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Not Your Father's Anti-War Movement


This is definitely not your father's anti-war movement.

Unlike Vietnam, opposition to the war in Iraq is not being driven by the "make love, not war" crowd. Indeed, a growing number of conservative voices are being raised -- and asking whether the ongoing disaster in Iraq is draining precious resources from the war on terror (remember that?) and efforts to secure the homeland. So this is not war vs peace; it's war vs security.

The most surprising of these voices belongs to Mr. "Freedom Fries" himself, Rep. Walter Jones (R-NC). After being a staunch supporter of the war -- "There is no question," he said in November 2002, "that Saddam Hussein is a threat to the security of not only our nation, but of every nation across the globe" -- Jones now believes we went to war "with no justification". He even voted for the Woolsey Amendment, which calls on President Bush to develop an exit strategy as soon as possible. Here's what he said [PDF] on the floor of the House in support of the Amendment:

I believed when I voted 2 years ago to commit the troops that I was making my decision on facts. Since that time, I have been very disappointed in what I have learned about the justification for going into Iraq. Afghanistan, absolutely. We should be there. We should probably have more troops. But we cannot have more troops when they are in Iraq.
So he voted "yes" while 79 Democrats -- including Nancy Pelosi -- voted "no".

If Newt and Hillary coming together to protect the world from illegible prescriptions was a match made in photo op heaven, then how about the visual of Rep. Barbara Lee (the only member of Congress to vote against giving President Bush carte blanche to respond to terrorists in the days following 9/11) joining forces with Rep. "Freedom Fries" to send a message to the White House: bring the troops home.

Is Jones -- along with fellow anti-war conservatives such as Rep. Howard Coble, Bill Buckley, and former Rep. Doug Bereuter -- like the canary in the coal mine?

Perhaps Dick Cheney got it half right: maybe something is in its "last throes"... but it's definitely not the Iraqi insurgency.