Friday, August 26, 2005

hate with a smile

The American Legion declares war on freedom of speech, freedom of assembly, freedom to think for yourself:

"The American Legion will stand against anyone and any group that would demoralize our troops, or worse, endanger their lives by encouraging terrorists to continue their cowardly attacks against freedom-loving peoples," Thomas Cadmus, national commander, told delegates at the group's national convention in Honolulu.

Our troops are *already* demoralized. They're fighting a war with no clear goals in a country where they're not wanted, a war in which it was long ago announced 'mission accomplished' but they're still there and they're still getting killed. They were lied to about the reasons for going there, lied to about how long they were going to be there, and now they're being lied to about their reason for still being there. I'd think that the lack of an exit strategy is more demoralizing than the knowledge that people back home care about them enough to want them to return alive.

In what way does protesting the war 'encourage' terrorists? Does it show them we don't have the resolve to take them down? They already suspect that. The Bush administration purposefully ignored opportunities to remove known Al-Qaeda operatives because they felt that doing so would weaken their specious case for going to Iraq, or because the trail led back to our economic ally Saudi Arabia. The terrorists know that this war isn't really about terrorism; they know this because they are watching coverage of the war on CNN in whatever Saudi city they're hanging out in this week. Like Israel and Palestine, our presence in Iraq just acts as a catalyst to turn ordinary people into bomb-laden insurgents, while the real terrorists sit back and watch.

When I see knee-jerk reactions like this display by the American Legion, I can't help but wonder: are they telling the world about a position they really believe in, or are they telling themselves whatever story it takes to make them feel good about themselves? I guess feeling like an uber-patriot fighting the peaceniks is better than feeling like you were betrayed by a government you trusted. But it doesn't change the fact of that betrayal in the slightest.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Our troops are *already* demoralized"

Actually they're not. Talk to some, or send an email, they mostly all seem pretty clear on what they're doing.

Army re-enlistment numbers exceeded 2005 goals before the end of summer.
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