.capitolhillblue.com/artman/publish/article_7218.shtml

    "Buy beleaguered, overworked White House aides enough drinks and they tell a sordid tale of an administration under siege, beset by bitter staff infighting and led by a man whose mood swings suggest paranoia bordering on schizophrenia. They describe a President whose public persona masks an angry, obscenity-spouting man who berates staff, unleashes tirades against those who disagree with him and ends meetings in the Oval Office with 'Get out of here!'

    In fact, George W. Bush's mood swings have become so drastic that White House emails often contain 'weather reports' to warn of the President's demeanor. 'Calm seas' means Bush is calm while 'tornado alert' is a warning that he is pissed at the world.

    Decreasing job approval ratings and increased criticism within his own party drives the President's paranoia even higher. Bush, in a meeting with senior advisors, called Senator Majority Leader Bill Frist a 'god-damned traitor' for opposing him on stem-cell research. 'There's real concern in the West Wing that the President is losing it,' a high-level aide told me recently.

    'I was really very unsettled by him and I started watching everything he did and reading what he wrote and watching him on videotape. I felt he was disturbed,' (psychiatrist) Dr. Justin Frank said. 'He fits the profile of a former drinker whose alcoholism has been arrested but not treated.'  Dr. Frank's conclusions have been praised by other prominent psychiatrists, including Dr. James Grotstein, Professor at UCLA Medical Center, and Dr. Irvin Yalom, MD, Professor Emeritus at Stanford University Medical School."

    •  Hmmmm (none)
      Wonder what we could all do to finally push him over the edge.  Make his own party pull the plug on him...

      I will fight them every step of the way if they try to dictate their moral convictions to all Americans in the name of 'conservatism.' --Goldwater, 1981

      by John H on Wed Aug 17, 2005 at 03:05:50 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  bad source (none)
      I have found capitolhillblue to be very unreliable.  I think they spread rumors without confirmation and they often post things that are never substantiated.
  •  Perfect example? (4.00)

    Bring Them Home. Now.

    by ladydawg on Wed Aug 17, 2005 at 02:37:41 PM PDT

  •  It would make (none)
    a nice commercial to start running in prep for  2006.. they will have to go on the defensive and thats where they get will get caught in their lies, which then can be used in a new commercial. You have to hava many fronts going on with these barbarians.
  •  We never lost a single man (none)

    Defending bad taste and liberalism since 2005.

    by jurassicpork on Wed Aug 17, 2005 at 03:44:04 PM PDT

  •  Through the Looking Glass (4.00)
    We've fallen down a rabbit hole.

    If 9/11 changed everything, then Clinton was right & the uglies should be making statements to that effect soon?  Santorum?  The podium is this way....DeLay? Lott?....er, Gov Bush?

    The concept of war is outdated. Dalai Lama

    by x on Wed Aug 17, 2005 at 04:29:59 PM PDT

  •  how ironic (none)
    It's funny how people's views change when the shoe is on the other foot. Bush might want to take a look at his own quote from that time. And for Mr. Delay, you might think Clinton was unclear about his intentions but did he lie to get us involved?
  •  perpective, war or game (none)
    If a side does not lose people then it is not a war, it is a game.
  •  But this was before they reformed! (none)

    Much like George Bush before he found Jesus, you have to remember that all these comments were from the bad old days of the Republican Party. This was back before they realized how fun and easy it is to build your own empire. Not to mention the glamour involved. All it costs is a few thousand lives! (Note to customers: Foreign lives not included in advertised price.)

    Bitter sarcasm aside, there is something which kind of bothers me about this entry. When did it become wrong to change your mind every now and then? We all saw what happened to Kerry. Now, I know these guys had a "change of heart" that would (very) charitably be called disingenous, but still. To listen to the punditry tell it these days, changing your mind on almost anything is about as morally permissible as emptying an assault rifle into a playground full of schoolkids. Doesn't this bother anyone else?

