NEW YORK At a critical moment, with Republicans in Congress starting to abandon President Bush on Iraq, The New York Times for its Sunday edition has published what may one day be viewed as a historic editorial.
It is titled, "The Road Home," and opens: "It is time for the United States to leave Iraq, without any more delay than the Pentagon needs to organize an orderly exit."
As long chronicled by E&P, very few newspapers in the U.S. have endorsed a withdrawal from Iraq or even a timetable for that, despite the overwhelming shift in public opinion on that question. Momentum has started to shift in that direction, however, with a handful of papers -- from the Los Angeles Times to, just this week, The Olympian in Washington -- backing a pullout. Today, the Tuscaloosa (Ala.) News joined in under the headline, "Bush Stands Alone in His Failed Iraqi Democracy Plans."
Now the Times has added its considerable weight to this cause. The paper has long been very critical of the conduct of the war and skeptical of the "surge" but has never backed a withdrawal. Or as the editorial puts it on Sunday: "Like many Americans, we have put off that conclusion, waiting for a sign that President Bush was seriously trying to dig the United States out of the disaster he created by invading Iraq without sufficient cause, in the face of global opposition, and without a plan to stabilize the country afterward."
The paper would like a withdrawal within six months but admits this is "unrealistic." In any case, it wants a firm deadline now.
The Road Home
How many more soldiers/citizens need to die before bush considers an exit.