Saying things like, the situation in Iraq is “grave and deteriorating,” the Iraq Study Group report says the current policy is simply not working.

US Senator Herb Kohl (D-Milwaukee) says he's “pleased” with the report , which has 79 recommendations. The Milwaukee Democrat says it's been clear for some that we need to have a change of course in Iraq, despite President Bush's resistance. “They have, in my judgment, come up with a very thoughtful series of proposals, which, I believe, can help to push us in the direction of getting us out of Iraq with a level of dignity and some level of accomplishment, hopefully.”

Kohl says Bush's “stay the course” attitude is not working and it's imperative that we try different strategies, including redeployment. He says the Iraqis have to take charge of their own country. “We'll create pressure on all the various groups in Iraq to begin the resolution of their own internal differences.”

Kohl stresses, we need to talk to our adversaries. “And I think their (Iraq Study Group) recommendation that we engage other countries in the Middle East in a regional effort to bring some level of calm to Iraq is the way to go.”

We need to look at all parts of the puzzle, including the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, says Kohl. And, if the Iraq war is going to be resolved, Democrats and Republicans must work together and persuade Bush with common principles and common ideas. “Making clear to him that not only do Democrats feel this way, but Republicans feel this way, also. And that limits his ability to simply disagree and say he's gonna stay the course as is.”

Kohl believes Bob Gates is an agent of change and will be a great Secretary of Defense. He says Gates does not have a “stay the course” attitude. Kohl has hope that the Bush Administration will seriously consider the Iraq Study Group's recommendations.

AUDIO: Jackie Johnson report (1:56 MP3)

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