WASHINGTON - Southern Maryland's U.S. Representative, and House Majority Leader, Steny Hoyer released the following statement today following President Bush's speech on Iraq that was delivered at the Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) National Convention in Kansas City this morning:
"President Bush attempted again today to draw parallels between Iraq and past wars to earn support for his policy in Iraq. Unfortunately, the President seems only to look at what reinforces his failing strategy rather than draw the most important lessons from past conflicts.
"The President's escalation only works if the Iraqi government uses the breathing space created by American soldiers' sweat and blood to meet the political goals that are essential to creating a stable nation. Six months into the surge, the Maliki government has not done so, and even the Bush Administration is expressing doubts that they will move forward.
"If anything, an examination of history and the situation on the ground shows us the importance of creating a new direction in Iraq. We must initiate a strategic redeployment from Iraq so that we may focus our resources on the greatest danger - the war on terror - rather than keep our military mired in Iraq's sectarian war."
A transcript of the President's speech can be view on the White House website at http://www.whitehouse.gov/news/releases/2007/08/20070822-3.html .