If you had not heard, the Democrats passed the Iraq funding bill without the time lines for a troop withdrawal. That's $100 billion to keep fighting a war that this president has waged unsuccessfully for five years and has killed nearly 3500 American soldiers.
This gives me yet another example of why I cannot commit to one of our two political parties. As Lewis Black once said, the Democratic party is a party no ideas and the Republican party is a party of bad ideas. This is not a good combination. And the people in both parties who actually demonstrate the ability to think, the ones willing to say what reality is, such as Republican Congressman Ron Paul or Democratic Senator Joseph Biden, are minimized and pushed aside in favor of politicians who make better bumper stickers than leaders. I know Bush and the rest of the White House carries the lion's share of the blame for getting us into this disaster, but the opposing party and the mainstream media also share responsibility for enabling a President who had no business holding his position in the first place. This has been a constant pattern of behavior for the Democrats, much like a spouse in an abusive relationship. Bush makes empty pledges of bi-partisanship and the Democrats keep giving him another chance, and then he again pulls some stunt and violates his word. And then, rather than leave him or make him accountable for what he has done, the President and his advisers threaten, coerce, and sweet talk the Democrats into believing that he deserves one more chance, that he can change, that he's doing it for their own good, and that he'll never do it again. But then, of course, he does.
There is one element of passing this funding bill that may pay off in September, when the funds run out (yes, it costs $100 billion to go to war just for the summer). At that time the continuance of the war will be up for debate and at that point the Democrats will be able to say that they have given the President all of the support he needs, allowing him to attempt his troop surge and giving him the financial means to do so. This will put them in a position to reign in his war efforts and demand that he end this debacle. Still, I have to ask why, after five years, are we still allowing this to continue? Why not just bring the troops home?
Georges Clemenceau once said, "War is too important to be left to the generals" and it may very well be said that sedition is too important to be left to the politicians. It is up to the people to put the war to an end. I'm no pacifist, but this conflict is one of the stupidest and most disastrous foreign policy decisions made by our government in decades, over shadowing the interventions in South American during the Reagan era and the Vietnam War. This is not a matter of Democrat versus Republican or conservative versus liberal. This is a matter of seeing what is, realizing what has to be done, and doing it. And so, on this Memorial Day, here are my modest suggestions for how we can win the war against the Bush administration:
- For all of us on the home front: (A) Withdraw all support for any politician, Democrat or Republican, who does not demand the with drawl of our troops. Some will be up for re-election in November and can be removed. There is just enough time to demand a recall election on the November ballot for those who will not support our with drawl, especially after the evaluation coming in September. (B) Educate your fellow citizens on the nature of the war, inform them about what is really happening, and build grass roots activism in your community. (C) Abandon media outlets that will not provide accurate or penetrating coverage of the war and support those who do. This means giving up Fox News and CNN and many mainstream newspapers and looking to international sources like NPR and the BBC. (D) Abandon businesses that cooperate with the White House projects like illegal wiretapping. (E) Demand the impeachment of the President. Contact our politicians with the same outrage we saw toward Don Imus' remarks about the Rutger's basketball team and send them the message that it's either him or them.
- To families of soldiers in the field: Keep sending them care packages of body armor, food, and other essential supplies. Also, send them information about what is going on here and information about the true nature of this conflict. It may seem silly to send troops in the middle of action stories about the war, but you can't see the forest for the trees and most soldiers are denied access to non-military approved information. The supplies and information add up to an escape package that will lead to my next point.
- For the soldiers in the field: Refuse to follow orders or carry out any more missions until the American government agrees to set a withdrawal plan. If the government refuses, abandon your posts and leave Iraq. Use the tanks, trucks, airplanes, and other means of transport and just go.
- For soldiers currently on leave or preparing to be deployed: Don't go. Show support for your brothers and sisters on the field by refusing to follow orders given by those who don't care about you and don't know how to run a war.
That is my four point plan to win the war for America. And it is a war worth fighting. Remember, George Bush and his companions hate us for our freedom and if we don't fight them, they will follow us into our homes.