President Bush, facing opposition from both parties over his plan to send more troops to Iraq, said he has the authority to act no matter what Congress wants.
"I fully understand they could try to stop me from doing it. But I've made my decision. And we're going forward," Bush told CBS' "60 Minutes" in an interview to air Sunday night.
Vice President Dick Cheney asserted that lawmakers' criticism will not influence Bush's plans and he dismissed any effort to "run a war by committee."
"The president is the commander in chief. He's the one who has to make these tough decisions," Cheney said.
Any attempts to block Bush's efforts would undermine the troops, Cheney said. He took particular aim at Democratic lawmakers who have blasted the president for increasing troops despite opposition from Congress, military advisers and a disgruntled electorate that in November ousted the Republicans as the majority party on Capitol Hill.
Like Bush, though, Cheney said Americans need to look at the war in Iraq as part of a much longer effort.
"This is an existential conflict," Cheney said. "It is the kind of conflict that's going to drive our policy and our government for the next 20 or 30 or 40 years. We have to prevail and we have to have the stomach for the fight long term."
The White House also said Sunday that Iranians are aiding the insurgency in Iraq and the U.S. has the authority to pursue them because they "put our people at risk."
First off, in a lot of ways wars are run by committee. You have folks evaluating intelligence, folks devising military strategy, and folks working the domestic and international political angles, and perhaps most important of all folks making the military logistics work. If the ammunition won't make it to the line till Tuesday, no matter how determined the commander in chief is, the offensive really shouldn't happen on Monday and the logistics commander is not out of line or disloyal for saying an "offensive on Monday is a really, really bad idea". The president does not have the support of the American people for the war and it is appropriate for the Congress to remind him of that. I really doubt funding will be cut off anytime soon (if ever).
20,30,40 years? Well given how this gang has performed so far it seems likely that we are on course for another Hundred Years' War