We have to do something in Iraq
There's an escape?
Heading for the exits in Iraq
As Hil rips Rumsfeld, both parties
sound prepared to accept defeat
Clinton is certainly looking for the lifeboats. Flayed by her party's wackadoo wing for not turning on the war, she cleverly staged her showdown. She had demanded that Rumsfeld appear before the Armed Services Committee and got her way. When her turn came, she blistered him with a statement that used words like "strategic blunders" and "incompetence" and accused him of "presiding over a failed policy." Even a question was an attack: "Given your track record, Secretary Rumsfeld, why should we believe your assurances now?"
Rummy let out a "my goodness gracious," and protested that "I've never painted a rosy picture," saying "I understand this is tough stuff."
It was good theater and served Clinton's aim of appeasing her party's growing anti-war drift. Coming on a day when a poll showed Connecticut Sen. Joe Lieberman 13 points behind a primary challenger who made Lieberman's war support the key issue, Clinton surely scored points with many Dems. She added to her total by later demanding that Rumsfeld resign, something she had refused to do before.
Republicans were pained, too. The panel's chairman, John Warner of Virginia, looked like he was presiding at a funeral. And John McCain of Arizona seethed as he questioned the generals about the plan to take American troops from other parts of Iraq to try to stop the violence in Baghdad. He likened it to playing the child's game of "whack-the-mole," with problems popping up all over the place. But McCain didn't call for hiking our troop strength, so it wasn't clear what he was suggesting.
Members of Congress often complain that the Bush administration ignores them, so now would be a great time for them to speak up about our next move in Iraq. That assumes, of course, that they have something to say besides complaining.
Do you actually read the Daily News?
Because the following words appeared there Saturday
Are the Hsia's wackadoos, Mr. Goodwin? Because that is why many people oppose the war, because there seems to be no end to the dying.
Hai Ming Hsia, 37, of New York City, grew up in a Chinatown housing project and was on his second tour of duty when he was killed in Ar Ramadi on August 1. Hsia, who joined the Army at age 33 to help support his newborn son, was riding in a combat convoy when an explosion ripped through his vehicle, killing him instantly.
According to Hsia's mother, Nelida, 66, Hsia went into the Army because he knew he could not support his son with his job as a security guard. He had been there for three years, had his tour extended yet again and had only returned to Iraq a month ago after being home briefly on leave this summer.
"He didn't want to go back," said his mother. "He already missed out on so much with his son and his life, especially with his son. They were inseparable. He took him everywhere when he was home. He was his life."
Said his father, Ting Fang, 78: "He was my only baby, so I have a pain in my heart."
"President Bush took away my son, my only child," Hsia's grieving mother declared. "Now I have none."
As a lifelong Daily News reader, I have never seen so many funerals in your pages since after 9/11. I thought they would stop after a year or so, but the Iraq war just adds to them.
Remember Ramona Velez? She appeared in your pages a year ago. Her name sticks in my memory because she worked at the Statue of Liberty on 9/11. She later joined the Marines and was killed in a truck explosion outside Fallujah, Iraq.
She was 21 years old.
Increase our troop strength. Did you not notice Mr. Hsia had his tour extended because there are no more troops to send. And McCain has called for increasing troop strength for two years.
Have you ever called for people to enlist to fight in Iraq? No. Because you know the paper would be gutted if you wrote such a piece. It's easy to go after Clinton, but the reality is that Iraq is a mistake and neither you nor your editors or your publisher have the guts to call for people to enlist to fight in it. You expect the soldiers to come from thin air, apparently, or economic desperation, as what happened to the Hsia family.
War isn't a talking point, it is a tragedy, and one recorded in the pages of the Daily News. Grieving mothers, nearly passing out as the Marine or soldier hands her the flag and "the thanks of a grateful nation" is a regular feature in your pages, as was Richard Sisk's reports on a neglected Afghan war. Special Forces and artillerymen sitting on the border hunting the Taliban.
It's easy to be snide when someone else's kid is dying in Iraq. The reason Congress is having such a tough time is that papers like yours have consistently supported the war, regardless of what the readers feel.
So exactly what is wackadoo, the opinions of the majority of your readers, who have no love of the President either, or the idea that Iraq is a failure.
If you've bothered to read the latest polling, opposition to the war is a majority opinion, not the province of wackadoos, Mr. Goodwin. Why you would think this after week after week of grieving families in your pages astounds me. I know you get paid to think big thoughts, but at some point, when do you recognize failure when you see it.
posted by Steve @ 9:24:00 AM