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Senate Proceeding on Sep 20th, 2007 :: 7:57:59 to 8:14:27
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Lindsey Graham

7:44:12 to 7:57:59( Edit History Discussion )
Speech By: Lindsey Graham

Lindsey Graham

7:57:40 to 7:57:59( Edit History Discussion )

Lindsey Graham: mccain says, we need to come home with honor, equally important, we need to come home with a more secure america. i think we're on the road to bringing about withdrawal with honor and a more secure

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

7:57:59 to 7:58:09( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: america by having a more stable iraq. and the worst thing to do now is to go back to a strategy that has failed when the one that we have in place is beginning to work. i would yield the floor.

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

7:57:59 to 8:14:27( Edit History Discussion )
Speech By: Robert P. Casey, Jr.

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

7:58:09 to 7:58:24( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: a senator: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from pennsylvania. mr. casey: mr. president, i first of all want to ask unanimous consent that on monday monday, september 24, at 3:00 p.m.,

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

7:58:24 to 7:58:37( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: the senate turn to the consideration of the conference report on the water resources bill, h.r. 1495, and that the time until 5:45 p.m. be divided for debate as follows: 30 minutes under senator

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

7:58:37 to 7:58:52( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: feingold's control, with the remainder of the time under the control of the two leaders or their designees, and that at 5:45 p.m., the senate, without any intervening action or debate debate, vote on

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

7:58:52 to 7:59:07( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: passage of the conference report. the presiding officer: is there objection? without objection, so ordered.de mr. casey: mr. president, i rise today to speak about the war in iraq, and in particular,

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

7:59:07 to 7:59:18( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: to speak about an amendment we'll be voting on tomorrow, the reed- reed-levin amendment. and i want to note first of all that this amendment has been offered before. we vote ed on a similar -- on

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

7:59:18 to 7:59:31( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: similar amendments over the course of this year and i'm glad we're vote ing on it again because i think the american people time and again have told us that it's time at long last to change the course

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

7:59:31 to 7:59:47( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: in iraq and to focus on a new policy. and sometimes we talk about this amendment, we fail to mention something about the sponsors of this amendment. you're talking about two members of the united

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

7:59:47 to 7:59:59( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: states senate with broad experience in this body, tremendous years of public service, but also a lot of years on the armed services committee and other committees that have informed their judgment.

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

7:59:59 to 8:00:10( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: two members of the united states senate, jack reed and carl levin levin, have both been to iraq innumerable times and focused on a real way in helping us get this policy right. you know, when we

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:00:10 to 8:00:25( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: think about their troops and what they've contribute ed already, our troops have done everything we've asked of them. time and again, every mission, every battle that they've been in, they've done their

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:00:25 to 8:00:34( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: job. it's about time that the congress and the united states and the president of the united states, that we do our job to change the course in iraq and to focus on a new policy.| this amendment,

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:00:34 to 8:00:48( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: which i think has tremendous support in the senate -- we've already seen this before -- much more than a majority of the united states senators will vote for this amendment. i hope we can get it to 60

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:00:48 to 8:01:01( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: votes at long last. and let's talk about it for a moment. this is a very basic amendment which fundamentally says that we have to change the course in iraq, that we have to begin to redeploy our

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:01:01 to 8:01:14( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: combat forces so the iraqi forces can take over ultimately. but it also focuses in a real way on transitioning this mission. our mission should be about a couple of things and our soldiers have

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:01:14 to 8:01:30( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: already proven time and again that they do this very well. the mission should be transition to a much more focused mission. first of all, to huntown and kill terrorists in iraq. that's fundamental to our

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:01:30 to 8:01:42( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: mission. our mission has to include training of the iraqi security forces. we see report after report, especially at the level 1 of readiness, the ability for the iraqi forces to independently --

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:01:42 to 8:01:52( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: independently, without help from american forces -- take over the fight against the enemy. we've got to make sure that that training moves forward much more aggressively and much more -- in a much

