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Iraq Surge Opposition "Escalates" in WV

February 19, 2007

The backlash against President Bush's plan for a troop surge in Iraq is coming to West Virginia. The State House votes this week on a resolution voicing the state's official disapproval of the plan.

In conjunction with the legislation, a new citizens' group has formed, known as West Virginians Against Escalation in Iraq. Gary Zuckett of West Virginia Citizen Action says the new organization counts local leaders, veterans and others among its membership.

"Enough is enough. We've been at this conflict in Iraq longer than we were in Vietnam, longer than we were in World War II - and there's no end in sight."

Supporters of the President's plan tout it as the only way to end conflict in Iraq, and to prevent further terrorist activity in the country. Zuckett summarizes the new group's disagreement, saying money spent on Iraq is being drained from vital programs and services here at home.

"We've toppled Saddam Hussein's regime. We've set up democratic government there. I think it's time to redeploy the troops, and take care of things here at home."

Zuckett adds that West Virginians Against Escalation in Iraq does not support a sudden withdrawal of U.S. troops from Iraq, only a more graceful exit with a rigid timeline.

Deborah Smith/Craig Eicher, Public News Service - WV