Did anyone else see this piece in the Tribune a week or so ago? In it, Dave Letterman is quoted as follows:

Letterman said that like many Americans, he was so angered in the wake of the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks that he wanted to strike out, and didn't oppose the Iraq War at its beginning. As time has gone on, he said he has realized that was wrong.
Wait a minute, Dave, you don't get to change your mind, do you? Hey, let's put 200,000 people in Iraq...whoops, this war isn't as easy as I thought it would be. That was a bad idea, bring them home.

I guess this is why we don't take political advice from talk show hosts. (Well, most of us don't.)

The same goes for the rest of us in the 'public opinion polls' who have "changed our minds." You don't get to "change your mind." A war is a committment.

I am not saying Iraq was the right or wrong thing, or that we should or should not look for an exit. I am saying you don't get to "support" the war one day and "oppose" it the next. It just doesn't work that way. I'll bet most of the Poles and French "opposed" World War II.


Anonymous said...

Boy, isn't that the truth! I feel the same way as Letterman - I'd love to "take it back". But I can't and thanks for reminding me of that obligation. How many times have you heard someone say, " I don't support the war, but I do support our troops". How does that work?

Thanks for the reminder that there aren't any trade backs or do-overs here. We are at war. I supported it in the beginning. And I support it today. I want our troops to come home, just as soon as the job is done. I don’t believe a time-line or a pull-out plan is an answer to anything but a political platform. It’s marketing at it’s best; every American wants out of Iraq. But like most political marketing – it’s just an empty promise used to garner votes.

free thought said...

You are wrong. Due to the length of my explanation,I will post later to explain. Too much for a comment.

Anonymous said...

I would generally agree with you that we can't change our mind about the validity of a decision to go to war, but I question whether we are now at war. We went in after a specific objective, get Sadam and end his government control. Did that. End of War. I think we should have declared victory and left. Now we are not fighting a war we are engaged in another Police action which is a proven failure. You cannot police a foreign population by occupation. They don't like it and pretty soon you end up fighting the very people you say you are trying to protect. If we are at war, who exactly is the enemy? I am no expert, but my recolection is that America must declare war on specific government entities and not on groups of people without a specific country or government. If we are at war, what exactly is the Military objective? If we are not at war why can't we decide to quit loosing American lives in a foreign country? I like American effectivenes when we are actually at war. We are the best in the world and picking a target, making an effective plan and executing on that plan with the least amount of casulaties and destruction on either side. But I see no signs that we are conducting a war right now. I am not saying we should stop doing what we are doing but I sure think we have the right to question, examine and evaluate what we are doing.

GeeGuy said...

"You are wrong." Pretty rigid statement for someone named free thought!

I actually posted a long comment here, but Blogger crashed on me and I don't feel like re-typing it.

free thought said...

My response is posted at http://mountainfront.blogspot.com/

free thought said...

I republished my post so that I am no longer calling your piece a "rant." Even though you were ranting. Even though your indignation was probably feigned.

I thought it was the least I could do since I still think you are wrong, even after your lengthy comment explaining yourself.