Monday, November 13, 2006
Levin says he'll push for change of course in Iraq
WASHINGTON (CNN) -- Michigan Sen. Carl Levin, the Democrat who is set to become chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee in January, said Monday his initial goal will be to pressure President Bush to change course in Iraq.
The senator's comments are a strong indication the Democrats plan to aggressively push for change in Iraq when they take control of both chambers of congress in January.
"The first priority would be to find a way forward to change the course in Iraq. That's the message that came through so clearly and powerfully last Tuesday from the American people," Levin told reporters in a press conference. "Most Democrats share the view that we should pressure the White House to commence the phased redeployment of U.S. troops from Iraq in four to six months -- to begin that phased redeployment and thereby to make it clear to the Iraqis that our presence is not open-ended and that they must take and make the necessary political compromises to preserve Iraq as a nation."
Levin also said the Iraqi's are responsible for the future of the war torn country.
"We have given them the opportunity, at huge cost of blood and treasure, to have a nation, should they choose it," Levin said. "But it is up to them, not us, not our brave and valiant troops -- it's up to the Iraqi leadership: Do they want a civil war or do they want a nation?"
-- CNN Ticker Producer Alexander Mooney
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