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US Soldier Argues Against “Cut & Run” Conservatives

Last week, PatriotPartner made his views known about conservatives sitting out the Congressional election next week.  And I agree, the stakes are too high when the opposition party refuses to acknowledge our nation is at war.

Stanley Kurtz at the National Review Online received similar sentiments in an email from a most important source — a US Solidier fighting the War on Terrorism on the ground.

Sir, you are spot-on about not sitting out this election.  Many of us in uniform are anxious about this election.  Anyone can read and see from the news reports that the enemy here in Afghanistan and in Iraq is cranking up their efforts to produce many more American and allied casualties before the election, during the supposed holy month of Ramadan.  We fear the enemy will be greatly emboldened if the party of cut-and-run wins and will crank up even worst offensives in the hope of our withdrawing all support of both manpower and materiel to our democratically-elected allies in Iraq and Afghanistan, just like our weak politicians did after the 1974 elections to our South Vietnamese ally.

We conservatives don’t have the luxury of sitting out this election, because if the wrong politicians are elected, they will cut off all funding for military operations in Iraq, dooming our fledgling, democratically-elected ally to death and dismemberment.  Everyone around the world, from the caves of Afghanistan and Pakistan to the palaces in North Korea and Iran will be watching this election, this choice before the American people.  Will we stand up for Liberty and continue to support our fledgling, democratically-elected allies of Iraq and Afghanistan, or will we abandon them, like our weak politicians did after the 1974 elections?

The choice is yours to make, I pray along with every fighting man and woman in uniform today, that you will make the right one and not give up on us. We will win any war you commit us to, as you have repeatedly done so in 2002 and in 2004, but we need you, the American voter, to secure our rear while we continue to fight abroad those that attacked us on September 11th.  Don’t give up on us, because we will never give up on you.  Remember only you, the American voter, can lose a war by enabling the weak politicians to deny us victory.  May God Bless you all and our great Nation.

Sincerely,
A Soldier in Afghanistan

First, a big salute to this brave American.  He/she is a true hero and deserves his/her perspective to be heard loud and proud.

There is no question in my mind that the stakes are too high for conservatives to sit out or cast a “protest” vote in order to punish Republicans.  We are in a global world war against an ideology that is hell bent on destroying Western civilization through terrorist attack on our people and our economy. 

All other distractions are just that — and they are not worth obsessing over when our lives and way of life is at stake.  The alternative choice in this election doesn’t take this threat serious and would rather fight to give American civil rights protection to terrorists.  The disconnect from reality among Democrat leaders is simply mind-boggling.

-Bruce (GayPatriot)

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64 Comments

  1. This past month, encouraged by ‘cut and run’ rhetoric from the Democrats, the terrorists have gone all-out to maximize American casualties, in hopes of helping the Democrats take Congress. The hands of Ned Lamont, John “Benedict Arnold” Murtha, Nancy Pelosi, Howard Dean, Jim Webb and all the other Democrats who’ve been bleating, “Iraq is too hard, so we should leave,” are stained with soldiers’ blood.

    I can already hear the bleating, “But Bush sent them over there. It’s his fault!” OK, so you support leaving Saddam in power. If that’s your position, take it and own it.

    I think the person who summed up this election as, “Republicans deserve to lose, but Democrats don’t deserve to win,” nailed it precisely.

    Comment by V the K — October 30, 2006 @ 9:22 am - October 30, 2006

  2. I mean, face it. The message of the Democrats to the terrorists is, “If you kill enough of us, we’ll back down.” Is it at all surprising that the terrorists take them up on that offer?

    Comment by V the K — October 30, 2006 @ 10:06 am - October 30, 2006

  3. V the K, if terrorists were that rational, I’d agree with your point. The administration and Congress have to argue the merits or the Iraq war without regard to what the terrorists will supposedly think by our actions. Just as it would be a bad idea to get out of Iraq simply because of the terrorists, it would be just as bad or worse, if we stay because we think terrorists will behave a certain way. If the decision was made to get out of Iraq, then the administration should then use a good portion of the money saved from getting out of Iraq, and find a more efficient way to combat terrorism.

    Comment by Pat — October 30, 2006 @ 10:34 am - October 30, 2006

  4. Re: #3: All of that is irrelevent. The terrorists will interpret unconditional US withdrawal as a victory, (rightfully so) which will only rally supporters to their side. Just as Mogadishu taught OBL that the US had no guts for a fight and emboldened him to pursue ever larger terrorist attacks. Meanwhile, any allies we might have had in the region will have been shown that the US is unreliable and will chicken out when things get tough, as the Kurds and the Marsh Arabs learned when Bush41 hung them out to dry in ’91. This will further strengthen the terrorists.

    “We need to find more efficient ways of fighting terrorists,” is an empty refrain unless you actually have a plan that goes with it.

    Comment by V the K — October 30, 2006 @ 11:28 am - October 30, 2006

  5. I mean, face it. The message of the Democrats to the terrorists is, “If you kill enough of us, we’ll back down.” Is it at all surprising that the terrorists take them up on that offer?

    That message was also sent by Ronald Reagan when he pulled out of Beirut.

    And what exactly is the message that Republicans are sending today? That we have strong words, but are weak on execution and follow-thru. That the American military is still vulnerable when its on the ground and is inept in fighting a guerrilla war. Our enemies, Syria, Iran, etc. no longer fear us because they think they have seen the limits of our military power. And because right now, at this moment, they are succeeding in killing American Soldiers in Iraq.

