Haditha... is it fated to become the 21st Century’s My Lai, just as Wounded Knee was the 19th Century’s? I trust not, but let the investigators do their work first, BEFORE we start bandying about those kind of ugly analogies. As a veteran, my first instinct is to give the benefit of the doubt to the Marines, but let’s wait and see.
Until the Haditha Report comes out, there seem to be two issues in play here: 1) did that squad of Marines kill those civilians in cold blood? And, 2) was there a “cover up” afterwards? Oh but wait, there is a third issue – are certain politicians attempting to use this unfortunate incident, regardless of the final “truth,” to support their continuing attempt to return to power?
I can’t comment on whether either of the first two things happened or not, and NO one should at this point. (As for the third issue, you KNOW what I think already!) But ONE idiot who has already made up his mushy mind on the first two issues is a democratic congressman from Pennsylvania, John Murtha, a retired Marine officer, whom I think has gone off the deep end. In fact, he’s made a series of teary-eyed proclamations and red-faced assertions concerning Haditha.
To me, the man is a contradiction of terms anyway – an ex-Marine AND a defeatist? That is simply a weird and unfathomable combination. I believe the guy has a couple of agendas: he wants his party to make some “political hay” out of what he calls “an unjust war,” and he’s suffering from post-Vietnam “quagmire syndrome.” Here’s what I think is going on with this emotional wreck and proven windbag:
The democrats are using him as their willing poster boy as anti-war spokesman, expressly because of his military background, which includes a bronze star from a tour in Vietnam. When I first saw his weepy tirade, where he argued that we should immediately remove our troops from harm’s way in Iraq, I couldn’t believe it. What he, Pulosi, Kucinich and the despairing left want, are for us to declare defeat and run away, leaving the whole thing a mess, and easy pickings for the Islamo-fascists. In other words, it would be an obvious Bush failure. Boy, wouldn’t that help their chances going into the 2008 general election! There, now you know EXACTLY how I think about issue number three above.
Historically speaking, the democrats gave Vietnam to the murdering communists in 1973, when they ended all economic and military support for the already viable South Vietnamese government, and that was AFTER we had it won. Now, they can’t wait to create another defeat, but this will be a whole lot worse and indefensible since it will empower criminals who want to destroy Western Civilization. Murtha, or at least his “masters” seem to welcome the worst outcome possible from the Haditha situation, because they think it will make THEIR case that we are fighting an unjust and unwinnable war. For me the only real “un” here is UN-believable!
Murtha’s latest teeth gnashing episode is where he spewed angrily that the Marine Corps as an organization purposefully covered up the report of possible wrongful civilian deaths in Haditha. I think two other situations are in play on this one, and that’s besides Murtha’s already obvious slant against staying in Iraq. The first is that he is probably “sourcing” Marines from within the battle theater, or possibly from inside the Pentagon itself. I’ll bet you he is corresponding with this source (or sources), because he found one or two folks there that feel as he does – an easy thing to do in this age of instantaneous E-mails.
His fuming accusation that upper-level types in the USMC covered up, and are now whitewashing the investigation seems to stem probably from these, his “malcontented” sources in the Marines. I believe this because he made these outrageous allegations BEFORE any final report has been issued from the Haditha investigation team. He practically stormed in and then out of the press conference when he did this. And that leads me to a final gut feeling about this guy – the congressman suffers from PTSD.
I say this, because for a Marine of his caliber to act this way, so outwardly over-emotional and seemingly out of control, he MUST have something working on him from the “inside.” NO person in his lofty position in government should act this way – it’s completely irresponsible. I have worked with more than a score of veterans now who have displayed this same betraying symptom. Jack Murtha needs help from both his priest and his psychiatrist.
Knowing this, I feel sorry for the man; but you know what? He should NOT be where he is – in a position of power where his condition of anxiety is tainting his abilities of judgment and self-control. I believe the man is dangerous in that he is undermining the security for our nation, and it is disgraceful that the liberals of his party are using him in this way. The man needs treatment, and that should be obvious to anyone who has observed him. In the meantime, we should simply ignore his outbursts and allegations about Haditha, and just wait for the outcome of the investigation, and more importantly, CONTINUE to fight terrorism where it is now centered, IN IRAQ!
