State of Rhode Island Archives: on War & Peace


Mark Zaccaria: We should leave Iraq & Afghanistan once we win

Q: What should we do about the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan?

A: We should win them, and then leave. Here's how: we should do it just like we did in Germany, Japan, and South Korea. You could argue that it took America fifty years to change the cultures of those three former adversaries. By putting in that time and effort, though, we forged three staunch allies and trading partners. That's the model we now have to follow in Iraq and Afghanistan.

I think the war in Afghanistan was an appropriate response to the attacks on 9/11. What diverted our attention and our resources in Afghanistan was the invasion of Iraq. It's a mess, but it is our mess. In the wise words of Colin Powell, we broke it so we own it. Do I wish we had never undertaken military action in Iraq? Of course. War should always be the absolute last resort.

Source: 2008 R.I. House campaign website, markz4ri.org, "Q&A" Nov 6, 2008

Lincoln Chafee: Only Republican to vote against Iraq war?but keep Rumsfeld

Q: What about Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld?

LAFFEY: I have called for the resignation of Rumsfeld. We took the worst case scenario to go to war but then we use one of the rosiest cases to win the war. I come from the business world and we have to hold people accountable so my opponent has complained about the war and called Rumsfeld arrogant but wants to keep him around. I think he should leave. I think we should re-energize that.

CHAFEE: Laffey criticized me for not calling for Rumsfeldís resignation as he has, and by saying that job is not going well in Iraq and Rumsfeld should step down, that maybe that vindicates my vote against the war in Iraq. The only Republican to vote against the war in Iraq. Laffey is very critical of me when I cast that vote as we traveled around the state at joint appearances. Very, very critical of Chafeeís vote against the war. I suppose now you might say that was a good vote.

Source: 2006 R.I. Republican Senate Primary debate (x-ref Laffey) Aug 24, 2006

Lincoln Chafee: Support a timetable if diplomacy does not work

Q: You have both spoken out against any timetables for the withdrawal of American troops. How would you bring this fight to a successful conclusion?

CHAFEE: Thatís the biggest issue facing this country, what we do in the Middle East and particularly in Iraq. We have to work with those countries around Iraq. Thereíre six countries that share a border with Iraq. And they all have a vested interest. A couple of them our adversary, Syria and Iran, we need their help in stabilizing whatís happening in Iraq. If we canít work with those countries, I would support a timetable.

LAFFEY: The plan is this?we told people of the world that we would make Iraq a stable place. By stable, we really mean itís a place thatís no threat to itself. No threat to the neighboring countries and no threat to the US. That means taking troops in Iraq, Iraqi troops and taking them to Europe to train them and bring them back. We have to train those troops so that we can get them to stand up so eventually we can stand down.

Source: 2006 R.I. Republican Senate Primary debate on WPRI Aug 24, 2006

Stephen Laffey: Take the Iraqi troops to Europe to train them

Q: You have both spoken out against any timetables for the withdrawal of American troops. How would you bring this fight to a successful conclusion?

CHAFEE: Thatís the biggest issue facing this country, what we do in the Middle East and particularly in Iraq. We have to work with those countries around Iraq. Thereíre six countries that share a border with Iraq. And they all have a vested interest. A couple of them our adversary, Syria and Iran, we need their help in stabilizing whatís happening in Iraq. If we canít work with those countries, I would support a timetable.

LAFFEY: The plan is this?we told people of the world that we would make Iraq a stable place. By stable, we really mean itís a place thatís no threat to itself. No threat to the neighboring countries and no threat to the US. That means taking troops in Iraq, Iraqi troops and taking them to Europe to train them and bring them back. We have to train those troops so that we can get them to stand up so eventually we can stand down.

Source: 2006 R.I. Republican Senate Primary debate (x-ref Chafee) Aug 24, 2006

Stephen Laffey: Calls for the resignation of Rumsfeld

Q: What about Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld?

LAFFEY: I have called for the resignation of Rumsfeld. We took the worst case scenario to go to war but then we use one of the rosiest cases to win the war. I come from the business world and we have to hold people accountable so my opponent has complained about the war and called Rumsfeld arrogant but wants to keep him around. I think he should leave. I think we should re-energize that.

CHAFEE: Laffey criticized me for not calling for Rumsfeldís resignation as he has, and by saying that job is not going well in Iraq and Rumsfeld should step down, that maybe that vindicates my vote against the war in Iraq. The only Republican to vote against the war in Iraq. Laffey is very critical of me when I cast that vote as we traveled around the state at joint appearances. Very, very critical of Chafeeís vote against the war. I suppose now you might say that was a good vote.

Source: 2006 R.I. Republican Senate Primary debate on WPRI Aug 24, 2006

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