    The GOP and the Bush administration are far more concerned with winning a campaign rather than winning the WOT. They have learned how to talk tough, but they don’t really walk the walk. If its a choice between saving a safe seat in Congress or of making a difficult and unpopular decision in Iraq, they will choose the safe GOP seat.

    Keep in mind that Bush’s commission run by Baker has a different strategy for Iraq that will probably be enacted. After the election. Even if that new strategy can save the lives of American Soldiers today, they are waiting until after the election to implement it so as to not ruin any GOP chances in Congress. And how much do you want to bet that that strategy involves cutting and running under another name?

    The primary message being sent by Bush and the GOP to terrorists is that we are incompetent and that we are unwilling to put long term goals before short-term political greed. That when terrorists are attacking our troops in Iraq, we won’t be focusing on their defeat. Instead our government will be concentrating our efforts on such things as debating same-sex marriage, Terry Schiavo, and embryonic stem-cell research. That we will be dismissing Arabic linguists from the military because apparently God knows that gays and same-sex marriage are a bigger threat than terrorism.

    The pundits and partisans are saying don’t elect the Democrats because they will be incompetent fighting the War on Terror. Sorry, but we have already reached that point thanks to the GOP, which has shown that they are just as blindly incompetent.

    So go ahead and vote for the GOP. Just don’t fool yourselves into thinking that you are going to be getting better leadership than from the Democrats. Its not a question of how bad the Democrats would do, its a question of how much worse. And it would be difficult, even for the Democrats, to do as poorly as the GOP has done.

    Right now the GOP and Bush can act unilaterally. And they often seem to do so walled off from reality. They don’t have to worry about their critics so much because those critics have little actual power. But if the Democrats win the Congress, the GOP is going to have pay more attention to the results of their decisions. They would actually have to prove that they are better than the Democrats. Instead of just claiming that they are.

    Comment by Patrick (Gryph) — October 30, 2006 @ 11:39 am - October 30, 2006

  6. That message was also sent by Ronald Reagan when he pulled out of Beirut.

    Um, Gryph, Reagan isn’t president any more.

    Comment by V the K — October 30, 2006 @ 11:51 am - October 30, 2006

  7. #4 Again, you are making the assumption that there is rationality behind the terrorists reaction to any U.S. action. Yes, of course, withdrawing unilaterally certainly may cause the terrorists to claim victory. I am also wondering who cares if they declare victory. If 1,000,000 terrorists were blown up, they’d declare victory. Terrorist activity increased anyway, during the Iraq war. So all we know is when America shows strength, or shows weakness, whether real or perceived, that increases terrorist activity. And I don’t know staying in a war that is not progressing and/or making things worse (if that is what is happening in Iraq) also sends a signal to the terrorists.

    I agree my statement of finding more efficient ways to combat terrorism is empty. I do not have an alternative plan. Unfortunately, neither party does either.

    Comment by Pat — October 30, 2006 @ 12:32 pm - October 30, 2006

  8. you are making the assumption that there is rationality behind the terrorists reaction to any U.S. action.

    Crazy doesn’t mean stupid, dear. The terrorists simply want to kill as many westerners as possible. Rational or not, it does not affect the calculus that retreating in Iraq will encourage more terrorism, as well as freeing up thousands of terrorists currently focused on American soldiers.

    If Iraq is acting as a magnet that draws terrorists into our gunsights, so much the better. It’s better to have our soldiers killing them over there, then them killing civilians over here. I’ll grant that the administration should take the gloves off and kill more of them. But if we pull out, we suddenly leave tens of thousands of terrorists with no fight to keep them occupied, and who also have been taught that killing Americans is an effective way to achieve their policy goals (in this case, unilateral, unconditional retreat from Iraq.) Do you really think all those terrorists are just going to go home and herd goats?

    Comment by V the K — October 30, 2006 @ 12:45 pm - October 30, 2006

  9. The terrorists are quite rational – just operating from religious motives.

    It’s their genuine religious sense of superiority and motivation to kill us, that we Westerners can’t fathom – and hence, many of us go around imagining the terrorists must be irrational. Or that we “caused” their terrorism, when we did [insert complaint here].

    They stand in a 1400-year Islamic tradition of subjugating unbelievers: by war and conquest if possible; by terrorism, assassination or any other means if necessary.

    Comment by Calarato — October 30, 2006 @ 1:06 pm - October 30, 2006

  10. That message was also sent by Ronald Reagan when he pulled out of Beirut.

    And in retrospect, it was the wrong one to send.

    And what exactly is the message that Republicans are sending today? That we have strong words, but are weak on execution and follow-thru. That the American military is still vulnerable when its on the ground and is inept in fighting a guerrilla war. Our enemies, Syria, Iran, etc. no longer fear us because they think they have seen the limits of our military power. And because right now, at this moment, they are succeeding in killing American Soldiers in Iraq.

    “Inept”?

    The United States lost more soldiers in three days of fighting on Iwo Jima than it has in three years of fighting in Iraq.

    Of course the military is still vulnerable on the ground. But what you and your fellow Democrats won’t admit, Gryph, is the lesson of Kosovo — air assaults are useless when the enemy can casually move their equipment and armies into civilian areas.

    Second, what you also won’t admit is that our troops are at a distinct disadvantage. If WE were willing to use civilian populations as shields, plant bombs in marketplaces, take the families of insurgents hostage, and publicly torture people who opposed us, you’d soon see how “inept” we aren’t.

