Skip to content

Script Notes on “The Kucinich Plan”

January 29, 2007
by

I often am asked to “give notes” (i.e., constructive criticism) on colleagues’ scripts.   So, I would like to offer the same (albeit, unsolicited) services in response to the new plan offered by Congressman Dennis Kucinich to bring about peace in Iraq.

Normally, I would hand-write my notes, but I’ll try to recreate the effect.  It’s always good to start off with the positive:

OVERALL:

Congressman, you’ve got stones.  At last, a Democrat with a bona fide plan to get out of Iraq!  No more hiding behind slogans, no more vacillating or fence-riding — here you present here some bold, consistent, rubber-meets-the-road proposals for the American people to examine.  Kudos on stepping up to the plate.  You have some innovative ideas and make a sincere attempt at a holistic, comprehensive approach. 

However, I have questions about some of the basic assumptions underlying your plan, which I note below.  I’ve snipped out chunks of text for the sake of brevity:

These are the elements of the Kucinich Plan:

1. The US announces it will end the occupation, close military bases and withdraw. … A US declaration of an intention to withdraw troops and close bases will help dampen the insurgency which has been inspired to resist AS IN “RESISTANCE FIGHTERS”? – THE GUYS WHO SET UP ROADSIDE BOMBS TO KILL OUR TROOPS AND BLOW UP MOSQUES? colonization and fight invaders REALLY? ARE YOU SAYING OUR TROOPS ARE COLONIZING INVADERS? and those who have supported US policy. SPECIFY WHICH POLICIES – LIKE DEMOCRATIC ELECTIONS?  Furthermore this will provide an opening where parties within Iraq and in the region can set the stage for negotiations towards peaceful settlement.  REALLY?  DO YOU REALLY THINK THIS WOULD BE THE CONSEQUENCE?  NOT CHAOS AND BLOODSHED?  BASED UPON WHAT HISTORICAL PRECEDENT?  IS THIS WHAT THE IRAQI GOV’T OR ITS PEOPLE ARE ASKING FOR? 

2. .US announces that it will use existing funds to bring the troops and necessary equipment home. …Money from this and other DOD accounts can be used to fund the troops in the field over the next few months, and to pay for the cost of the return of the troops…while a political settlement is being negotiated BY WHOM, WITH WHOM?—IS THERE AN EQUAL DESIRE FOR SETTLEMENT BETWEEN "THE PARTIES"?

3. Order a simultaneous return of all US contractors to the United States and turn over all contracting work to the Iraqi government. DO THE IRAQI PEOPLE WANT ALL U.S. CONTRACTORS GONE?  DO THEY HAVE ALL THE EXPERTISE TO REPLACE THEM RIGHT AWAY?

4. Convene a regional conference for the purpose of developing a security and stabilization force for Iraq. …The end of the US occupation and the closing of military bases are necessary preconditions for such a conference [editor’s emphasis].  TIMING? — WOULDN’T THIS CREATE A VACCUUM BETWEEN WHEN US MILITARY BASES ARE CLOSED AND THE ARRIVAL OF THE FORCES THEORETICALLY INITIATED BY THIS CONFERENCE?

…It is well known that while some nations may see the instability in Iraq as an opportunity…. The regional conference must include Iran, Syria, Egypt, Saudi Arabia and Jordan. AREN’T IRAN AND SYRIA IN THAT FIRST GROUP YOU MENTION?

5. Prepare an international security and peacekeeping force to move in, replacing US troops who then return home. …The UN is the only international organization with the ability to mobilize and the legitimacy to authorize troops.  SUCCESS RATE OF U.N. FORCES?  RWANDA, ANYONE?

6. Develop and fund a process of national reconciliation.

GOOD IDEA.  WE’VE SEEN THIS IS SOUTH AFRICA; WHAT WOULD IT LOOK LIKE IN ARAB AND KURDISH CULTURES?

7. Reconstruction and Jobs. Restart the failed reconstruction program in Iraq…  I DID NOT KNOW IT HAD STOPPED. BUT SHOULDN’T SECURITY COME FIRST?  IT’S HARD TO BUILD INFRASTRUCTURE WHEN IT KEEPS BEING BLOWN UP BY TERRORISTS

8. Reparations. The US and Great Britain have a high moral obligation to enable a peace process by beginning a program of significant reparations to the people of Iraq…  FRANKLY, THIS SOUNDS KINDA CRAZY, CONGRESSMAN.  IS THERE A PRECEDENT FOR THIS?

10. Iraq Economy. Set forth a plan to stabilize Iraq’s cost for food and energy, on par to what the prices were before the US invasion and occupation. This would block efforts underway EFFORTS BY WHOM? to raise the price of food and energy at a time when most Iraqis do not have the means to meet their own needs. 

11.Economic Sovereignty. Work with the world community WHO ARE “THE WORLD COMMUNITY” AND WHY SHOULD WE TRUST THEM? to restore Iraq’s fiscal integrity without structural readjustment measures of the IMF or the World Bank. NOT REALLY SURE WHAT THIS MEANS

12 .International Truth and Reconciliation. Establish a policy of truth and reconciliation between the people of the United States and the people of Iraq.  VAGUE.  AS OPPOSED TO WHAT POLICY?  ARE YOU SAYING THAT WE HAVE LIED TO THE IRAQI PEOPLE?  WOULDN’T PULLING OUT OUR TROOPS WHEN WE TOLD THEM WE WOULD SEE THINGS THROUGH (AND THE IRAQIS ASKED US TO STAY) MAKE LIES OUT OF ALL OUR PROMISES TO THEM?

Advertisements
2 Comments leave one →
  1. Tim C permalink
    January 30, 2007 11:00 pm

    Hey Duke-ray,

    Criticizing a Kusinch plan held by VERY few dems is almost too easy… Like giving notes on Senator Inhofe’s environmental plans…

    A more substantive plan was put forth by Senator Obama today:

    Instead of a timetable for leaving, he proposes a phased withdrawal of combat forces with conditions on the Iraqi government to get us to stay.

    “Should these benchmarks be met, the plan allows for the temporary suspension of this redeployment, subject to the agreement of Congress.”

    I haven’t digested it all yet,but I like what I’ve seen …and it is a much more serious plan that I’d be curious what your notes were on that…

    From either of you Strange monkeys…

  2. Duke Ray permalink
    January 31, 2007 11:31 am

    Well, in my defense, it was all I had to work with. And, say, if Kucinich prompted other presidential candidates of the Democratic Party (see how I used the “-ic” — so how I’m reaching out?! 🙂 to put forth actual plans, then kudos to Kucinich. And, seriously, he may be pretty fringey, but he’s intelletually honest — if Congress really doesn’t believe in the Surge, they shouldn’t cover their political butts with some B.S. non-binding resolution, they should grow some stones and pull the funding.

    I look forward to reading Obama’s plan soon (and not just to slam it, believe it or not), so thanks for the heads-up, Timmy!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: