Here is an Op-Ed piece written by Senators Joe Biden and Chuck Hagel in December 2002, before the US invasion of Iraq. Sen. Biden is a Democrat, and Sen. Hagel is a Republican.
It is a well-written piece with impressive foresight and details into how it would take a decade to turn Iraq into a stable democracy, after the fall of Saddam Hussein. I agree with every single thing stated in the article, including :
"Americans are largely unprepared for such an undertaking. President Bush must make clear to the American people the scale of the commitment. "
Also, this piece is notable for the absense of any mention of Saddam's WMD programs. Even though the article is about post-Saddam reconstruction, this omission is notable given the sentence about how there is no doubt that coalition forces would prevail against those of Saddam Hussein. This would suggest that this was not the Senate's primary reason for authorizing regime change in Iraq (even though Bill Clinton, in December 1998, did authorize a military campaign for the specific purpose of thwarting Saddam Hussein's WMD program).
What is sad is that both Biden and Hagel are now voting to defund the troops and deliberately induce a defeat, 4 years into the undertaking that they themselves said would take a decade to complete. What happened to actually being Statesmen (like Joe Lieberman, John McCain, and George W. Bush), rather than poll whores? Fortunately, these Statesmen still appear to have the upper hand, and will ensure that victory in 2008 is still on track.
The good news is that the blogosphere is gaining in power and penetration, and will ensure that valuable articles like these will be discovered and brought forth for voters to see. It will be increasingly harder for politicians to sway with the winds of fashion and hope no one discovers what they had said earlier.
Update : N.Z. Bear on how the Democrats have positioned themselves to lose if Iraq succeeds, a risk they did not have to take.
Update : More from Charles Krauthammer, who is often makes very original observations and articulations.