    And the irony of your entire statement is this:

    The primary message being sent by Bush and the GOP to terrorists is that we are incompetent and that we are unwilling to put long term goals before short-term political greed……. That we will be dismissing Arabic linguists from the military because apparently God knows that gays and same-sex marriage are a bigger threat than terrorism.

    That is so completely hilarious.

    You obsess over “Arabic linguists”, Gryph, so you support the party that wants to ban gathering intelligence from terrorists.

    What good are your linguists going to be when Democrats like yourself won’t let any information be gathered for them to translate?

    You claim Bush is incompetent, but you want to put back in power the party that so emasculated our military that two men in a dinghy blew up a US Navy destroyer and whose idea of good foreign policy is to support women who send hundreds of thousands of dollars to terrorists.

    Comment by North Dallas Thirty — October 30, 2006 @ 1:07 pm - October 30, 2006

  11. “…you and your fellow Democrats won’t admit, Gryph…”

    I assume you meant that ironically, NDT, since Gryph’s “official” stance that he wants us to buy (and, quite possibly his true voter registration) is Independent.

    Comment by Calarato — October 30, 2006 @ 1:10 pm - October 30, 2006

  12. In George F. Will’s column this week, he wrote this:

    Many months ago it became obvious to all but the most ideologically blinkered that America is losing the war launched to deal with a chimeric problem (an arsenal of WMD) and to achieve a delusory goal (a democracy that would inspire emulation, transforming the region). Last week the president retired his mantra “stay the course” because it does not do justice to the nimbleness and subtlety of U.S. tactics for winning the war.

    A surreal and ultimately disgusting facet of the Iraq fiasco is the lag between when a fact becomes obvious and when the fiasco’s architects acknowledge that fact. Iraq’s civil war has been raging for more than a year; so has the Washington debate about whether it is what it is.

    And the rest of the article read like a shotgun blast to Cheney’s face. Now, I’m no pundit. But as conservatives, when you’ve lost George Will, you have to know you are one of the last people on the block.

    Comment by Chase — October 30, 2006 @ 1:37 pm - October 30, 2006

  13. A Good Question from Bill Kristol: Who’s going to take on the militias if they think we’re going to leave in six months and they’re just going to be killed by these people?

    Comment by V the K — October 30, 2006 @ 1:44 pm - October 30, 2006

  14. Web Reconnaissance for 10/30/2006…

    A short recon of what?s out there that might draw your attention….

    Trackback by The Thunder Run — October 30, 2006 @ 1:53 pm - October 30, 2006

  15. V the K, Calarato. I understand your points about whether they are crazy, rational, and the religious motivation, whatever. It just seemed easier to simply write “irrational” when discussing how terrorists are going to react to any U.S. action or inaction. But I do believe that most of the terrorists are stupid. Intelligence on their part is not a requirement in trying to kill as many Americans, Iraqis, etc., as they can, while they themselves get killed because they support some rich sick Islamist who claims to be against Western ideals, when they are really against Western ideals for the common folk.

    If the administration really believes that continuing the Iraq war for as long as necessary is going to help Iraq become a civilized democratic nation, that’s fine. If that does happen, I don’t see terrorism ending. In fact, it may be motivation for it to escalate even more. I am not convinced that terrorism will be worse if the U.S. decides that the Iraqi is no longer a war worth continuing, and feels that the GWOT must be fought in another way.

    Comment by Pat — October 30, 2006 @ 2:02 pm - October 30, 2006

  16. But I do believe that most of the terrorists are stupid. Intelligence on their part is not a requirement in trying to kill as many Americans, Iraqis, etc., as they can, while they themselves get killed because they support some rich sick Islamist who claims to be against Western ideals, when they are really against Western ideals for the common folk.

    Actually, Pat, on several levels, you’ve just nailed a big part of the US strategy in Iraq — which I like to call “draining the stupid pool”. That this would come out of the Bush administration is no surprise; Karl Rove and others have made a science out of manipulating the irrational hatred of others to make them do something counterproductive to their cause.

    First and foremost, our attacking Iraq got rid of Saddam and his potential for destructive violence — major good point.

    Second, though, it provided a tempting target for jihadists — their chance to attack Americans close by, instead of having to go through the rigamarole of actually getting to the United States.

    In the process, that does four things:

    1) Keeps them out of the United States

    2) Brings them from surrounding countries in which they are dangerous to our allies (i.e. Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Pakistan)

    3) Keeps them focusing on the short-term goal of IED planting, rather than attacking the homeland

    4) Runs them up against a force that is far, FAR more qualified to detect, neutralize, and defeat them than the US civilian population or even the armed forces of our surrounding allies

    Eventually, they’re going to run out of stupid people.

    Comment by North Dallas Thirty — October 30, 2006 @ 2:18 pm - October 30, 2006

  17. #15 – I agree that victory in Iraq – which Bush defines as an Iraq that can govern, defend and sustain itself – won’t end terrorism. Because, again, by “terrorism” we really mean “jihad”. And by “jihad”, we really mean “Islam’s 1400-year project”.

    Having said that: I think a semi-democratic Iraq (perhaps looking somewhere between Turkey and Egypt) that rises to defend itself against local jihadists ultimately makes life harder for the jihadists and gives them a bad name, while giving the people a better life that makes them skeptical of jihad. Which protects us.

