Letters

Letters 08-29-2016

Religious Bigotry President Obama has been roundly criticized for his apparent unwillingness to use the term “radical Islamic terrorism.” His critics seem to suggest that through the mere use of that terminology, the defeat of ISIS would be assured...

TC DDA: Focus On Your Mission What on earth is the Traverse City DDA thinking? Purchasing land around (not within) its TIF boundaries and then offering it at a discount to developers? That is not its mission. Sadly enough, it is already falling down on the job regarding what is its mission. Crosswalks are deteriorating all around downtown, trees aren’t trimmed, sidewalks are uneven. Why can’t the DDA do a better job of maintaining what it already has? And still no public restrooms downtown, despite all the tax dollars captured since 1997. What a joke...

European-Americans Are Boring “20 Fascinating People” in northern Michigan -- and every single one is European-American? Sorry, but this is journalistically incorrect. It’s easy for editors to assign and reporters to write stories about people who are already within their personal and professional networks. It’s harder to dig up stuff about people you don’t know and have never met. Harder is better...

Be Aware Of Lawsuit While most non-Indians were sleep walking, local Odawa leaders filed a lawsuit seeking to potentially have most of Emmet County and part of Charlevoix County declared within their reservation and thus under their jurisdiction. This assertion of jurisdiction is embedded in their recently constructed constitution as documentation of their intent...

More Parking Headaches I have another comment to make about downtown TC parking following Pat Sullivan’s recent article. My hubby and I parked in a handicap spot (with a meter) behind Mackinaw Brew Pub for lunch. The handicap spot happens to be 8-10 spaces away from the payment center. Now isn’t that interesting...

Demand Change At Women’s Resource Center Change is needed for the Women’s Resource Center for the Grand Traverse Area (WRCGT). As Patrick Sullivan pointed out in his article, former employees and supporters don’t like the direction WRCGT has taken. As former employees, we are downright terrified at the direction Juliette Schultz and Ralph Soffredine have led the organization...

Home · Articles · News · Random Thoughts · Time to get real on...
. . . .

Time to get real on Iraq

George Foster - June 30th, 2005
Surely, we can’t be the idiots our government officials think we are.
CNN’s recent interview with Dick Cheney was jarring in the utter absence of reality on the subject of Iraq from the vice-president. His insistence that the insurgency in Iraq is in its last throes, proved once again how cavalier guys in the White House tend to become. How many times during this conflict have we heard that terrorists are now spiking up the violence in Iraq because they are on their last legs and democracy is breaking out all over the land?
We were fed that same nonsense by the administration soon after the original invasion into Iraq two years ago. We heard White House officials mention “insurgency desperation” before the Iraqi election five months ago. Now we are to believe that the terrorists are really desperate this time around?
Let’s face it, the only desperation the murderers who are blowing up everything in sight (including themselves) will feel for some time is to be the first in line to kill Americans and Iraqis they see as our collaborators.
Even General John Abizaid, the leading U.S. commander in the Persian Gulf, contradicted the vice-president when he stated recently that the insurgency in Iraq is at least as strong as it was six months ago. Also, he added that more foreign fighters were entering Iraq than six months ago.
The most incredible statement from the vice-president’s interview might be that Iraq “will be an enormous success story.” Obviously, our government officials need to keep a positive outlook for the sake of our troops and the country’s morale in time of war. Yet, if the violence miraculously disappeared overnight, and our troops came home tomorrow - this debacle could never be considered “an enormous success.”
Has Mr. Cheney considered that 100,000 innocent Iraqi bystanders may have died in the crossfire over the last two years? Has he forgotten that $230 billion of U.S. taxes has been poured into Iraq so far? It can’t be lost on the vice-president that over 1500 U.S. troops have given their lives to topple one incompetent, madman dictator, Saddam Hussein. By any measure, the American intervention into Iraq is well past any possibility of being deemed “an enormous success.”
As our country’s support for the war effort erodes, even congressional supporters of President Bush such as Chuck Hegal and Lindsay Graham have questioned the government’s strategy in Iraq. Some Republican allies of the administration have called for a timetable from the Defense Department to get out of Iraq.
Bush, Cheney, and Rumsfeld do make sense on this: we can’t leave now nor does it make any sense to publicize a timetable for U.S. troop withdrawal. The resulting civil war in the Middle East to fill the vacuum of our immediate withdrawal could cause world anarchy and maybe millions more deaths. When it is time for our soldiers to leave, just get the hell out. Our enemies don’t need to know in advance.
Somehow, we need to get the job in Iraq done together. Currently, the polls in this country show less than 40% support our handling of the war. I guarantee that percentage would skyrocket upward if President Bush just leveled with the American people that our current strategy in Iraq has not worked and we need to close ranks in order to fix it.
Of course there are some good things going on in Iraq, but overall it is quagmire with no end in sight. Why not state the obvious (we have a problem, Houston), lay out a comprehensive plan to accelerate installation of security forces from other countries into the peacekeeping effort, and give our soldiers hope that they will be coming home sometime, soon.
Is that too much to ask?





 
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