John Murtha joined Timmeh this morning to talk about his plans for the Iraq war...
Russert was pushing him to bash Cheney because of the VP's obsession to link him and the Democratic Party to al-Qaeda. He did say that Dick..."didn’t blame me for at least getting the British out"
From Logan Murphy: Meet The Press - Murtha Responds
Michael O'Hanlon of the Brookings Institution and the following quote from Dick Cheney while he was in Japan last month -
"I think if we were to do what Speaker Pelosi and Congressman Murtha are suggesting, all we'll do is validate the al Qaeda strategy. The al Qaeda strategy is to break the will of the American people, knowing they can't win in a stand-up fight, try to convince us to throw in the towel and come home and then they win because we quit."
Russert - "How does it feel to be linked with Al Qaeda by the Vice President?"
Murtha - "Well, it's unfortunate that the VP doesn't have the argument - he doesn't listen to what I'm saying. We can't send troops into combat without equipment, we can't send troops into combat without training. We can't extend them past the one year boots on the ground policy they have and we can't continue to have them over there in Iraq more than a year. That's what he's not saying, and he's not saying our strategic reserve and the future threats to this country significantly increased in the last year. So he attacks my differences but he doesn't attack the policy - he doesn't talk about the policy and the results of what I'm saying."
Russert -"But you're a Marine. You like being linked with Al Qaeda?"
Murtha - "Well, they'll take care of Al Qaeda. Let me tell you this, Tim, Al Qaeda will be taken care of by the Iraqis. There are only 2000 Al Qaeda. There are Iraqis fighting Iraqis. It's a civil war between the Shia's and the Sunni and they won't negotiate. The Shia's won't negotiate with the Sunni. What I found out when I was out there the last time about a month ago. The Sunnis are not going to help in this whole process as long as the Shia control it and won't negotiate with the Sunnis. Now this may seem like an incidental point, but this is probably the most important point. They won't change their constitution to give the Sunnis some influence in this whole thing. They have to work this out themselves, we cannot do it for them."