    Comment by Calarato — October 30, 2006 @ 2:35 pm - October 30, 2006

  18. Bruce, it’s been a long time since the American public has had a nice “clean” war that we could all rah-rah behind and include even the Democrats. The American warrior speaking from Afghanistan keeps the eye on the ball –thanks for sharing his view. And your expansion and application of his perspective for all of us.

    One of the issues that isn’t discussed in the WOT anymore is to what extent the endless carping, political maneuvering, and second-guessing from the Democrat back-benchers, anti-war factions and MSM in our country and abroad turned the American public “off” to the cold, brutal reality of what it means to fight a WOT.

    Like many here, I too watched the hi-tech, relatively low casualty, mostly “long distance” managed Gulf War and thought that this was THE future direction of warfare for the US. All those Reagan-Bush era military expenditures were in lieu of American soldier deaths and, frankly, well worth it to me. And Hollywood abetted it all by depicting spy thrillers that employed surgical precision asset acquisition and termination scenarios using well equipped warriors, super technology, super drama. Remember those scenes in the desert in “Patriot Games” –taking out the IRA-like terrorists while Washington covert operatives (don’t think Valerie Plame, thank you) watched in real time?

    The long, hard slog in Baghdad caused some of the American public to lose hope and trust in our soldiers and the ability of the military/civilian leadership to prosecute this war. And, as many conservatives have noted here, the Bush Administration hasn’t done the kind of job needed to convince America the WOT is winnable. And it hasn’t done a good job of confronting the enemy at home –especially those on the back bench.

    Into that breech, rode the hundreds of nay-sayers, anti-war protesters, civil libertarians, political operatives and opportunistic leaders. Like a hundred chickens clucking at the corn on the ground, these folks have directly created a political environment that the terrorists –who are well informed (thanks CNN) , very very rational and fully capable of slitting Pat’s and Gryph’s and Ian’s throats in a split second if needed– are now using the political environment in the US to their own perverted purpose. And it seems a large portion of the voting public is buying into that act –which says a lot about the ability of voters to differentiate.

    Toss in a little CNN coverage of American GIs getting sniped, hit, possibly killed… and well, it’s a party for the American Left and our enemies in France, Liberia and elsewhere. The lunacy has run so far afoot that the American Left has now given the public a chance to debate the merits of a docu-drama styled snuff film featuring a sitting President.

    It’s a shame we still have to debate why we’re in Iraq with some of these people. It’s a shame the bag of tricks from the American Left has such currency for a significant portion of American voters. It’s a shame that people from the Left think patriotism is a value worn once a year on July 4th and then put on the shelf in deference to political opportunism.

    I hope the anti-tax, anti-big govt conservatives and libertarians understand well what is at stake and don’t play the Bush-Quayle 92 card again and sit on their hands… the price in American lives will be costly. Let alone the cost already paid being turn to naught.

    Comment by Michigan-Matt — October 30, 2006 @ 3:00 pm - October 30, 2006

  19. NDT screeches:

    but you want to put back in power the party that so emasculated our military that two men in a dinghy blew up a US Navy destroyer and whose idea of good foreign policy is to support women who send hundreds of thousands of dollars to terrorists.

    Nonsense. Did I not say in my piece to go ahead and vote Republican? Its not going to make any difference.

    BTW, you have brought up that little rant before about the dinghy and the Cole. Oddly enough, instead of faulting the Clintons, I fault the terrorists. If the same thing happened today and I blamed Bush for a specific incident, like when our choppers got downed in Afganistan, you would be nutting out even more. And of course you neglect to mention that the original cuts in the military happened under Bushes father, not Clinton.

    You know NDT, you should read GPW’s previous post on the “Politics of Hate”. This might shock you NDT, but Satan has been around a lot longer than the Clintons. Its stupid for you to blame them for every single thing that has ever gone wrong in the universe since the beginning of time.

    I’m starting to wonder if you are a bit overly Partisan.

    Comment by Patrick (Gryph) — October 30, 2006 @ 3:02 pm - October 30, 2006

  20. I hope the anti-tax, anti-big govt conservatives and libertarians understand well what is at stake and don’t play the Bush-Quayle 92 card again and sit on their hands… the price in American lives will be costly. Let alone the cost already paid being turn to naught.

    You are trying to scare me into voting for big-government power-hungry Republicans (which is what they’ve become since 1994 when I voted for them and volunteered for a few of them) because of one thing: the fear of terrorist. Well, you may think I’m nuts, but my fear of terrorism is not enough to make me support people who don’t share any of my political values. I believe that drunk drivers and normal domestic murderes present a greater threat to my personal safety, and I could provide some numbers to back that up if you want — but reducing those threats doesn’t dominate my thinking, either.

    Basically, it seems like a lot of people say something like “the GOP don’t deserve your vote for many reasons, but you really have no other choice because they’ll do a botter job against terrorists.” I just don’t see that issue as the single overriding factor that should trump all other political goals. As a result, I’ll cast my protest vote again in the hopes that one of the establishment parties will start caring about the things I care about.

    Comment by kdogg36 — October 30, 2006 @ 3:34 pm - October 30, 2006

  21. I really botched some words in that last post, like “murderes” and “botter.” 🙂

    Comment by kdogg36 — October 30, 2006 @ 3:37 pm - October 30, 2006

  22. George Will is right. He’s always been a sensibile and pragmatic conservative. He’s someone anyone can understand wherever their politics lie. George Bush and the GOP have been such a disaster in every sense of the word. Why not give the democrats a chance to have the power to affect some change in our policies?
    I just don’t think these guys deserve to retain power. If they were conservative and competent administrators, that would be one thing. but they aren’t. so something has got to give.