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:01:52 to 8:02:04( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: more focused way than we've seen already. but that's not happening. so we need to train the iraqi security forces. and finally, we've got to make sure we protect o pur troops and their infrastructure

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:02:04 to 8:02:18( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: and also the -- the civilian personnel we have in iraq. and we've seen all -- all of those personnel doing a great job as well, from the state department and other parts of our government. but if we

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:02:18 to 8:02:33( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: can focus, as we should do, on a redeployment of our -- of our combat forces, focus on the terrorists, focus on training, and focus on diplomacy, which i'll talk about at length a little -- a few minutes

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:02:33 to 8:02:49( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: later, that has to be the -- the mission that we should -- we should focus on in iraq. and that's what reed-levin does, among other things, it focuses at long last on a mission that we know our troops can

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:02:49 to 8:03:00( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: continue to achieve but also it focuses in a real way on transitioning this mission and focusing on a redeployment of our forces, our combat forces. and i think some of what's informed the way i vote and the

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:03:00 to 8:03:13( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: way a lot of us vote is our -- is our time in iraq. i spent about a day and a half in iraq. some people may say, "well, what can you learn in a day and a half?" you learn a lot about iraq in that short

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:03:13 to 8:03:22( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: amount of time. one thing i did learn is not just in terms of the meetings when he but a good part of our time in iraq -- meetings we had, but a good part of our time in iraq, senator durbin and

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:03:22 to 8:03:33( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: i made a lot of progress. a good part of our time was spent in the green zone. and you get a sense, fleeting sense, a glimpse, but you get a sense of the insecurity of baghdad when you're outside

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:03:33 to 8:03:45( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: of that green zone. and i've heard a lot of discussions about things that have been happening in anbar and, frankly, our marines have done a great job there. and our troops have done a great job in

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:03:45 to 8:03:56( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: baghdad. but baghdad is a lot more complicated than anbar, and we should recognize that. it's a lot more difficult assignment going forward. and what do we see in baghdad? every time you leave to

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:03:56 to 8:04:09( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: go outside the green zone, you've travel in a convoy. and we were given great protection not only by -- by those who were traveling with us but also by people from the state department and others,

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:04:09 to 8:04:20( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: and we appreciated that. but you wear body armor wherever you go. inside the vehicle, outside the vehicle, you wear -- you wear a combat helmet, a kevlar helmet. you're surrounded by people with

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:04:20 to 8:04:33( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: with -- with weapons to protect you. so you get a sense of the insecurity there. and then when we were traveling to the president's house our second day there, the -- almost the entire trip to the president

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:04:33 to 8:04:43( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: -- president talibani's house, where he resides, was in a military convoy with helicopters flying over to protect us. the reason why when i got on a blackhawk helicopter to go from -- to go from the

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:04:43 to 8:04:55( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: airport to a patrol base outside of this -- outside of the city of baghdad, where our forces are doing a great job against al qaeda, what -- what did we have to do? we get into a blackhawk helicopter

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:04:55 to 8:05:07( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: and fly at a very high rate of speed over the rooftops to avoid being attacked. and we saw just -- just in the last couple of weeks what happened to a c-130 with distinguished members of the united

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:05:07 to 8:05:20( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: states senate, some of them here on the floor today, being fired upon by the enemy. you see the insecurity all around you. you see the insecurity when you're -- we were meeting at the patrol base.

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:05:20 to 8:05:32( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: 400 yards away, a missile landed and we heard the explosion just 400 yards from us. so what i'm trying to convey is the -- is the sense that we had of the insecurity of baghdad. it's a real presence

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:05:32 to 8:05:44( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: there, that feeling of insecurity. and it's a fact. and we should recognize that this mission is very difficult for our troops. and they've met every assignment. i think what we have to do is give

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:05:44 to 8:05:55( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: our troops a policy and a strategy which matches their valor. and we don't have that right yet yet, and the president i think should start acting more like a commander in chief instead of someone who's

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:05:55 to 8:06:08( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: reading talking points for his side of the argument. when i was listening to the president the other night, unfortunately what can -- what he conveyed to me was a sense that he was selling a message

