Hare Statement on 5th Anniversary of War in Iraq
Congressman Phil Hare (D-IL) today released the following statement regarding the 5th anniversary of the war in Iraq, which began on March 19, 2003.
"As the war in Iraq enters its 6th year, it is first important that we remember the nearly 4,000 brave men and women who have made the ultimate sacrificeincluding 22 from my district.
"Our troops have performed brilliantlycapturing Saddam Hussein and helping the Iraqi people take steps toward democracy.
"But the fact remains that this misguided war has cost our nation dearly. President Bush's failed Iraq policy has left our troops stranded refereeing a religious civil war. American taxpayers are now spending $12 billion a month there at a time when our own economy is in recession.
"America's credibility in the world has been damaged. Our military has been stretched to the limit. And Al-Qaeda is resurging in Afghanistan and Pakistan.
"The President's surge was designed to reduce violence to the point where the warring factions in Iraq could reach a political settlement. That has not happened. Even General David Petraeus acknowledges that Iraqi leaders have failed to take advantage of a reduction in violence to make adequate progress toward resolving their political differences.
"Yet inexplicably, the Bush Administration has indicated that it will maintain indefinitely U.S. troop levels in Iraq at 140,000the same as in January of 2007. This plan for a war without end is simply unacceptable.
"It is time for the Iraqi's to stand up so we can stand down. We need a responsible redeployment of our troops in order to fight terrorism, rebuild our military, and begin investing in the priorities of the American people again.
"On the 5th anniversary of the war in Iraq, let's honor the sacrifice of our servicemen and women by bringing them home."