In several forums last January, Mr. McCain said he could envision a United States troop presence in Iraq for 100 years or more. But he did not mean to advocate a prolonged war, and he was clearly speaking in terms of a peace-keeping presence. The quotation Democrats most commonly refer to was from a town-hall-style meeting on Jan. 3 in Derry, N.H., when a voter mentioned that President Bush had spoken of “staying in Iraq for 50 years.” Mr. McCain interrupted to say, “Maybe 100.” But his comment came in the context of a broader lecture equating such a decades-long mission to American troop deployments in South Korea and Japan. He had also included a pretty big “if,” saying that such an enduring presence in Iraq, “would be fine with me as long as Americans are not being injured or harmed or wounded or killed.”
It should be mentioned that when you put McCain's "100 years" remark into the broader context of the lecture from which it has allegedly been unfairly ripped, it only becomes crazier. How exactly is a 100 year American military presence in Iraq to be peaceably achieved? "A pretty big 'if'" is one way to put it, I guess. I can think of others.
But! Apparently, to the NYT, pointing out that that a 100 year American military presence will mean 100 years of fighting or at least sporadic terrorism is horribly unfair, because what McCain had in mind was a ludicrous hypothetical fantasy that nobody who knows anything would ever take seriously.
That is one fucking well-checked "fact." Thanks, New York Times!