Sunday, May 30, 2004

Mea Culpa Time

There are those who, because of my strong beliefs and opinions, seem to think that I cannot admit when I have been wrong. And, given the passion with which I speak and write that is, I suppose, understandable. But today, I offer to you an apology for my prior support for the Iraq War.

Long time readers of this blog (all 3 of you) know that I was a strong supporter of the administration in its efforts to oust Saddam Hussein. And while I still believe that a credible case could be made for toppling his regime, I no longer believe that such a case was made by this administration. Rather than offering up substantiated and honest evidence for the War, this administration chose to build its case on fabrications, exaggerations, and out-right lies to the American public.

The administration chose to alienate the world community and to divert resources away from the threat of Al Qaeda in order to satisfy a PNAC fantasy about Middle East politics, fueled on by a son's desire for revenge. At every moment when presented with a choice between the advice of uniformed experts and civilian theorists, the administration chose the latter and replaced the former. As generals called for more troops in order to stabilize Iraq the arm chair generals poo-pooed their recommendations. Cheney, Wolfowitz and the other chicken-hawks turned a deaf ear to real military men like Powell, Shinseki and Zinni.

The actions and events after the "Mission Accomplished" photo-op have only shown how little these arm chair generals know about war and strategic planning. Instead of being greeted with rose petals, out soldiers were met with rpg's. One has to wonder whether there even was a post-war plan prior to sending troops into combat.

And this administration has attacked anyone who dares question the efficacy of Iraq policy as unpatriotic. If it is not the height of hypocrisy for Vietnam avoiding stooges to attack the patriotism of decorated combat veterans, then I do not know what is. A true patriot, someone who loves their country, is not cowed by authoritarian pressure from a putative messianic leader. It is the American Way to question power and to question authority. My ancestors did not fight the British, the South, and the Axis in order to create, maintain and protect a country whose citizens would march in lock step with a president who foolheadedly sent America into battle.

So, for my past support of this War, I do apologize. I was wrong. How unfortunate that our president and members of his administration, who have the blood of over 800 US soldiers and countless Iraqi citizens on their hands, do not seem to feel any remorse.


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