I know that there are Republicans out there that are as baffled and confused as the rest of us. The difference between Democrats, Independents and Progressives is that it’s not members of our party that has brought us to where we are today; The Republican Party holds that dubious distinction. I can put myself in the shoes of a Republican very easily. If I were a Republican, I would feel that I had been stabbed in the back by the very same man that promised to bring morality and decency back into American politics. Instead, this very same man has not only lied to everyone in the country, but he has even gone so far to lie to the very same people that put him in office, The Republican Party faithful.
This makes being a Republican a double edged sword. If you were to rise up and declare that the leader of your party is a liar of epic proportions, and that he and his Vice President have brought us into a war that was not properly prepared for as well as built on lies, than to come out and admit this might very well bring down the Party of Lincoln for all time. This is not a very good scenario considering that most of the people that are so opposed to Bush are left wing radicals that have hated Bush since the day that he took power. I understand how you feel and I would like to try to calm your fears, because I am not one of the people that hated despised Bush. But I worried from the day that her took office that we would end up exactly where we are now. Without name calling and invectives, let me explain why I fell as I do about the leader of the Republican Party.
When Bush started running on the “Compassionate Conservative” platform, I was interested. I voted for his father the first time that he ran. I was in the Army then and I felt that George Sr. was a bright guy. (That was before I found out about the Bush family). I thought that he did a moderately good job and that the economic downturn that lost him his Presidency was largely Ronald Reagan’s fault for borrowing so much against future earning to stimulate the economic recovery. Like I explained before I was not as well versed in politics as I am know. I was surprised when Clinton actually cut inflation and started to pay down the national debt. I was really surprised when the Republicans kept charging him with every possible charge that they could come up with. I wondered how Clinton had the time to run the country and also to fight all of the investigations and charges that were put on his table by Congress. I couldn’t believe that he won a second term.
I wrote a letter to Clinton about the war in Kosovo. I was against it. I thought we had no business in that part of the world that had been warring for centuries. I found out later that Wes Clark and others had backed Clinton into a corner in Kosovo and I was pleasantly surprised that the war was so brilliantly executed and we brought that situation to a satisfactory conclusion in record time with no loss of American life. I had written a letter to President Clinton and he sent me back a two page reply that he signed. I was amazed. When he was impeached by the House I was a little upset. I thought that Clinton’s indiscretion was wrong for a sitting President, but I felt that the coverage and the punishment were excessive and I felt that it was all very mean spirited.
Now we come to Bush. Vietnamese counterparts argued about the shape of the table in Paris, American soldiers were dying by the thosands. We knew in 1970 that we couldn’t win that war unless we committed to attacki As soon as this man became President, he developed a swagger in is walk. He had won the Presidency on the slimmest of margins, and I had seen firsthand what happened in Broward County during the election. I believed that he had stolen the election. Even so, I learned to live with it and hoped for the best, because I love my country. I spent 21 Years supporting it by wearing an Army Uniform. When Bush started talking about “The Axis of Evil” and “Evildoers” that kind of rhetoric scared me. When he brought in old Nixon cronies like Donald Rumsfeld and let Cheney become so powerful that scared me, I was in the Army from January 1968 to until the war in Vietnam was over. I saw first-hand how they lied to the American people, time and time again. Near the end of the war we were fighting North Vietnamese Regular Tank divisions and artillery brigades. The reports from Vietnam never reflected this. While Kissinger and his Northng Cambodia and North Vietnam. We let thousands of soldiers die for political reasons. During the last month of the war, American units refused to go out on patrol and be the last to die in a war that our nation had no intention of winning.
Now the run-up for war with Iraq started after the tragic events of 9/11. I had no qualms about going after al Qaeda or the Taliban in Afghanistan. I volunteered to go formally through the retired reserve. I then came down with cancer and was sidelined. The proof of Iraq’s involvement in 9/11 was very “iffy”. I knew that Saddam hated Iraq and the Sunni Muslims fundamentalists behind it, and I had a hard time believing that they worked together. That dog and pony show at the UN with Powell was in my mind, the worst kind of theatrics. The image of Bush with his shoulder out telling the Arab terrorists to “Bring it on!” was the worst kind of behavior from a President that I had ever seen in my life.
The War itself was processed with too few ground troops and a very shaky coalition. Saddam had agreed to give the inspector’s free reign to inspect weeks before the ground war and Bush called them home. The initial invasion was a two pronged run to Baghdad and on the way they passed hundreds of munitions sites and instead of guarding them, they put padlocks on them for the reason it was so necessary to get to Baghdad first for the photo ops. Those very same Munitions depots became the IEDS that killed so many of our servicemen. The first Iraqi government installation that was captured per the operation orders was the Oil Ministry. The second sites were Saddam’s Palaces. By this time the munitions depots were sacked by future insurgents that were Army troops and the Iraqi Police that were fired on the spot by the American military. Now we had a nation that was defeated militarily with too few soldiers on the ground, and its Army and Police disbanded.
Every move in Iraq has been a disaster. The oil is still not pumping. Hundreds of Iraqi’s are dying by sectarian violence every day. The same kind of sectarian violence could have happened in Serbia and Kosovo, but the plans put down by the Clinton Administration and NATO prevented this. In Iraq we are in a quagmire with no ending in sight. This President vows that the next President will inherit the situation in Iraq.
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