In an odd turnabout, some Democratic “antiwar” politicians are explaining their vote against the recent “stay the course” resolution passed by Congress on the grounds that it means supporting amnesty for insurgents. “I support our troops and goals in Iraq,” says Tennessee Democrat Harold Ford, Jr., currently a congressman and a candidate for U.S. Senate, “but I will not support a resolution praising a government that wants to grant amnesty to terrorists fighting our troops. There is only one option for such people: we should hunt them down and punish them. Amnesty is not an option.” Senators Mitch McConnell (R-Kentucky) and Dick Durbin (D-Illinois) â€“ the Senateâ€™s second-ranking Democrat — agree.
If Nixon had followed this policy during the Vietnam war, we would never have negotiated with the Vietnamese and extricated ourselves from that quagmire. And what if the Iraqis resolve to “hunt down and punish” any and all American troops responsible for the killing of Iraqi civilians?
UPDATE: I see that the Iraqi Prime Minister, Nuri al-Maliki, has backed down from his offer of amnesty, doubtless in response to the political reaction in the U.S. So much for the vaunted “independence” of the Iraqi government, which is, in reality, a collection of American sock-puppets. And so much for the prospects of a negotiated settlement for this seemingly endless, futile war.