Eric Zorn prints a letter in the Tribune today from a father whose son was killed in Iraq. The letter is addressed to Mr. Bush. Excerpts:
I had many conversations with Kevin before he left to serve as well as during his deployment. The message he continued to send to me was that of incompetence. Incompetence by you, (Vice President Richard) Cheney and (former Secretary of Defense Donald) Rumsfeld. Incompetence by some of his commanders as well as the overall strategy of your decisions.
When I asked him about what he thought about your decision to â€œsurgeâ€? more troops to Baghdad, he told me, â€œuntil the Iraqis pick up the ball, we are going to get cut to shreds. It doesnâ€™t matter how many troops Bush sends, nothing has been addressed to solve the problem he started.â€?
Answer me this: How in the world can you justify invading Iraq when the problem began and continues to lie in Afghanistan? I donâ€™t want your idiotic standard answer about keeping America safe. What did Sadaam Hussein have to do with 9/11? We all know it had to do with the first Iraq war where your father failed to take Sadaam down.
Well George, you have succeeded in taking down over 3,100 of our best young men, my son being one of them. Kevin told me many times we are not fighting terrorism in Iraq and they could not do their jobs as soldiers. He said they are trained to be on the offensive and to fight but all they are doing is acting like policemen.
Well George, you or some â€œgeniusâ€? like you who have never fought in a war but enjoy all the perks your positions afford you are making life and death decisions. In the case of my son, you made a death decision.
You or Cheney or Rumsfeld will never know the anguish, the worry, the sleepless nights, the waiting for the loved one who may never return. If the soldiers were able to do their jobs and the egoâ€™s of politicians like you, your â€œcroniesâ€? and some commanders had their heads on straight, we would be out of this mess which we should not be involved with in the first place.
My family and I deserve and explanation directly from youâ€¦â€¦not some assistant who will likely read this and toss it. This war is wrong.
I want you to look me and my wife and daughter directly in the eye and tell me why my son died. We should not be there, but because of your ineptness and lack of correct information I have lost my son, my pride and joy, my hero!
Again, you, Cheney and Rumsfeld will never understand what the families of soldiers are going through and donâ€™t try to tell me you do. My wife, my daughter and I cannot believe we have lost our only son and brother to a ridiculous political war that you seem to want to maintain. I hope you and Cheney and Rumsfeld and all the other people on your band wagon sleep well at nightâ€¦.we certainly donâ€™t.
Proud father of a fallen soldier