A MARINE FROM THE FIRST GULF WAR RESPONDS TO A MARINE IN IRAQ
A new letter, presumably written by a Marine in Iraq, found it's way to me today. As this screed will undoubtedly be used by GOP operatives and neo-libertarian chickenhawks to justify Big Government Conservative Wars of Intervention (which they refuse to participate in personally), I've taken the time to issue a rebuttal.
And, as was explained via release of the script written for the speech, Senator Kerry was talking about President Bush. This is not debatable. It is a fact. Even Bill O'Reilly on FOX News has stated such. Lies don't become the truth just because you wear a uniform and deem them as such. Republican heavyweights like Dick Armey, Bill O'Reilly, Matthew Dowd and Tom DeLay have publicly admitted that Kerry was not trying to insult the troops, but had botched a joke about Bush. It is time to stop the Dittoheadedness.
If you are as smart as you claim, you have surely taken the time to investigate the facts. A script of Kerry's speech was issued days ago. It very clearly indicated the joke was about the President. Claims to the contrary are incorrect, in light of the evidence that has been available for nearly a week now. It appears from your words that you are closing your eyes and plugging your ears to any evidence that speaks to the contrary. This is not a mature and intellectual way for a fellow Marine to conduct himself.
Anonymous Marine said: "I am not a victim of President Bush. I proudly serve him because he is my Commander and Chief. If it was you who was President, I would serve you just as faithfully. I serve America Senator Kerry, and I am also providing a service to the good people of Iraq. I have not terrorized them in the middle of the night, raped them or murdered them as you have accused me of before. I am doing my part to help them rebuild. My role is a simple one, but important. You see Senator Kerry, like it or not, we came here and removed a tyrant (who terrorized Iraqis in the middle of the night, and raped them and murdered them). And we have a responsibility to see to it that another one doesnt take his place. The people of Iraq are recovering from an abusive relationship with a terrible government and its going to take some time to help them recover from that. We can't treat this conflict like a microwave dinner and throw a temper tantrum because we feel like its taking too long."
Given that you are an educated man, then you are fully well aware of our government's role in helping install Hussein in the first place. You would undoubtedly be aware that our own CIA assisted Hussein, as a young man, in attempting to assassinate a prior leader of Iraq. You would also be aware that many of the weapons of mass destruction previously possessed by the nation of Iraq were provided directly and indirectly by the United States. An educated man would also know that our nation maintained contact and supported the brutal dictator while he was abusing and murdering his own people. An educated man would be fully well aware that both Donald Rumsfeld and Dick Cheney had significant dealings with Saddam Hussein when he was at his most brutal. It is immoral and disgusting for such men to have financially and politically benefited from their prior relationships with bloody dictators while playing the "he's a dictator" card today. Surely, an educated and honest man would agree.
Further, a man in full possession of the facts, without an ideological axe to grind, would not pretend our government entered Iraq to depose an evil dictator. There are dozens more all over the world – just as bad or worse. An educated man knows that our Constitution – the law of our land – does not authorize our government to play the role of world policeman. An educated man knows we lack neither the financial resources, nor the manpower to depose all the world's brutal dictators. An educated man would never make such a strawman of an argument to excuse the hundreds of billions of dollars of debt our President and the impotent Congress have passed on to the citizens of this country. An educated man would not pretend that the world is now safer with an Iraq surrounded by porous borders and in the beginning stages of civil war. An educated man would know better and would spend some quality time acquainting himself with the advice of two-time Medal of Honor recipient Marine Major General Smedley Darlington Butler.
Anonymous Marine said: "Senator Kerry, you don't have to agree with this war. You don't have to say nice things about those of us who choose to make sacrifices for the rights of every American rather than sit back and simply feel entitled to it. But please Senator Kerry, if you're going to call me a stupid murdering rapist, stick by what you say. Don't tell me that I misunderstood or that you would never insult a veteran because you are one too. Having been there and done that does not give you a free pass to insult me."
As was pointed out previously, Senator Kerry was talking about the President and not insulting you. The draft of his speech released several DAYS ago contradicts your false claims to the contrary. Further, this war was not about the "rights of every American." Iraq was a crippled, miserable shell of it's former self. Iraq was not at war with the United States. Claims to the contrary are intellectually dishonest. No one in Iraq was taking away the "rights of every American." Our own elected and appointed representatives have been doing that for years.
My advice, as a Marine of a prior Persian Gulf conflict, would be to remember that the facts had been revealed days ago. Just because you want to believe something does not make it so.
This sounds remarkably like a partisan political statement. Given that it will be used for partisan political use by the GOP and an educated man would know this well, you may want to reconsider attaching your rank and service to such statements as they violate the Uniform Code of Military Justice.
Actually, you are not in Iraq defending American civil liberties, but you are following the orders of those in your chain of command. Iraq did not attack the United States. The United States has been interfering in the internal politics and government of Iraq since 1958, as an educated man such as yourself would undoubtedly be aware. It is intellectually dishonest and clearly political partisanship to willfully confuse wars of intervention with self-defense.
American civil liberties have been under attack for years from a domestic enemy of the Constitution that alternately wears the uniform of a donkey and elephant. The introduction of no-knock warrants, domestic surveillance, attempts to silence dissent, attempts to repeal attorney-client privilege, suspension of habeas corpus, and most of the PATRIOT Act are violations of the Constitution. We certainly do need defending – from those who willfully confuse nationalism with patriotism and raw power with legitimate authority.
In Liberty and not Republican or Democratic Partisanship,
Sergeant James A. Landrith, Jr.
United States Marine Corps