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Betraying the truth betrays the troops

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NNN0LHI Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-09-07 07:14 AM
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Betraying the truth betrays the troops
http://www.suntimes.com/news/greeley/290144,CST-EDT-GRE...

March 9, 2007
BY ANDREW GREELEY

I see by the papers that Senators Barack Obama and John McCain have been "dinged" by the "researchers" (mud collectors and mud throwers) because they have asserted that lives and money have been "wasted" in Iraq. How dare they say that the lives of "our troops" were wasted? Have they no respect for the feelings of the survivors of "our troops''? Must one maintain the illusion that these brave men and women died for something important, like American freedom or democracy or to prevent another World Trade Center attack?

The truth is that they died because of loyalty to the armed services and to their duty. That ought to be enough. One ought not to pretend that the war was waged for any other reason than that the president, the vice president, the secretary of defense and their coterie of neoconservative intellectuals wanted a war and exaggerated intelligence data to justify it.

The administration talks endlessly about loyalty to our troops and the duty of all Americans to support them. In fact, once they had the congressional resolution justifying the war, they showed precious little concern for the troops. They did not send enough troops to ensure immediate victory, nor did they train them for the kind of war they would have to fight. It was supposed to be over in a couple of weeks. You could win with substantial numbers of reserve and National Guard personnel, weekend soldiers who were yanked away from their families and jobs and sent off to war.

They did not equip the troops with adequate body armor or adequate vehicle armor. They did not devise a way to protect the troops from roadside bombs. They played games with their paychecks. They deployed and redeployed and then redeployed again, like they were yo-yos without any concern for their personal and familial stress. They assigned them to duty in prisons like Abu Ghraib for which they were totally unqualified. And Donald Rumsfeld delivered himself of the brilliant military dictum, "stuff happens." And remarked that ''you don't fight the war you want to fight but the war you have to fight.''

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