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:06:08 to 8:06:23( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: instead of leaving. and i don't think he's -- i don't think he's led in a way that has brought this congress together, frankly. so it's about time that we had a mission and a strategy that matched

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:06:23 to 8:06:31( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: the -- the brilliance and the -- and the valor of our troops. when i was in iraq, we'd hear these phrases from the iraqi leaders, "we need more time, you need to be patient in america." i heard this

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:06:31 to 8:06:46( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: phrase i've never heard before, "we need strategic patience." i still don't know what that means, but the iraqi leaders were telling the political -- the political leaders were telling us that over

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:06:46 to 8:06:58( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: and over and over again. and i have to say, on behalf of the people of pennsylvania, in behalf of the 175 families who lost someone in iraq already, i have to ask these iraqi leaders, we've shown

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:06:58 to 8:07:12( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: strategic patience, whatever that means. we've shown patience and forbearance and -- and our troops and their families have sacrificed over and over again. it's about time for you, mr. or mrs. iraqi

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:07:12 to 8:07:22( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: leader, to get your act together and take over the responsibility of taking on this enemy for the next generation, taking the corruption out of your police force and governing your country so that you

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:07:22 to 8:07:35( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: can have a government of national unit. but all they asked for is patience. and whenever they -- the iraqi political leaders ask for patience, the ones who pay most of the price isn't anybody in congress,

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:07:35 to 8:07:49( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: isn't anybody in the white house. the people who pay the price are the troops and their families over and over again. so we're -- we're reaching the end of our patience i think i would s and have said

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:07:49 to 8:08:02( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: to those iraqi leaders. finally -- and i don't want to spend too much time on our trip, but finally, one of the most poignant parts of our trip and -- and it has connection and relevance to what we're

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:08:02 to 8:08:15( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: voting on -- what we voted on today and yesterday and tomorrow, is the sense you get from our troops. the bravery of those troops. troops from pennsylvania, from smallowns, in bradford county way

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:08:15 to 8:08:27( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: up in northeastern pennsylvania, troops from the inner city of -- of philadelphia who were in the same mission, sitting at the same taim table to have -- same table to have what goes for lunch over

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:08:27 to 8:08:38( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: there. very simple food that they have to eat every day. but what i got from our troops was a real sense of commitment, a real sense of -- of focus on their mission. and we've got to do everything

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:08:38 to 8:08:51( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: we can to make sure that they have the resources that they need. but a lot of our troops are being asked to referee a civil war. no american fighting man or woman has ever been asked to referee

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:08:51 to 8:09:02( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: someone else's civil war war. and we've asked them to do that. and i've heard language in this chamber -- and we've heard it from the president -- he talks about victory, victory, victory. he uses phrases

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:09:02 to 8:09:13( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: like that, and some people here have used those phrases. well, you know what? i think the more accurate phrase and the more descriptive of what's happening there is to say what ambassador crocker said

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:09:13 to 8:09:24( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: to me when we met with him in baghdad. i challenged him and at the time i challenged general petraeus, i said, is that the right language. and they both said no, that's not the right language. what the mission

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:09:24 to 8:09:37( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: has to be is to stabilize that government. not to have some -- some hollywood victory that -- that sets our troops up for something that is not achievable. our troops have done their job. it's about

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:09:37 to 8:09:52( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: time we have the right policy and the right language that matches the valor of our troops. when we see these troops and their familie what their sacrifice, you see some of the the -- some of the horror

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:09:52 to 8:10:03( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: of battle when we went into a -- the combat support hospital right in the middle of baghdad and you see in that hospital doctors and nurses, enlisted men and women who are doing their job 24 hours

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:10:03 to 8:10:12( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: a day under the most difficult circumstances n. one case taking care of a little child, a girl who had been left in the streets of baghdad when her parents were killed. these doctors and nurses

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:10:12 to 8:10:22( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: were ministering to her, just like they ministered to the troops who come in from the battlefield battlefield. and we think of a lot of lessons from history and we remember what abraham lincoln