Rationale for Cong. Murtha's pronouncements: Maybe because he belongs to the other side politically speaking?
He has just announce that he will be vying for the position of Pelosi, when they surely will win in the next elections. Pelosi for her part has already planned for the speakership of the house.
Not condoning politicians use of situations like this for power gain, but what if Murtha ends up being right on his assumptions?
Being in the middle, I see it on both sides and it makes me wish we had a democracy instead of a republic.
By reading between the lines, I see that you agree with my important point, that is, that some one in Mutha's position should not be assuming anything about what happened at Haditha. That is irresponsible, pure and simple.
And here's another point, his squeals and protests have contributed nothing to the conduct of the investigation. It would have happened if he had never thrown a single verbal tantrum. All he's done is show how emotionally unstable and nonjudicious he is.
When it comes to our armed forces possibly committing atrocities, I am NOT in the middle. If its determined that these guys murdered civilians in a pique of rage, then they should be drawn and quartered. I was already internally committed to joining the marines when the My Lai Massacre investigation and court martial hit the news. I followed it closely, and in my mind I came to the conclusion that I would rather lose my own life than to lose my soul in such a situation. There is no excuse for that sort of atrocious conduct, especially now, with our completely professional and all volunteer force.
Ed, there shouldn't be a "what if" thing going on with ANY of our leaders. Murtha represents those marines more than he represents the well-being of any Iraqi. It seems that all he's doing is immorally advancing his personal political position. If he wasn't so unstable, I think that would occur to him. He's lost it man....
Several of the men involved in that post IED firefight are saying that they returned fire at the terrorists inside the house that ended up with all the bodies in question. They say they followed all ROEs. To do a complete investigation, the examiners MUST be allowed to do some forensics on those bodies. The people making all the charges are not allowing that to happen, ostensibly because of Islamic law. I suspect that they are more interested in being paid off for their loss, AND the prospect of embarassing the US while fueling cut-and-run folks like Dean, Pulosi and Murtha is a big fat bonus for them. The dems are trying to CREATE another Tet Offensive, where public opinion began to shred, even as we were kicking the tar out of the communists.
The more I hear about what happened in Haditha, the more I suspect that those people were either killed by crossfire, or were slaughtered by the terrorists. The chances that those marines killed those innocents purposely and in cold blood is about as likely as the chances that OJ didn't kill Nicole. Of course, without the bodies we may never know the entire truth, and that would seem to be just fine with certain folks, namely American defeatists and Iraqi Sunnis and terrorists.
Ed, you're about the only guy who doesn't always agree with me. I enjoy the repartee. Thanks!
Oh, and a true democracy would require a referendum for every major government decision. It would sort of resemble government in the style of American Idol. We'd all just call in or text our individual preferences. There would be no need for an executive branch, or for any branch. We could make laws and adjudicate court decisions in the same manner. I think a Republic is the only way to go. It keeps policy stable and not will-o-the-wisp. Clinton's administration was close to a democracy since he made most of his big decisions based on popular opinion as reflected in the polls, all at the behest of his advisor, Dick Morris.
American opinion is fickle, it changes depending on single events such as Hurricanes or anomalies in war, or it can vary depending on how high gas happens to be that day. It's no way to run a complex and diverse country such as this, don't you think?
You may be right on the democracy thing. I would at least see the end of the electoral college and two party system and open it up. We seem to be electing more radical (leftists and rightists) who don't represent the majority.
Back to Haditha. I think I agree with everything you said. The point that I was trying to drive fourth was that accusing Murtha for his assumptions are no better than Murtha assuming he knows the truth. I prefer to wait for the investigation to prove Murtha wrong and then we can judge him. If the opposite happens, then everyone attacking Murtha will look bad.
And as always, I enjoy the debates here.
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