Sen. Jay Rockefeller: Get out of Iraq now, we are losing there, also Afghanistan and Libya

I guess he has said some of these things before, but Dem Sen. Jay Rockefller of West Virginia, in an interview with his homestate paper, was remarkably blunt about wanting the United States to end its military role in three countries and reduce military spending. (OK, four countries. He slipped Yemen in there too.):

“The military budget needs to come under new scrutiny. When I voted for the Iraq War, it was one of the worst votes in my life… Today, I have grave misgivings about being in Iraq for another week. We should be out of Iraq this year altogether. We are not going to win. It is not in the cards. Many Asian countries have a totally tribal culture.

“It is the same thing in Afghanistan, Libya and Yemen. I didn’t object to four days of bombing in Libya. But now the CIA is on the ground. That makes me nervous. I don’t have any patience with the Libyan endeavor…

“Libya makes no sense to me. I don’t think we should be there at all. We should get out of there and we should get out of Afghanistan. We can’t win there. We can’t change the country….Do you want three failed wars in a row? I don’t want to be in those places. And it has a great deal to do with the [federal] budget.”

By the way, Rockefeller, a senator since 1985, sits on the Senate Intelligence Committee.

As he indicated, Rockefeller voted to authorize the Iraq War in 2003. And here’s what he said in October of 2002:

“There is unmistakable evidence that Saddam Hussein is working aggressively to develop nuclear weapons and will likely have nuclear weapons within the next five years… The global community — in the form of the United Nations — has declared repeatedly, through multiple resolutions, that the frightening prospect of a nuclear-armed Saddam cannot come to pass. But the U.N. has been unable to enforce those resolutions. We must eliminate that threat now, before it is too late… Saddam Hussein represents a grave threat to the United States, and I have concluded we must use force to deal with him if all other means fail.”

Hat tip: Taegan Goddard’s “Political Wire.”

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Comments (2)

  1. Submitted by Ray Schoch on 04/20/2011 - 12:46 pm.

    Apparently, Mr. Rockefeller fell under the spell of Cheney-esque propaganda, as did far too many of his colleagues. Better to come to his senses late rather than never, I suppose. At least he’s willing to admit a mistake – a rare quality in a politician.

    His use of “Asian,” while perhaps technically correct, seems a bit of a broad brush to me, but it nonetheless seems true that many (not all) Muslim countries are essentially tribal societies. We’ve demonstrated more than once that we don’t know how to deal with that sort of political organization.

  2. Submitted by Jackson Cage on 04/21/2011 - 12:41 pm.

    I’d have to ask my Senate colleagues…”is Jay Pro-America or Anti-America?” Really, I think we should hold an investigation to find out exactly WHAT his views are…the American people have a right to know.

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