    Comment by ryan — October 30, 2006 @ 3:40 pm - October 30, 2006

  23. kdogg’s “I’m a libertarian free-thinker who just happens to parrot DNC talking points” act is getting ever more tiresome.

    Comment by V the K — October 30, 2006 @ 3:41 pm - October 30, 2006

  24. #23 – Agree, here. I mean, the whole thing about anyone trying to “scare” anyone is the complaint of a child, or someone adopting a Child stance.

    Is the vicious, evil landlord “trying to scare you” if he installs a fire alarm? or if the fire alarm goes off? But if you really don’t think you need it, then ignore it.

    We face the threats we face. The Democrats refuse ever to state any plan for Iraq. If we withdraw prematurely, it’s a victory for the jihadists – they take a big step forward. President Bush is at least willing to defend America – and human freedom. If kdogg reacts with ‘fear’ to someone saying that, perhaps kdogg should take it up with Reality, because the person is only pointing out Reality.

    Comment by Calarato — October 30, 2006 @ 4:16 pm - October 30, 2006

  25. #24: Well, the far-left and the far-right have been swapping tinfoil hats for some time now. The rhetoric about terrorist surveillance and the war on Iraq on DailyKos is essentially identical to that on Stormfront. But that is only one thing that sets off a twitch on my BS detector. When someone who claims to be independent uses the same caricatures of Santorum, Allen, and other Republicans used by the DNC, repeats the same talking points used by party hacks, consistently blasts one political party over the other at about a 20:1 ratio, and supports court-imposed social engineering, the needle hovers in the yellow, with spikes into red.

    Comment by V the K — October 30, 2006 @ 4:33 pm - October 30, 2006

  26. Of course, the chance that some of those attacks on Republicans could, in fact, be correct, isn’t even considered by you, V.

    Comment by Cycloptichorn — October 30, 2006 @ 4:44 pm - October 30, 2006

  27. Nonsense. Did I not say in my piece to go ahead and vote Republican? Its not going to make any difference.

    Right. So why’d you make the post in the first place?

    BTW, you have brought up that little rant before about the dinghy and the Cole.

    Indeed I have — and, as I recall, you tried to smear the ship’s commander first for supposedly not doing his job, then retreated on that when it was shown to you that the investigation found not him to be at fault, but the Clinton administration’s policies regarding the use of force which he was following.

    And as for you blaming Bush, you already do that.

    Comment by North Dallas Thirty — October 30, 2006 @ 5:06 pm - October 30, 2006

  28. This might shock you NDT, but Satan has been around a lot longer than the Clintons. Its stupid for you to blame them for every single thing that has ever gone wrong in the universe since the beginning of time.

    Good thing I don’t, then.

    However, you and Sullivan when it comes to Bush………

    Comment by North Dallas Thirty — October 30, 2006 @ 5:08 pm - October 30, 2006

  29. Iraq asks us to stay:

    http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20061030/ts_nm/iraq1_dc_5

    Saudi Arabia’s representative backs them up with a very strange theory: Since we came “uninvited” (BTW, not at all true), we must NOT leave until Iraq / the Arab world is ready for us to leave.

    For any leftie who still claims we are there illegally: the Coalition has U.N. mandates and has had them all along. Iraq will be asking the U.N. to extend the Coalition mandate another year.

    Comment by Calarato — October 30, 2006 @ 6:41 pm - October 30, 2006

  30. If the GOP retains control of Congress, then within 6 months the President will declare “Mission Accomplished” (in spite of cut and run Democrats) and begin pulling out of Iraq.

    If the GOP loses Congress, within 6 months the President will declare “Mission Accomplished” (because of of cut and run Democrats) and begin pulling out of Iraq.

    Comment by Patrick (Gryph) — October 30, 2006 @ 6:45 pm - October 30, 2006

  31. we should take our troops out of iraq and try and save afghanistan from the taliban, who we KNOW harbour terrorists quite openly. how are we gonna look if afghanistan falls because we are focused on iraq and the al queda camps start up there again? answer: pretty stupid.

    I really could care less about bush and his little iraq adventure. it’s a total loss.

    Comment by lester — October 30, 2006 @ 6:51 pm - October 30, 2006

  32. Michigan-Matt, thanks for the image of me getting my throat slit. Yeah, in today’s world, that can always happen. Frankly, I think that the longer we continue in the Iraq war, the more likely that scenario will happen. Obviously, you disagree, and that’s fine. You and others here have made good arguments for staying in Iraq. I’ve seen better arguments for getting out.

    NDT, I like the scenario you described. I don’t know if that is what’s really happening and/or if that really is the administration’s plan. Even if you’re right, I still don’t think the stupid pool is going to be drained enough to rid the world of terrorists.

    Comment by Pat — October 30, 2006 @ 7:02 pm - October 30, 2006

  33. One brave American, indeed. And there are others. And they disagree.

    Comment by sean — October 30, 2006 @ 7:13 pm - October 30, 2006

  34. #22 & 23: Here’s what I’m saying. Neither establishment party (or its candidates in my location, Baltimore) is partcularly palatable for a libertarian (or fiscal conservative, for that matter) — I think most people here realize that and largely sympathize. The message I get from many people on here is that none of that matters, because the GOP will do a better job fighting terrorism and that consideration should override all others. I do not believe that is Reality; I do not believe terrorism presents such a threat to me or to my loved ones that I will ignore the fact that I what I reall want, in my lifetime, is a country that truly values individualism and self-determination.

