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What Harry Reid Doesn't Know About His Own Bill

"Exit" Amendment Would Leave Troops in Iraq Indefinitely

By Tina Richards

07/26/07 "Counterpunch" -- - I attended the MoveOn.org rally on Tuesday night where Speaker Pelosi and Leader Reid discussed how they were going to "end the war" and "bring our troops home" with the Levin-Reed Amendment. When I asked if they meant all the troops, I was quickly told to, "shut up" and muscled aside by security. A fellow Marine Mom was treated in much the same manner and we couldn't get over how much like the Republicans the "Anti-Escalation" folks were acting. (Video link below.)

I thought maybe I missed something in the Amendment and should reread it to ensure I did not miss anything. Yet an in-depth analysis of the Amendment is not needed in order to find the contradictions. A quick glance paired with recent statements made by Senator Reid prove that it holds no ambitions of easing the minds of military families and moms who want to know, "how do you choose which of our sons and daughters to abandon in Iraq?"

The Amendment provides for our troops to come home, except for the following three reasons:

(1) Protect United States and Coalition personnel and infrastructure,

(2) Provide logistical support for Iraqi security forces and to

(3) Engage in counter-terrorism operations against international terrorism groups and their local affiliates.

I had an opportunity to ask Leader Reid about how many troops will be abandoned in Iraq. He bluntly stated, "we haven't spoken to the military yet, at that this stage we don't know."

We don't know? They have pushed and prodded for this Amendment and they don't know?

If Members of Congress do not have any idea how large of a future force this amendment calls for, then how can we as military families possibly support it? Senator Reid has admitted that this proposed "pull-out plan" does nothing yet leave the decision up to the military leadership, who take their direction from President Bush.

It must be made clear to the public that the Levin-Reed Amendment does not call for a specific withdrawal from Iraq nor does it seek to revamp the American mission in the region. Representatives such as Senator Reid and Speaker Pelosi who proudly boast of being men and women of peace; disgrace not only their own selves, yet also the millions of true warriors of peace in this country, when they back a plan that will leave America's future in Iraq to military generals. The Levin-Reed Amendment is nothing more than a political stunt that calls for, at best, a smaller war, not an end to the occupation which the American public and the world yearns to see.

Under the Amendment, our sons and daughters will be abandoned with no way home. Maybe if it wasn't our sons and daughters being abandoned we could join in with MoveOn and American's Against Escalation and be thankful the Democrats want some of them home. Next time you say, "support the troops," try to include all the troops.

Senator Reid and Speaker Pelosi and all of the other Democratic leadership; we plead you to push forward legislation that will bring "all" our sons and daughters home from this occupation. We cannot support an amendment that provides for leaving stranded an "unknown" amount of our troops. Until that time, the peace movement will continue to speak out against these cruel promises of withdrawing our troops. We will also continue to struggle against MoveOn.org and other such groups that blindly fall in line with the Democratic Party and their anti-escalation, not-anti-war, agenda.



You Tube Video, Tina & Grassroots America Interviews Harry Reid on the War and impeachment

Tina Richards is the director of Grass Roots America and the mother of Marine Cloy Richards.

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