March 24, 2008
America passed another grim milestone this week. Four thousand soldiers have now been sacrificed on George W. Bush’s altar of death in Iraq. Four thousand kids who signed up to defend and protect this country and have been betrayed by the very people who claim to “support” them. Four thousand Americans who cannot see your yellow ribbons anymore or hear the flag gently blowing in wind. Four thousand people who had futures, families and dreams before this administration marched them off to a war they had no business ever being in. I cannot stress this enough because there are people in this country who are so calloused to the sacrifice that they seemingly could care less about the very blood that stains their hands. If we do not make this the number one issue this election season, then more of our children will be sent to the desert to die. It is that sad and that simple.
Our president had the unmitigated gall to fly onto an aircraft carrier several years ago to use our troops as a photo op. He strode to the pre-set microphones in fatigues he refused to don when it was his turn to fight in Viet Nam, and addressed the country with a huge “Mission Accomplished” banner backing him up. He used his trademark grin and proclaimed that “major combat missions in Iraq are over” and that America had prevailed. Fast forward to today and we see that 97% of our soldiers’ deaths have occurred AFTER this photo-op. Let that sink in America. Let it sink in real deep. Because as much as he used the troops that day, he is still using them today.
There was the same man today addressing the press and the country about the four thousand deaths. Wrapped in faux sympathy there are telling words hidden amidst the crocodile tears. Bush said this:
I have vowed in the past, and I will vow so long as I'm president, to make sure that those lives were not lost in vain — that, in fact, there is an outcome that will merit the sacrifice," Bush said.
What??? It is time to debunk this twisted, tortured and callous logic once and for all. It has been a repeated republican talking point that in order to support the troops, you have to support more troops dying. If you think they should come home without a body bag, you must not support them. That is sick enough but the inherent message in this logic is that if anyone chooses to end this war, then the sacrifice made by the 4,000 dead will be in vain. Talk about demeaning the sacrifice of the troops! Bush then promptly exited like the coward he is, without taking any questions.
But he did send his press secretary out to reiterate how much he cares. Dana Perino though decided to also insult the collective intelligence of the nation by repeating the warped logic about needing to justify the sacrifice with more deaths. She added to the crassness however by insisting that the families of the dead want the war to continue, to justify the sacrifice! When pressed about the obvious fact that there had to be other families who felt differently, Ms. Perino insisted that the families Bush met with, predominately wanted more war and thus more deaths. The depths of depravity these people will go to in order to sell their war is staggering. Even the families’ grief is but a tool to be manipulated and used.
The cruel trifecta however came from the Vice President, Dick Cheney. He actually had the impudence to say that ultimately it was George W. Bush that carries the biggest burden, not the families of those who have lost loved ones in this war. I kid you not. The families that have to bury their children come in second to the burden Bush carries in sending their children to die. It would be almost comical if it were not so perverse.
We must be vigilant to remind everyone what we are facing in November. The corporate media has nearly blacked out coverage of the Iraq War. They want to make the election about Jeremiah Wright instead of 4,000 dead soldiers. They have already begun granting a free pass to John McCain. Remember this is a president that joked about not being able to find the weapons of mass destruction in Iraq, which was his stated reason for why so many have had to die so unnecessarily. Remember that John McCain has said that it would be fine with him if we were in Iraq for another 100 years. McCain also joked about bomb, bomb, bombing Iran. Just last week he was seemingly clueless about his own talking points to try and link Iran to Iraq.
How many more thousands have to be sacrificed before the bloodlust is satisfied? How much more blood has to soak the flag that people like John McCain like to wrap themselves up in? You now have 4,000 reasons to make sure that the twisted logic of cowards ends this year. The only true way to honor the sacrifice of these men and women is to make sure no more come home in boxes. It is not about Obama or Hillary. It is not even about McCain. It is about ending eight years of hell and relieving the GOP of the “burden” of having to demand more sacrifice when they clearly do not even have a clue what the word actually means.