    I am not going to vote for the GOP based solely on the war on terror, which is the only plausible reason why I would do so. I am going to cast my usual anti-establishment vote and in general be an activist for having different choices entirely, whether that come from a third party in the future or within one of the existing ones. If this is the reason you think I’m just parroting DNC talking points, then I will just have to scratch my head. There’s nothing I despise more than people who dare call themselves “liberals” but really are pure socialists, and who have dominated the Democratic Party since FDR’s stint as Marxist dicator.

    Comment by kdogg36 — October 30, 2006 @ 8:13 pm - October 30, 2006

  35. When someone who claims to be independent uses the same caricatures of Santorum, Allen, and other Republicans used by the DNC, repeats the same talking points used by party hacks, consistently blasts one political party over the other at about a 20:1 ratio, and supports court-imposed social engineering, the needle hovers in the yellow, with spikes into red.

    The funny thing is, participants on other forums (like the planetout.com news message board), as well as my many liberal friends, sometimes suggest I’m a shill for the GOP. That’s because preaching to the choir is not an efficient use of one’s online time (or, admittedly, all that much fun), so you’re far more likely to see my attacks on Republicans here than Democrats. Exactly the opposite is true in other milieux.

    I have two acquaintances in DC whom I see on a fairly regular basis because they’re friends of friends; they are in fact employees of the DNC. They barely tolerate my presence at social gatherings because my disdain for the policies of their party is well known. In the past, potential love interests have blown me off for the very same reason, but that’s hardly a big loss and I’m doing fine in that department anyhow.

    Not long ago, I attacked Harold Ford on this board in no uncertain terms. I will attack more Democrats, if you like, to show that I hate them as much as I do Republicans. However, that’s just not the first thing that comes to mind when I post on a partisan board, whether Republican or Democrat, because most people there are already in line with that anyhow.

    If you think my approval of Lawrence is court-imposed social engineering, it’s not; those laws were legislature-imposed thuggishness, and I’m glad to see them gone, whatever the mechanism.

    Comment by kdogg36 — October 30, 2006 @ 8:34 pm - October 30, 2006

  36. we should take our troops out of iraq and try and save afghanistan from the taliban, who we KNOW harbour terrorists quite openly. how are we gonna look if afghanistan falls because we are focused on iraq and the al queda camps start up there again? answer: pretty stupid.

    Considering that Afghanistan is a NATO operation, why don’t you talk to them — and demand that other countries start sending more troops?

    Comment by North Dallas Thirty — October 30, 2006 @ 8:39 pm - October 30, 2006

  37. 4: Seems they’re doing a pretty damn good job rallying supporters with us there, so what’s the difference?

    Comment by Kevin — October 30, 2006 @ 8:44 pm - October 30, 2006

  38. Why do some Republicans want to keep soldiers in Iraq so they can die? And why do they tell us this from behind their keyboards?

    Some Republicans are more about saving face than they are about soldiers’ lives. There is absolutely no rationale for Iraq anymore. The legitimacy of this administration has been completely thrown into question by its ineptness. And some Republicans want to keep soldiers in Iraq. For what? Seriously, for what?

    Both staying and leaving do. not. matter. Either way, terrorists have been emboldened, their numbers increase, they find justification for this violence toward us and they use whatever happens to their advantage. The sad part is that some Republicans have been suckers for terrorist games of chicken and have bought into the possible narrative that terrorist organizations will spin should we leave. That story, by the way, is pretty much the same story if we stay–just some minor details are switched around. But given the same narrative, is it smarter to bring the troops home now to their families and out of harm’s way or to leave them there as targets? Remember, the terrorist line will not change.

    So who really cares about the troops? The swaggering face-savers or the rational realists?

    Why do some Republicans want to keep soldiers in Iraq so they can die?

    Comment by jimmy — October 30, 2006 @ 10:26 pm - October 30, 2006

  39. Then it would make sense to withdraw all US troops from Afghanistan as well, wouldn’t it, jimmy?

    After all, you say that “either way, terrorists have been emboldened, their numbers increase, they find justification for this violence toward us and they use whatever happens to their advantage”.

    I vote we simply continue to get rid of regimes that defy international law, support terrorism, and regularly threaten acts of violence against the United States. After all, protecting the US is a reason that we have a military in the first place.

    Not that you and your fellow Democrats have any respect for them anyway.

    Comment by North Dallas Thirty — October 30, 2006 @ 10:52 pm - October 30, 2006

  40. Yes, I, too, salute that brave solider and his comrades fighting in Afghanistan. I regret that the Bush Administration has pretty much abandoned their mission in Afghanistan.

    I’ve been a Republican since before I was old enough to vote the first time. I’ve always voted Republican in presidential elections and mostly Republican in other races. I’ve worked in many Republican campaigns and contributed money to Republican candidates.

    But, GayPatriot, the Republican Party I see today is not the same GOP that first attracted me to its tent. I will no longer vote for a candidate just because he has an R after his name.

    My congressman is an example. He’s an empty suit who robotically parrots GOP talking points written out on the 3 by 5 cards handlers supply him. I’m insulted that the Republican Party believes he ought to sit in Congress.

    But he’s in trouble — seems he ventured out on his own absent his 3 by 5 cards. The House Republican Caucus isn’t all that big and someone who’s been there as long as my congressman has should know them all. But he told the press back here that he did not know Mark Foley. Even though they lived across the street from each other in Washington and participated in a block party fundraising event for their campaigns. People in this part of the country don’t like liars and the empty suit has slipped enough that the DNCC is funding ads for his opponent.

