Every human being wants to live in a free country where there is security and an opportunity to grow, succeed, and be happy. But who can inspire anyone now to believe that this government has the ability to create such an opportunity.
In the final analysis, you have to be able to tell the truth -- truth you yourself believe in -- to inspire people. You see, whatever inspiring words come out of your mouth must be consistent with your behavior, past and present. So the opportunity to convince Iraqis that the US will help them achieve peace and security is lost.
I listened to the Secretary of State testify for several hours before a senate committee and while I was impressed with her ability to remain cool in the face of negative feedback and put the best possible face on the administration's policies, it was clear that her testimony lacked credibility. That is why this administration will not be able to win the war or the peace. It is not because peace is not winnable. It is because they do not have the insight or the courage to inspire or lead. As long as this administration is in power it is unlikely that they produce anything that anyone actually needs.
Members of this administration do not believe in the truth except as a last resort. They do not even know they do not believe in the truth. I think their attitude towards the American people and the Iraqi people is this: People cannot handle the truth. Unfortunately, it's the administration that cannot handle the truth.
In the same way that parents do not consider themselves liars when they tell their children fairy tales, this administration spins tales for the American people. And they believe they themselves are nevertheless honorable because they don't believe spinning fairy tales is dishonest. They simply have no respect for ordinary People. The US military is not Santa Claus in disguise.
It is too late now. For if this administration were to tell the truth... the whole truth... and nothing but the truth, they would expose themselves as liars heretofore. They are stuck.
It will take a new administration and new leadership... people who understand the power of the truth--people who would not lose face by telling the truth--to get us out of this mess. The question is, can the American people ever find the wisdom and courage to put such people in positions of leadership? I see no reason to be encouraged.
What is needed now are mature individuals in Congress who are willing to evaluate the situation as it is and make the difficult necessary decisions. This administration cannot be cajoled into adopting a workable policy because this administration doesn't have the talent or the consciousness to employ a workable policy even if some citizen were to offer one. It is a vision thing. This administration doesn't have it. Congress doesn't appear to have it either. It doesn't look good.
This administration has perpetrated egregious crimes against the people of Iraq and the United States. They have betrayed the citizens of both countries. If congress is unwilling to face up to and take responsibility for that truth, they are surely unprepared to imagine or set in motion a strategy in Iraq that will lead to a successful outcome.
If your grandchild was born with grotesque depleted uranium birth defects, or if your niece's face was burned down to the bone with phosphorous, or if you witnessed the results of a neighbor's cluster bomb injury, you probably would have a difficult time believing that Americans came to assist you in your pursuit of happiness. While most Americans probably haven't seen these pictures, I imagine a lot of Iraqis have. Americans are probably not welcome in Iraq. And what are the terms of this new oil agreement?
You can't win the prize if you don't understand what I'm talking about.