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The Surge Debate, etc.

[Here I am checking out the snow and ice this morning.]

[And here's my commute to work.]

[And now this Valentine's Day special treat! Replete with puffy shirt!]


This is a snow day on the blog, meaning -- I'm not sure. But I guess it means that, for just this once, digressions will be permitted. Yes, I'm giving everyone the green light to wander off topic occasionally. You're shocked, I know. You're doing a double take, your head pivoting on your neck so violently that your glasses have just flown across the room.


President of Iran Ahmadinejad, to Diane Sawyer:

"Your questions are combative. Women should not be asking tough questions about war. Women should ask about love, culture and family."

See ABC transcript.


And now, just for the record, here are some excerpts from the House debate on the Surge resolution (your thoughts welcome as always):

Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D.-Cal.: "Friday's vote will signal whether the House has heard the American people: No more blank checks for President Bush on Iraq. Our taxpayer dollars must go to protect our troops, to keep our promises to our veterans, and to provide for the safety of the American people. In light of the facts, President Bush's escalation proposal will not make America safer, will not make our military stronger, and will not make the region more stable."

Tom Lantos, D.-Cal.: "We are not fighting terrorism in Iraq. We are attempting to referee a religiously based civil war which saps our strength and destroys our fabric as a society...the administration has yet to learn that you cannot unscramble an omelet."

Roy Blunt, R.-Mo.: "It's hard to imagine a group less capable of making tactical decisions about specific troop deployments than 535 members of Congress. The resolution today is about the exact number of troops. Will the one tomorrow or next week be a vote on which block in Baghdad to target or which car to stop?"

John Boehner, R.-Ohio: "...because they cannot defeat Americans on the battlefield, Al Qaida and terrorist sympathizers around the world are trying to divide us here at home...The battle in Iraq is about more than what happens there. This is one part of a much larger fight, a global fight against Islamic terrorists who have waged war on the United States and our allies. This is not a question of fighting for land or for treasure or for glory. We are fighting to rid the world of a radical and dangerous ideology. We are fighting to preserve and defend our sacred way of life."

Patrick Murphy, D.-Pa: "From my time serving with the 82nd Airborne Division in Iraq, it became clear that, in order to succeed, we must make it clear to the Iraqis that we're not going to be there forever. Yet three years after I left Iraq, Americans are still running convoys up and down Ambush Alley and securing Iraqi street corners."

Adam Putnam, R.-Fla: "...the majority would have us consider a resolution that puts us one day closer to handing militant Islamists a safe haven the size of California. And when ideological militants achieve their objectives, history tells us that they don't settle; that they only attempt to expand their reach even further. And that means following us home."

Duncan Hunter, R.-Calif.: ".. think we should check our history -- and my friend, Mr. Skelton, I think you should check our history -- and see if this Congress has ever, after a military operation is already in place, is already moving forward, the Big Red One is already moving out, the All- American Division, the 82nd Airborne, already has troops in place in combat in the city, that we retroactively say, you know, "We don't support this."'

Charles Rangel, D.-NY: "'s going make us proud, one day, to be able to say, when asked, "What did you do when this was going on in the world and your Congress was asked?" and you would be able to say, "There was a resolution; it may not have been a profile in courage, but I supported it and I'm proud that I did."

Here's the story in the Post.

More here.

By Joel Achenbach  |  February 14, 2007; 9:29 AM ET
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