    Comment by Ashley Hunter — October 31, 2006 @ 1:14 am - October 31, 2006

  41. Oops! In #40 I hit “submit” before finishing my comment.

    If my congressman loses and is replaced by a Democrat less willing to support the debacle in Iraq the solider who wrote the letter you printed can “thank” the Republican Party for running an imbecile simply because he votes the (far) right way on issues not really important to the viability and security of the United States.

    Comment by Ashley Hunter — October 31, 2006 @ 1:48 am - October 31, 2006

  42. Ashley, just curious… who’s the mystery “empty suit” GOP Congressman that represents your area?

    Comment by Michigan-Matt — October 31, 2006 @ 10:16 am - October 31, 2006

  43. I vote we simply continue to get rid of regimes that defy international law, support terrorism, and regularly threaten acts of violence against the United States. After all, protecting the US is a reason that we have a military in the first place.

    You had better leave out the part about defying international law. Otherwise you would need to throw Bush and Cheney and Rumsfield into jail.

    Comment by Patrick (Gryph) — October 31, 2006 @ 11:58 am - October 31, 2006

  44. Unfortunately, anon1, what soldiers see that people like you don’t is what exactly Iraq was like under Saddam — and how it is now.

    I can’t say it’s completely your fault, though; as a good DNC bot, you’re simply not aware of what Iraq was like pre-war because your masters wouldn’t tell you. They fed you the Michael Moore view in Fahrenheit 9/11 — the benevolent leader ruling the peaceful and quiet kite-flying paradise. That’s why people like Gryph shriek that Bush, Cheney, and Rumsfeld somehow violated international law in getting rid of Saddam; it’s based on that.

    The reality is far different. And that is what soldiers see.

    You and your fellow leftists have pushed the theory for years that our soldiers are vicious, lobotomized, uneducated, baby-killing ogres, as Democratic Presidential candidate John Kerry just recently made clear — and as your statement makes obvious.

    We don’t believe it.

    Comment by North Dallas Thirty — October 31, 2006 @ 3:20 pm - October 31, 2006

  45. #45 – ND30, I wonder how the soldier in this article feels now that Kerry has labeled him an uneducated grunt.

    I’ve said it before on this blog and I’ll say it again – GOP holds both Houses in 2006. Only now I’m predicting bigger margins.

    Why? Easy. The Bay State’s answer to Herman Munster has just snatched defeat from the jaws of victory for the Dhimmicraps – again.

    Is THIS the face of a party that will defend America in the WOT? I think not.

    Regards,
    Peter H.

    Comment by Peter Hughes — October 31, 2006 @ 3:51 pm - October 31, 2006

  46. I live in america thankfully, not yemen or egypt. we have no need for any involvement in the middle east. let them kill each other or get a clue. our ancestors didn’t immigrate to this country to be the worlds police. mine came here to ESCAPE war. let the arabs pursue their way of life. it’s no skin off my back. the more we get involved, the less safe we are. all i care about is getting bin laden and the taliban. that’s 9/11. the rest is fine

    Comment by lester — October 31, 2006 @ 4:07 pm - October 31, 2006

  47. #44 US soldiers are actually conditioned, not just to take orders, but to think independantly. Our military is very different from some because we have the policy of defering to the expert and every soldier is an expert. Good discipline and order is just that, it makes it possible to move troops and supply them. It’s about movement. Creative thinking, problem solving, is rewarded. Initiative, independant motivation, is *rewarded*.

    The idea that military members have their minds clouded by conditioning to follow orders isn’t just wrong, but insulting. Intelligence, observation and analysis of the situation, those are necessary for our soldiers to function at professional levels. Dull obedience is the worst possible thing for effective functioning. Why do so many people think that’s what the military makes it’s people into, so that they only can see the truth of a situation when removed from the military environment?

    Is it the uniforms? Having worn one I don’t see it anymore, but only to the person wearing it. Do other people see the uniform and not the person?

    Comment by Synova — October 31, 2006 @ 4:28 pm - October 31, 2006

  48. #47 I’d agree with you lester, if I thought isolationism was possible anymore in the world. It’s just not.

    Comment by Synova — October 31, 2006 @ 4:29 pm - October 31, 2006

  49. #48 Synova: I don’t want to get into an argument about which I have no first-hand knowledge. But my best friend Jimmy (not the one here!) was in the Navy in 2000-2002, and he vividly describes an atmosphere that does, in fact, value conformity above all else. He definitely feels that the military killed some of his creativity and independence.

    Comment by kdogg36 — October 31, 2006 @ 4:36 pm - October 31, 2006

  50. #50 My brother got nicknamed a CID in the Army, civilian in disguise. 😉 People react to the situation differently, of course. But conformity only gets you so far and it will never make you shine.

    I don’t think that everyone has a personality suited to the military. I probably don’t either, but some things were trivially easy for me, such as following rules. Simple stuff like not bringing food into the dorm (Texas cockroaches) and yet others in my flight had no self discipline and even something that simple was a problem for them. Personally, I didn’t see the hardship. It would take more effort to break the rule than keep it. So why was it so nearly impossible for some people to keep it?

    I think that some people mistake rebellion against authority for thinking. I think that rebellion is often the most unthinking thing a person can do. But people see the military and all these people in their uniforms (which makes them look very uniform) and they’re all doing what they are told and they figure they must not be thinking, that they must not have their own opinions or observations about events? Why?

