Governor Thompson The Only Candidate With Plan For Long-Term Success In Iraq
Governor Tommy G. Thompson showed Thursday night in the first Republican presidential debate that he is the only candidate in the field who has a clear and practical plan for building a politically and economically stable Iraq.
"As Americans, we have a duty to support our troops for as long as they are in the field of battle," Governor Thompson said. "At the same time, we must help build a strong political and economic infrastructure so the Iraqi government and people can succeed on their own."
Specifically, as the only candidate who is offering a comprehensive plan for long-term success, Governor Thompson believes the United States must take the following steps:
First, the Iraqi government should vote on whether they want United States in their country. If they do, we have greater world standing to be there and it further legitimizes our efforts domestically. If not, the United States should leave. Iraq has a duly elected government and we should listen to its wishes.
Second, the United States should work with Iraqi leaders to form democratically elected governments in the nation's 18 self-governing provinces that would operate under a national government. This will give Shiites, Sunnis and Kurds their own pieces of Iraq - their own land and their own say in how it is run.
Third, the United States should encourage the Iraqi government to give every Iraqi a stake in the nation's rich oil reserves. Oil revenues should be divided in thirds among the national government, the provincial governments and individual Iraq citizens. This will create great incentive for all Iraqis to protect their oil reserves, while helping ensure that their federal and provincial governments govern fairly. And it will create wealth among all levels of society, inspiring entrepreneurship and economic growth - two major keys to bringing peace to Iraq.
Taken together, these three steps will give Iraqis - both the government and its citizens - an ownership stake in their newly free nation. With this ownership will come newfound hope and opportunity in a nation too long ruled and terrorized by dictators.