  •  When Pubs Aren't Involved (none)
    Good things happen.

    Nothing says 'watch out!' like an elephant gone rogue.

    by cskendrick on Wed Aug 17, 2005 at 06:19:35 PM PDT

  •  ..and Impeachment (none)
    You could also put together a list of quotes by republicans in their role as the holy guardians of the constitution as they sought impeachment against Clinton.

    Remember all the rationales the republicans used for impugning Clinton during the impeachment? Those same 'standards' would be overwhelming damning in the context of the current administration. Where are our protectors of the consitution now?

  •  Email that I Sent out to my Address Book (none)
    Please feel free to share this message and the message of "What Noble Cause?" with your family, friends and loved ones. It is an important question that deserves an honest answer.

    There are poeple who are against war. Any war. All war. Then there are people who will suppport a war for a Noble Cause. And I guess there are some people who will support a war for no good reason, not many, but I am sure they exist. But mostly, it is one of two categories... against all war, will support for a Noble Cause.

    Which one are you?  No need to answer aloud. It is not the point of this Email. Cindy Sheehan's son, Casey, died fighting the War in Iraq and George Bush told Cindy Sheehan that her son died for a Noble Cause. Cindy, the grieving mother, accepted that comment. Cindy Sheehan, like most Americans, will support a war for a Noble Cause. The problem with the President's comment, is that the Noble Cause has become a moving target. Ask yourself, what is the Noble Cause for which we are fighting?

    9/11?
    Al Qaida?
    bin Laden?
    WMDs?
    Freedom?
    Christianity?

    Cindy Sheehan just wants THE answer to "What Noble Cause?". Not a moving target, not reasons that have been proven false, and certainly not to be smeared for asking. Cindy Sheehan wants an honest answer to an important question. For what Noble Cause did Casey and over 1800 other young Americans give their lives. Cindy Sheehan is not asking too much. She is asking for an answer she deserves. What Noble Cause? All Americans deserve an answer to that question. "What Noble Cause?".<P>

    Lest we forget too soon, here are some quotes from Republicans during the when President Clinton committed troops to Bosnia less than 10 years ago: (Courtesy www.dailykos.com)

        "You can support the troops but not the president."
        --Rep Tom Delay (R-TX)

        "Explain to the mothers and fathers of American servicemen that may come home in body bags why their son or daughter have to give up their life?"
        --Sean Hannity, Fox News, 4/6/99

        "[The] President . . . is once again releasing American military might on a foreign country with an ill-defined objective and no exit strategy. He has yet to tell the Congress how much this operation will cost. And he has not informed our nation's armed forces about how long they will be away from home. These strikes do not make for a sound foreign policy."
        --Sen. Rick Santorum (R-PA)

        "American foreign policy is now one huge big mystery. Simply put, the administration is trying to lead the world with a feel-good foreign policy."
        --Rep Tom Delay (R-TX)

        "If we are going to commit American troops, we must be certain they have a clear mission, an achievable goal and an exit strategy."
        --Karen Hughes, speaking on behalf of George W Bush

        "Victory means exit strategy, and it's important for the President to explain to us what the exit strategy is."
        --Governor George W. Bush (R-TX)<P>

    The ending of the bloody genocide that engulfed Bosnia was a Noble Cause. The young Americans that risked their lives knew, understood and accepted that Noble Cause. Funny thing is, we won that war without a single killed in action. Not one single killed in action. And the soldiers, American and the World had the answer to the nagging question. What Noble Cause?

    Please feel free to share this message and the message of "What Noble Cause?" with your family, friends and loved ones. It is an important question that deserves an honest answer.

    Rush's Response to "Jesus is a Liberal": He is a Jew too, big deal.

    by Random Excess on Wed Aug 17, 2005 at 06:39:55 PM PDT

  •  Wow, (none)
    if only George Bush could hear himself now. He could benefit from his own advice years ago. I wish the talking heads would flash those words across the screen every time one of authors of those comments appears on their show.