    #44 was suggesting that our soldiers, right smack in the middle of events and witnessing them first hand, were so incredibly mind numbed by the conditioning to follow orders that they couldn’t see the truth they were living until they got home and started watching the news.

    A military where that was true couldn’t function. Our mid-ranked enlisted soldiers are expected to evaluate and make decisions, serious ones, without applying for and waiting for specific orders. Consider the Raven 42 patrol. The decision to advance into the ambush was made on the spot by an enlisted soldier. The level and seriousness of responsibility given to any soldier requires respect for their judgement and ability to make decisions concerning their own area of responsibility. And we’re supposed to believe this can happen when they supposedly can’t even think clearly about the situation they are in?

    Comment by Synova — October 31, 2006 @ 6:33 pm - October 31, 2006

  51. ND40, rarely do I respond to you, because you’re the worst of your ilk, the type that speaks and is so convined that you’re right, that you come across as nothing but a another jerk with an opinion.

    Based on the fact that you can’t even get a simple thing like my name right, it seems obvious that your reading of my posts — and hence the intelligence of your response to them — is significantly lacking.

    Meanwhile, how dare you quote the troops that you and your fellow Democrats like Kerry say are ignorant and uneducated? You spit on them, call them baby-killers and butchers, and then you twist their words to support your pathetic assertions that the US needs to cut and run.

    Military leaders are frustrated with the Iraqis’ lack of progress, and rightly so. However, as even your own article points out, they are keenly aware of the fact that the consequences of arbitrary deadlines continue to outweigh the benefits.

    Comment by North Dallas Thirty — October 31, 2006 @ 6:45 pm - October 31, 2006

  52. People react to the situation differently, of course. But conformity only gets you so far and it will never make you shine.

    That is true. And I know that Jimmy, after a while, realized that he was not interested in a career in the Navy, so he probably didn’t feel much incentive to shine in that environment. The question is, what is cause and what is effect — in other words, did he leave because of the stultifying atmosphere, or did the atmosphere seem stultifying to him because he realized it wasn’t for him? Probably a little of both. At any rate, your point is well taken.

    Comment by kdogg36 — October 31, 2006 @ 6:46 pm - October 31, 2006

  53. synova- I’m not an isolationist, I support free trade. the era of US hegemony in the middle east is over. we either leave or they will tell us to leave in a way we don’t like.

    we can’t afford to remain in the middle east militarily. it doesn’t make us safer, and we have no right to do it. they drove the russians out, they’ll drive us out. and what is there for us? sand. we can buy the oil from whomever is there. that’s all we really care about anyway

    Comment by lester — October 31, 2006 @ 8:26 pm - October 31, 2006

  54. lester, get real. YOU ARE AN ISOLATIONIST.

    Comment by Calarato — October 31, 2006 @ 9:48 pm - October 31, 2006

  55. Phenomenally spot-on comment from James Taranto today:

    The Arabs and the Midterms
    “Arab governments are looking for change in U.S. policy in the Middle East after the midterm elections,” the Associated Press reports:

    “One thing they hope for is that a politically weakened President Bush would talk with Iran and Syria. They also hope he would show greater interest in the Palestinians and find a way out of the crisis in Iraq.”

    So if you want a politically weakened president cutting deals with terror-sponsoring dictatorships, vote Democratic on Nov. 7.

    Comment by Calarato — October 31, 2006 @ 10:12 pm - October 31, 2006

  56. Cal, as I’ve said before on this blog – who do the terrorists support in these elections? You’ve brilliantly given the answer from the source.

    Regards,
    Peter H.

    Comment by Peter Hughes — November 1, 2006 @ 12:54 am - November 1, 2006

  57. Cut and run and flip-flop just cute little phrases that mean nothing. Tell it like it is. Kill and spend.

    Comment by Samuel — November 1, 2006 @ 1:34 am - November 1, 2006

  58. Cut and run and flip-flop just cute little phrases that mean nothing. Tell it like it is. Kill and spend.

    Comment by Samuel — November 1, 2006 @ 1:34 am - November 1, 2006

  59. Samuel, I think you are off your meds too.

    Regards,
    Peter H.

    Comment by Peter Hughes — November 1, 2006 @ 1:40 am - November 1, 2006

  60. calorato- get real you’re a WAR MONGER.

    Comment by lester — November 1, 2006 @ 1:25 pm - November 1, 2006

  61. #62 – Speaking of someone who is off his meds…

    Regards,
    Peter H.

    Comment by Peter Hughes — November 1, 2006 @ 3:32 pm - November 1, 2006

  62. #62 – lester – Since that’s what the lefties of the day also called Churchill and Reagan, you’ve put me in great company. I appreciate the compliment!! 🙂

    Comment by Calarato — November 1, 2006 @ 3:46 pm - November 1, 2006

  63. they were wrong. and the far right wanted reagan to attack moscow, tehran and “stay the course” in beirut. thankfully he ignored them and we had the awesome eighties. reagan was more of an isolationist really.

    Comment by lester — November 1, 2006 @ 7:01 pm - November 1, 2006

  64. Regardless of your issues with individual candidates, WE OWE IT TO OUR TROOPS TO VOTE NEXT WEEK.

    If for nothing else, to send them the message that we are supporting them through thick and thin.

    Don’t be a coward. You have no rationalization for not voting except laziness.

    Comment by Scooter — November 2, 2006 @ 11:12 pm - November 2, 2006

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