Rep. Carter, et al, On Petraeus

Posted in Around The Nation, Around The State, Congress at 2:00 pm by wcnews

From the KDH, Carter: Petraeus gave ‘honest assessment’ of progress in Iraq. Why does Carter have to say that Petraeus gave an honest report? Shouldn’t we be able to assume that a military man going before Congress will be honest?

U.S. Rep. John Carter, R-Round Rock, said he wasn’t surprised by most of what Gen. David Petraeus told Congress on Monday.


“He was making these assessments based on ground assessments – not political,” Carter said.

Although Carter sat in on most of Petraeus’ testimony at the Capitol and watched the remainder on television, he said he could not speak to specifics regarding troop withdrawal, noting it was difficult to see the lists and charts that Petraeus used in his presentation.

Carter sticking blindly to the party line is not new, or surprising. To read a more “reality based” assessment of yesterday’s testimony EOW recommends this article from McClathchy, What Crocker and Petraeus didn’t say.

The Bush administration’s top two officials in Iraq answered questions from Congress for more than six hours on Monday, but their testimony may have been as important for what they didn’t say as for what they did.

A chart displayed by Army Gen. David Petraeus that purported to show the decline in sectarian violence in Baghdad between December and August made no effort to show that the ethnic character of many of the neighborhoods had changed in that same period from majority Sunni Muslim or mixed to majority Shiite Muslim.

Neither Petraeus nor U.S. Ambassador Ryan Crocker talked about the fact that since the troop surge began the pace by which Iraqis were abandoning their homes in search of safety had increased. They didn’t mention that 86 percent of Iraqis who’ve fled their homes said they’d been targeted because of their sect, according to the International Organization for Migration.

Reaction from the Austin area Congressional delegation:

‘The president’s surge is as successful as his boast to capture Osama bin Laden “dead or alive.” Congress must respond to the president’s propaganda surge with a truth surge that reminds America of repeated false cries of “progress.” ‘

Rep. Lloyd Doggett, D-Austin


‘We’ve seen many challenges in Iraq, made many mistakes and sacrificed many lives, but our goal of a stable Iraq which can be an ally in the global war on terrorism must never be diminished. We cannot walk away from our goal of a stable Iraq because of political expediency.’

Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison, R-Texas

San Antonio area Congressional delegation here.

“How long will it take the Iraqi government to achieve enough progress so that a complete withdrawal of U.S. forces is feasible?” asked Rep. Solomon Ortiz, a member of the House Armed Services Committee.

“Congress is left asking this question over and over again — with no answer,” Ortiz, D-Corpus Christi, said after Petraeus testified. “We are stuck there. We are spending $13 billion a month.”

Houston area delegation here:

Rep. Michael McCaul, a Republican who represents western Harris County, said the drawdown — and the success of the surge — could buy the administration more time for its strategy in Iraq. “I think the results coming in have given the American people a sense of optimism that we can achieve our goals over there,” McCaul said.

Think again.

Leave a Comment

You must be logged in to post a comment.