    I'd like to hear their explanations now --DeLay, Santorum, Hannnity, Limbaugh, Coulter, the whole bunch.

  •  Thanks for digging all this up and (none)
    compiling for us.  I filed this one to pull out later on those rare occasions that I'm willing to engage in "debate" with CONservatives or RepubliCONs.

    "If any question why we died, tell them because our fathers lied." -- "Epitaphs of the War" Rudyard Kipling

    by MamaBear on Wed Aug 17, 2005 at 08:18:06 PM PDT

  •  Should seem familiar. (none)
    After all, the left's reading verbatim from the same playbook.

    And where's Radovan Karadzic, by the way?

  •  Europeans and Kosovo (none)
    Albanian-Americans all over the United States came out to show their strong support for General Clark in the primaries, believing that his efforts are what stopped the genocide of their people.  Clark has been awarded more medals and honors from European governments (he's been knighted by England, for instance) than anyone since Eisenhower.  Are there times to go to war when they don't involve our national security?  In my opinion, yes, there are.
  •  Those Darn NeoCon Peaceniks (none)
    I remember those days:

    Repubs blasting "Kumbiya" from their Lexus's Stereo (with the windows rolled up tight until they cleared the city, and reached the safety of their house on HuggyBear Lane).

    Neocons disrupting the Saturday luncheon at "The Club" with their chants of "Power to Rich People!" and "Make Mergers, Not War!".

    WingNuts selling their Lockheed stock long, just to "Stick it to the Man!".

    Wag the dog!

    The news happens 3 hours sooner on the "left coast"

    by bleeding blue on Wed Aug 17, 2005 at 11:11:15 PM PDT

  •  Yes the Great ol' Days (none)
    Bill Clinton was President.
    We had peace in the world.
    We had a REAL Economy.
    People really liked Clinton.

    Boy...Have the mighty have fallen.

  •  The next step... (none)
    What we really need to do here is put quotes side by side - what they said then vs. what they said now.  It really could be a great ad run by moveon.org or something around election time.  (Going along with the whole Iraq is the issue for 2006 thing) Hell we could even throw that flip-flopper stuff back at them.

    Take your country back one dollar at a time at BuyBlue.org

    by Raven Brooks on Wed Aug 17, 2005 at 11:28:23 PM PDT

  •  This list of quotes should be credited... (none)
    to the anonymous Kettering, Ohio resident who sent an open letter to Sen. Mike DeWine in USA Today dated July 29, 2005...

    https:/ssl.capwiz.com/usatoday/bio/userletter?id=456&letter_id=441145621&content_dir=congr essorg

    I admire Kos for all the work he's done, but credit should be given where due.

    Like everyone and their mother, I have a blog too - www.moxiegrrrl.com

    by MoxieGrrrl on Thu Aug 18, 2005 at 12:05:11 PM PDT

  •  making a video using these comments (none)
    Not sure if anyone's still reading this thread, but...

    After stewing over these quotes for a few days, I've decided to make a short film based on them.  

    If you are in the Los Angeles area and would like to help, send me an email.  If we make something powerful that's a minute or two long, people will email it around and it could have the effect of the full-page ad that some people have mentioned.  

    I would also like to reiterate the calls for sources for these quotes if anyone would like to help me dig them up.  

    Yours,
    archibald

    •  Just happened to see your comment (none)
      Don't know if this will help, but the video linked in this diary is pretty good and something similar might be good. Pictures and quotes interspersed with some music. Googling images of the speakers could get you some good pictures.

      Thought I saw the quotes listed somewhere else...

      If I run across them again, I'll post back here.

      A True US Patriot realizes if the rights of one are violated, the rights of all are at risk...

      by SisTwo on Mon Aug 22, 2005 at 04:16:34 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Just Wrote to Countdown... (none)
    and sent the quotes with a suggestion that they find video of these quotes. I hope they bite.

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