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:10:22 to 8:10:37( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: whsd he was talking about the -- lincoln said when he was talking about the civil war and he talked about what happens to those who die or are wounded in battle, especially those who die. and he --

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:10:37 to 8:10:50( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: and he talked at the time about making sure that we're doing everything possible to remember and to -- and to help the family of those who've perished, to help him, as abraham lincoln said, to help him who

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:10:50 to 8:11:03( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: has borne the battle and his widow and his orphan. that's why when we debate on this floor about this policy, we debate about veterans health care. wee trying to remember and enact policy that is supportive

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:11:03 to 8:11:13( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: of those troops who have perished in battle and those families. so i think we've got to make sure that we do everything possible to get this policy right, and i believe a giant step forward to

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:11:13 to 8:11:26( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: doing that would be to support the reed-levin amendment and to support other measures that help us change the course. we lost an opportunity yesterday when we didn't get to 60 votes on the webb amendment.

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:11:26 to 8:11:37( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: that was a bad day in the united states senate. but we have to keep trying and we'll try again tomorrow on this vote. finally, i want to conclude with some remarks about an amendment that i've offered

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:11:37 to 8:11:51( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: along with senator murkowski, an amendment which focuses on something we all talk about a lot but, frankly, the administration hasn't done nearly enough about and that's diplomacy. this amendment is

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:11:51 to 8:12:07( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: aense of the senate amendment expressing a very simple notion that it's time that we implement a diplomatic surge that matches any military surge. it sends a clear -- a crystal clear message to the

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:12:07 to 8:12:16( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: white house that time for sustained regional diplomacy is now and it deserves the highest priority of the president, president bush, and the secretary of state, secretary rice. we all recognize in

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:12:16 to 8:12:30( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: hindsight how diplomacy was critically missing from the strategic planning of the united states in the runup to this war. we all know that now. that's almost not even debated anymore. yet we've paid

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:12:30 to 8:12:44( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: little heed to diplomacy in the frustrating years since our initial invasion. the united states continues to treat iraq as some kind of isolated box, failing to recognize the complex linkages between

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:12:44 to 8:12:58( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: the various sectarian groups inside iraq and their patrons and supporters in the broader middle east region. it's time we made iraq less america's problem and more a responsibility for its regional neighbors and

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:12:58 to 8:13:08( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: the international community. let me just highlight quickly the -- the elements of this amendment. very specific steps. first of all, the united states should implement a comprehensive diplomatic strategy

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:13:08 to 8:13:19( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: and offensive. hasn't been done yet. number two, the united states should bring together iraq's neighbors through a regional conference or other mechanism. that hasn't been done yet. part of it has but

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:13:19 to 8:13:32( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: it hasn't been done as it should. and number three definitely has been done, especially when it pertains to the president. the president and the secretary of state should invest their personal time and

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:13:32 to 8:13:45( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: energy in these diplomatic efforts. this can't be done by proxy or surrogate. they have to be engaged fully. and in addition to that, the president i believe, and senator murkowski believes, should

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:13:45 to 8:14:00( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: -- should appoint a high-level presidential envoy to the region region. the u.s. ambassador to the united nations should seek the appointment of an international mediator in iraq to engage the political,

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:14:00 to 8:14:12( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: religious, ethnic and tribal leaders in iraq. and finally, the united states should more directly press iraq's neighbors to open fully operating embassies in baghdad. and i'll conclude with that. there's

Robert P. Casey, Jr.

8:14:12 to 8:14:27( Edit History Discussion )

Robert P. Casey, Jr.: so much that has to be done on diplomacy and there's so much more that we've got to do. we've got to keep debating this issue, keep pushing forward to achieve a better policy. and i believe two parts

Carl Levin

8:14:27 to 8:14:36( Edit History Discussion )

Carl Levin: to that is the enactment of the reed-levin amendment, first of all, and in addition to that, the amendment that i and senator murkowski have worked together on to have a real diplomatic surge in iraq.

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