Tuesday, November 28, 2006

FYI: Email from Senator Barbara Boxer...

From Senator Barbara Boxer:

I hope you enjoyed a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday surrounded by family and friends. I'm sure at some point this weekend we all thought about those who couldn't be with their loved ones because they are in Iraq in harm's way. I also know that we can never be truly at peace with ourselves until this war is over -- and most Americans agree.

On Election Day three weeks ago, the American people spoke out loud and a clear: "It's time for a change!" Yet on the most pressing issue facing our country today -- the war in Iraq -- the Bush Administration has still failed to respond.

Tell President Bush that the status quo in Iraq is completely unacceptable -- and that America is demanding change. Sign my petition today!

As you know, I voted against this misguided war. And over the nearly four years since our invasion, I have watched with frustration as President Bush has stubbornly refused to change course, even as our disastrous policy has sent us on a downward spiral into chaos in Iraq.
Our brave men and women in uniform, and the American taxpayers, are paying the price for President Bush's stubbornness -- robbing our families of the investments we must make here at home to improve their lives.

I thought we might see a change in our Iraq policy the morning after Election Day when Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld announced his resignation -- a move that was long overdue. Unfortunately, that's the only change we've seen, and it's not nearly enough.

When asked if there were lessons to be learned from Vietnam in his recent trip to that country, President Bush replied, "We'll succeed unless we quit. We tend to want there to be instant success in the world, and the task in Iraq is going to take awhile."

Does President Bush really think we would have won the Vietnam War by staying the course? President Nixon took us out of Vietnam because he knew America could not win with our brave men and women sitting in the middle of a civil war. What's more, the American people have been more than patient with the war in Iraq. In fact, by the end of November, we will have been in Iraq longer than we were in World War II.

Tell President Bush that it's time to change course in Iraq. Sign my petition today!

Even one week after Election Day, President Bush's press secretary, Tony Snow, said that we are winning in Iraq. But just look at these numbers: We have already lost 47 US soldiers in November. And 1,368 Iraqis have been killed so far this month, the deadliest month in Iraq since the Associated Press began tracking the figure in April 2005.

It's time for a change in Iraq. That's what Congress said more than a year ago, when 79 Senators -- Democrats and Republicans -- voted for a resolution saying that 2006 should be a period of "significant transition in Iraq to full Iraqi sovereignty..." The American people think so too. According to a Pew Research Poll conducted earlier this month, 56 percent of the American people think the U.S. should set a timetable for withdrawing troops from Iraq.

And the Iraqi people agree. A September poll conducted by the University of Maryland poll showed 71 percent of Iraqis want their government to ask us to leave within a year, and 78 percent believe that our presence is provoking more conflict than it is preventing.

In the absence of any policy change coming from the White House, Democrats are stepping forward to lead. I am co-sponsoring a bill authored by Senator Russ Feingold that calls for the redeployment of U.S. troops by July 1, 2007, leaving only a minimal number of personnel needed for training of Iraqi forces, targeted counterterrorism activities, and U.S. force protection.

Senator Carl Levin, the incoming Chairman of the Armed Services Committee, has laid out a plan to begin redeployment in four to six months. And Senator Joe Biden, the incoming Chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee, has proposed a political solution to create three semi-autonomous regions in Iraq and a central government to disburse oil revenues.
But we need your support to bring this desperately needed change about. I am planning to deliver this petition to the Bush Administration in the next two weeks, so please be sure to sign today!

Tell President Bush that the American people demand change in Iraq. Sign my petition now!

It's time for a change. Through their votes on November 7th, the American people made their feelings well known. Now it's time for President Bush to listen and work with the new Democratic Congress to bring about the change in Iraq that is so desperately needed. And we can't let up until he does.

In Friendship,
Barbara Boxer


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