Happy Annivesary Indeed

This comes from an email I received today from an avowed liberal, Bush-bashing acquaintance. It was sent on an email list which has evolved into an ad-hoc forum for political discussion (read: argument). I knew from the subject line what was coming but was still surprised once I saw it:

Today, as I’m sure most of you know, is the 4th anniversary of the Iraq War. I think *** said earlier that Americans are not willing to stick out the long fight. I don’t completely agree with that. The American people have stuck with Bush for years on this war. They re-elected him in 2004, believing him and all his “the light is at the end of the tunnel” rhetoric. It’s only after four years, longer than we fought in WWII, with no end in sight, that most people have finally had enough. Why? Let’s look at some of the numbers.

Cost in lives – 3200, so far

Cost in dollars – $351 billion, so far

American War wounded – 23,000

Iraqi civilian deaths – conservative estimate – 60,000 – real number – ?

Happy Anniversary

Yes, Happy Anniversary indeed.

I understand his criticism of the war and I take it at face value. I firmly believe that he believes what he says and I have no reason to doubt that. My problem is the rhetoric.

In my mind, this represents nothing more than an “I told you so,” dressed in snark that aims not to encourage reflection or dialogue, but rather intends to ignore any and all of the bigger issues associated with the war.

After reading and digesting these thoughts, it occurs to me that life doesn’t happen in a vacuum and I recall that his formative years were shaped by Vietnam and that in that template there is no room for much else aside from deceipt and lies from your government though it is the same government that ought to take care of all of us; go figure.

But such is the Vietnam generation. It’s what they do.

I thought long and hard about a reply but came up with none. Once I found this commentary from Gerard van der Leun, it became clear that I didn’t need a reply of my own. Van der Leun’s musings on this 4-year anniversary wallops the Vietnam-think that, sadly, permeates too much of the leadership generation.

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1 Comment

  1. Another great post, Peabo!!

    I’m reminded of a monologue from a favorite movie of mine. Paraphrased, it is basically, “Men only ever die in the wilderness from self pity. They spend their days asking ‘why has this happened to me’ instead of working to preserve themselves and find their way out.”

    Whenever, I hear the liberal blame game, this scene comes to mind.


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