Representative Murtha: Truth or Politics?

As Glenn Reynolds says,

“WHY IS MURTHA’S STATEMENT ON THE WAR NEWS today when he said basically the same thing a year and a half ago?
… And he’s the liberal hawk?”

More from Murtha:

Murtha said, “Obviously we have reason to be concerned about Saddam Hussein — there’s no question that he’s a real threat to us and we need to make sure he’s not developing nuclear, chemical or biological weapons to use against us or against other nations in the Middle East. We also need to make sure that Iraq does not resume Afghanistan’s former role as the host nation for terrorist training camps.

October 9, 2002

A very sharp “lance” to your usually credible newspaper for wasting space in your Aug. 22 issue on an interview with Rep. John Murtha, including the hardly newsworthy headline: “Murtha: Iraq war costs will mount.”

It was a very short trip to Iraq for Murtha. From Pittsburgh on Saturday, back to Johnstown on Wednesday p.m., with stops at Kuwait, Baghdad and Turkey. A typical congressional junket for PR rather than public purposes. First-class, at taxpayers’ expense.

More than half of his time must have been spent in travel and sleep. He certainly had no time for in-depth research and fact-finding. Everything he reports could have been gleaned from responsible U.S. news media, while here at home.

Perhaps John Murtha has again shown he is a master in the art of politics.

Pittsburg Tribune-Review
September 1, 2003

The Democrat, Representative John P. Murtha of Pennsylvania, a decorated Vietnam veteran, said that he had been misled into voting for the war by incorrect information from top administration officials and that the president had also been misled.

Mr. Murtha was joined in his call for high-level resignations by Representative Nancy Pelosi of California, the House Democratic leader.

Democrats around Capitol Hill made it clear today that they intended to step up their aggressive criticism of Bush policies in Iraq.

New York Times
September 16, 2003

It was, therefore, anything but a routine moment when the normally publicity-shy Pennsylvanian joined dovish House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) at a Sept. 16 news conference criticizing the administration’s handling of the war in Iraq and its aftermath.

Washington Post
September 27, 2003

But in this morning’s edition of the Capitol Hill newspaper, “Roll Call,” Murtha is quoted as describing the ongoing conflict in Iraq as “unwinnable,” and saying the administration doesn’t know what it’s doing there.

May 6, 2004

“So when you say, it is realistic to pull out? It would be an international disaster I think if we pulled out.”

May 11, 2004

“I would say at this point they’re beginning to see the light. Fallujah is the perfect example. Can they take over and run that place and we get out of there? If we have a few other places like that, we may be able to turn over.”

May 11, 2004

“Well, it would be disastrous if we were to leave under those circumstances without making every effort… “

May 11, 2004

Murtha defended Sen. John Kerry against attacks on his war record, and made clear that he believed that Kerry’s election was essential to progress in Iraq.

August 15, 2004

Rep. John Murtha accused the Bush administration Friday of delaying a new military call up until after the election.

“I have learned through conversations with officials at the Pentagon that at the beginning of November, 2004, the Bush Administration plans to call up large numbers of the military Guard and Reserves, to include plans that they previously had put off to call up the Individual Ready Reserve.”

September 17, 2004

Republicans accused Murtha of pulling a crass political stunt… back in May and August, 2004

National Review had pointed out Murtha’s statement on the war earlier today.

Today Representative Murtha came out with similar statements agaisnt teh War in Iraq.

More on Murtha at Mudville.

Update: (Friday, 11-18-05, 5:30 AM) This was sent to me from G. Maxwell in Texas:

Look what I found on John Murtha who voted NO on House resolution 557 on 3 -17 -2004. The resolution passed 327-93.

Here is the text of the resolution which Rep. Murtha found to be so distasteful:

States that the House of Representatives: (1) affirms that the United States and the world have been made safer with the removal of Saddam Hussein and his regime from power in Iraq; (2) commends the Iraqi people for their courage in the face of unspeakable oppression and brutality inflicted on them by Saddam Hussein’s regime; (3) commends the Iraqi people on the adoption of Iraq’s interim constitution; and (4) commends the members of the U.S. Armed Forces and Coalition forces for liberating Iraq and expresses its gratitude for their valiant service.

So he either thinks we would be: better off with Saddam still in power ( point 1), thinks the Iraqis are cowardly ( point 2), thinks the Iraqi constitution is a bad thing ( point 3), or is not grateful for the armed forces valiant service. Or as a bonus all of the above. Sounds like Michael Moore to me, show the pictures of Iraqis flying kites again.

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