This is the new political strategy the Democrats are going to use to wind down the War in Iraq.
I understand that in politics, if factions cannot get what they want by direct means, they elect to try indirect and partial means to accomplish their goals. There is nothing necessarily wrong with this, but indirect approaches are certainly more likely to be deceptive.
In this instance, the idea is to try and limit George Bush's options on what he can do militarily. If you are person who opposes the war, the idea of "limiting George Bush's options" probably sounds like a fairly neutral way to rein in a president you perceive as having too much power. But having power and having options are not the same thing. Limiting someone's options certainly limits their power, but it does many other things as well. It is a package deal or a dirty drug, dragging other consequences along with it. Limiting George Bush's options also limits our military's options in this case. Think about that for just a moment.
It would seem that in their eagerness to limit Bush's power, the Democrats are advocating a strategy that will limit our military's flexibility. I know it doesn't look that way to them at first, but that is the natural result of the tactic. Their target is Bush (or the administration, or the neocons, or whatever formulation you favor), but they are hitting other things besides. Dare I say that they are inflicting collateral damage on our military?
I don't see any way around this description. Complaining that George Bush has done terrible things X,Y,& Z does not erase that. It might make people feel emotionally justified if they can remind themselves how many awful things their political opposition has done, but it doesn't get around the basic fact: the Democrat plan will reduce the flexibility of the military. Reducing the flexibility will not only limit our ability to win - no loss to those who believe that victory is impossible anyway - it will limit our ability to keep both American soldiers and Iraqis safe.
The consequences of political plans are not always initially apparent. I am ready to believe that many Democrats and antiwar groups which are signing on to this plan did not intend to increase the danger to our troops. Today many people pointed out that this additional danger is indeed a consequence of this tactic. Ignorance is no longer an excuse.
I have been repetitive in my claim that the Democrats are fighting a different battle, one focused on the political ground in the US. They believe that "taking this country back" (telling phrase) will go a long way toward solving our external problems. I disagree, but I can at least see the logic behind that approach. However, to fight that battle for the American political ground at the expense of our military safety is a significant step in the direction of sabotage. This is not merely an escalation in political infighting, it is a deterioration in loyalty.
Those who disagree, please take care to make a logical argument.