Quotes - Repeat Offender (Commanders and Generals)
"In my line of work you gotta keep repeating things over and over and over again for the truth to sink in, to kinda catapult the propaganda." - Dubya, May 24, 2005

Commanders and Generals
This repeat offense features Dubya essentially abdicating reponsibility for all operational details (in particular, determining troop levels and deciding when troops can be brought home) to his commanders/generals on the ground in Iraq.

  1. In terms of whether or not, you know, the configuration of our force and who ought to be fighting where, that's going to be up to the generals. (May 8, 2003)
  2. I said that we're going to bring our troops home starting next year? What I said is that we'll match the security needs with the number of troops necessary to secure Iraq. And we're relying upon our commanders on the ground to make those decisions. (Nov. 20, 2003)
  3. I'm going to listen to the generals who say, Mr. President, we've got we need more, we need less, we've got exactly the right number. They will tell me the number. (Nov. 21, 2003)
  4. No, let me finish. Let me finish, please, sir. Thank you, though. We will stay there until the job is completed and our commanders on the ground tell us. (Aug. 6, 2004)
  5. And so the answer to your question is, when our generals on the ground and Ambassador Negroponte tells me that Iraq is ready to defend herself from these terrorists, that elections will have been held by then, that there's stability and that they're on their way to you know, a nation of that's free. That's when. (Oct. 1, 2004)
  6. I remember sitting in the White House, looking at those generals, saying, do you have what you need in this war? Do you have what it takes? I remember going down in the basement of the White House the day we committed our troops as last resort looking at Tommy Franks and the generals on the ground, asking them, do we have the right plan with the right troop level? And they looked me in the eye and said, yes, sir, Mr. President. Of course, I listened to our generals. That's what a President does. (Oct. 9, 2004)
  7. Some Americans ask me, if completing the mission is so important, why don't you send more troops? If our commanders on the ground say we need more troops, I will send them. (Jun. 28, 2005)
  8. The troop levels in Iraq will be decided by commanders on the ground. (Sep. 12, 2005)
  9. I don't want them to come home without having achieved victory, and we've got a strategy for victory. And the commanders will make the decision. See, that's what the people want. The people don't want me making decisions based upon politics. They want me to make decisions based upon the recommendation from our generals on the ground. And that's exactly who I'll be listening to. (Nov. 29, 2005)
  10. I will make decisions based upon the level of troops based upon the recommendations by the commanders on the ground. If they tell me we need more troops, we'll provide more troops. If they tell me we've got sufficient level of troops, that will be the level of troops. If they tell me that the Iraqis are ready to take more and more responsibility and that we'll be able to bring some Americans home, I will do that. (Nov. 29, 2005)
  11. I want our troops to come home. But I don't want them to come home without having achieved victory, and we've got a strategy for victory. And the commanders will make the decision. ...And so our objective in Iraq is to win. And we will make our decisions based upon primarily victory, and, second, whether or not the commanders think we can achieve that victory and what the - with a certain troop level. (Nov. 29, 2005)
  12. We have an objective in Iraq, and as we meet those objectives, our commanders on the ground will determine the size of the troop levels. (Dec. 19, 2005)
  13. As the Iraqis are able to take more of the fight to the enemy, our commanders on the ground will be able to make a different assessment about the troop strength. And I'm going to continue to rely upon those commanders, such as General Casey, who is doing a fabulous job and whose judgment I trust, and that will determine his recommendations will determine the number of troops we have on the ground in Iraq. (Jan. 1, 2006)
  14. Later this year, if Iraqis continue to make progress on the security and political sides that we expect, we can discuss further possible adjustments with the leaders of a new government in Iraq. But my decisions will be based upon conditions on the ground and the recommendation of our commanders. (Jan. 4, 2006)
  15. And with more Iraqi forces demonstrating the capabilities needed to achieve victory, our commanders on the ground have determined that we can decrease our combat forces in Iraq from 17 to 15 brigades by the spring of 2006. That's what they've decided. And when they decide something, I listen to them. (Jan. 10, 2006)
  16. Now, I want to emphasize something to you, you heard me say our commanders on the ground said, you see, sometimes in the political process people feel beholden to polls and focus groups. You don't have to worry about me. I'm going to be listening to the people that know what they're talking about, and that's the commanders on the ground in Iraq. They'll make the decisions. (Jan. 23, 2006)
  17. Our strategy in Iraq is, as the Iraqis stand up, we'll stand down. Troop levels on the ground will be decided by commanders on the ground not by politicians in Washington, D.C. (Feb. 24, 2006)
  18. Bob, the decisions about our troop levels will be made by General Casey and the commanders on the ground. ...I will make decisions on force levels based upon what the commanders on the ground say. (Mar. 21, 2006)
  19. I'm going to make my decisions based upon the recommendations of our generals on the ground. They're the ones who decide how to achieve the victory I just described. They're the ones who give me the information. (Apr. 6, 2006)
  20. We're making progress on all fronts. But as to how many troops we have there will depend upon the generals and their commanders saying, this is what we need to do the job, Mr. President, and that's the way it's going to be so long as I'm standing here as the Commander-in-Chief, which is two-and-a-half more years. (May 25, 2006)
  21. First of all, I did meet with General Casey, and I met with him because it's very important for me, as well as Secretary Rumsfeld, to meet with our commander on the ground. I've told the American people our commanders will be making the decisions as to how to achieve victory, and General Casey, of course, is the lead person. (Jun. 26, 2006)
  22. The reason why there are not fewer troops there, but are more you're right, it's gone from 135,000 to about 147,000, I think, or 140,000 something troops is because George Casey felt he needed them to help the Iraqis achieve their objective. And that's the way I will continue to conduct the war. I'll listen to generals. (Sep. 15, 2006)
Commanders and Generals > Commiserate

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