Posted by Joshua Holland on October 13, 2005 at 8:10 AM.
Jim McDermott (D-WA)... is one of those guys that makes you feel a bit better about that whole mess we have in government. He gets it.
I wanted to write this piece since July, when McDermott took to the House floor to read a letter signed by 126 members of the 275-member Iraqi Parliament. It said:
As the National Assembly is the legitimate representative of the Iraqi people and the guardian of its interests, and as the voice of the people, especially with regard to repeated demands for the departure of the occupation, we note that these demands have earlier been made in more than one session but have blatantly been ignored from the Chair. Worse still is the Government's request to the U.N. Security Council to extend the presence of the occupation forces, made without consultation with the people's representative in the National Assembly who hold the right to make such fateful decisions. In line with our historic responsibility, we reject the legitimation of the occupation and we repeat our demand for the departure of the occupation forces …
McDermott complained that such calls get "nothing in the American press." He added: "Everyone should know this."
His press guy, Mike DeCesare, gave me twenty minutes with the Congressman and I took 45. He's just a good and interesting person to talk to. I transcribed the whole 45 minutes - a pain in the ass - and you can read it here.
On a more serious note, I have to say that the best exit strategy I've come across so far was proposed by that great military strategist, Fafnir:
In the middle of the night while everybody in Iraq is sleepin we pack up all our stuff, tanks, bombs, guns, tents, extra buildings and everything, and stuff it into our planes and helicopters so we can get out real fast at the drop of a hat - a fast hat.
Then we will have specially trained troops sent out to each Iraqi home with cords attached to their backs and wait until sunrise and when all the Iraqi families start to wake up yawning and stretching and so on our troops jump out waving wiggly fingers and goin "It was allllll a dream… it was alllllll a dream!"
The wiggly fingers here are very crtical here and if not done correctly could spoil everything.
Then our troops will jump back an get pulled up into the sky by the cords on their backs (remember them?) and all our guys will fly out quickly into the Persian Gulf and onto our carriers which will have been cleverly disguised as a group of banana boats from the Carribbean blown off course by prevailing winds. We will have hand-painted* signs that say "Sorry no bananas Iraqis" in case Iraqis try to buy bananas from our aircraft carriers.
When the Iraqis wake up to see the wiggly fingers and the disappeared Americans they will be confused, and then they will all go "Huh! That must have been a weird dream" an then they talk to their next-door Iraqis who say "did you have that weird dream" and they say "you mean the one where the Americans come and overthrow Saddam Hussein and first we are all happy and then we get sad and then angry and blowing things and people up?" and then they say again "Yes, that dream! I had it for the last year or so it must have been a recurring one." And they will say "Whoa weird" and "What happened to Saddam Hussein" and "He seems to be gone now! I guess we had better go build our own sovereign democratic state here, perhaps aided by the United Nations" and "Wow that sounds like a great idea!"
You can't beat that.