We should have known it was coming. Even though the
Democratic Party rode the antiwar wave in to Congress last November they�ve
done little since to end the bloody war in Iraq.
Just last week House Democrats met to discuss how best to
halt Bush�s request to send more troops into the region but couldn�t come to an
agreement on whether or not to put any restrictions on the administration�s
plea for an additional $93 billion to continue the occupation. The only way to
stop the war, as Sen. Russ Feingold understands well, is to cease all funding
for the ongoing tragedy. But the majority of Democrats, already preparing for
the next round of elections, aren�t about to step up and represent their
Hate to say we told you so but we predicted this outcome
long ago in these pages. While some, including John Nichols at The Nation, claimed Washington was being
taken over by progressive Democrats, we knew the numbers proved otherwise.
Progressive Democrats did gain strength, however conservative pro-war Blue Dog
and DLC patrons gained the most seats in the last election cycle. Virtually all
ran on pro-war platforms -- guaranteeing that they would continue to support
Bush�s efforts to eradicate �terrorism� by terrorizing Iraqis and Afghanis
�The Blue Dogs are pretty unified in not wanting to
micromanage how the Pentagon conducts the war,� said Blue Dog Rep. John Salazar
of Colorado. �None of us will support withholding funds from troops in the
Senator Carl Levin of Michigan,
the Democratic chairman of the Senate Armed Services
Committee, also refused to block Bush�s call for additional funds by claiming
it would be �immoral� for the Democratic Party to do so. Senator Hillary
Clinton won�t apologize for giving Bush the authority to invade Iraq, nor will
Senator Dianne Feinstein acknowledge that her support for past reconstruction
funds has fattened the pockets of her husband who has large stakes in several
companies currently profiting from the war.
We may as well call all of this
what it is: a willful abandonment of ideals and purpose, which never really
existed to begin with. The Democratic Party exerts the same hawkish fervor as
the Republican Party. Indeed, they have proven that despite the overwhelming
opposition to the war nationwide they will not do a damn thing to end it.
U.S. foreign policy has not and
will not change direction as long as the Democratic Party continues to be
dominated by corporate interests and tacit compliance with the neoconservative
agenda. The antiwar movement needs to understand this reality or it is doomed
to collapse like it did under the pressure of the 2004 elections.
The time is now for us to come
together under a unified antiwar banner despite what our political leanings may
be. Liberal, radical, conservative, libertarian, it doesn�t matter. Ending the
war and our government�s imperialist polices is just that important. We may be
a minority, but we can be a successful one. Indeed, if we unite, we could have
a profound effect on our political discourse and the upcoming elections. Let�s
not wait around for either party to come to their senses. Let�s force them to.Joshua Frank is the author of Left
Out!: How Liberals Helped Reelect George W. Bush and edits BrickBurner.org.