Wealthy Frenchman

Saturday, July 28, 2007

Try telling the truth here, so we don't die over there

By Cameron Castle

"WE are fighting them there, so we don't have to fight them here!"

There are two things inherently wrong with such statements.

One: They attacked us here, when George Bush was completely ignoring them. (See * below.) Two: This strategy implies that as long as we are willing to supply enough U.S. soldiers to walk the streets of Baghdad to get shot or blown up, we, here at home, can feel safe.

Both of those points make my mind want to blow up like a roadside bomb.

I do not want to hear our president or any supporter say those words again. It is a made-up turn of phrase designed to repel reasonable discussion and energize the diminishing support group for this administration.

Here is the Bush administration's logic:

They are so busy killing our soldiers in Iraq that they just can't find the bandwidth in their delegation of assignments to attack an airport in America.

But, if we were to bring our troops home, they would then somehow follow them back to the U.S., make it through airport and homeland security en masse and, now that our soldiers are stationed back at home ... attack us.

The more one tries to extrapolate the logic of the initial sentence of this essay, the more ludicrous it sounds.

Yet, we continue to hear it.

It is like Dick Cheney harping about "the aluminum tubes for Saddam's nuclear centrifuge machine," months after anyone tuned in enough to be, let's say, awake, knew that was a preposterous and laughable attempt at fear-mongering.

I found a muffler on the garage floor of my friend's garage. Even though it is not really a car muffler, I am sure that he is very close to creating a functioning 12-cylinder Jaguar XKE that he then is going to drive like crazy through the neighborhood, killing innocent children walking to school.

They say, "Fight them there, not here."

They say, "Aluminum tubes."

And the media play it, and enough people repeat it and believe it.

Somebody has to stand up in front of the camera and say, "What? What did you just say? That is ridiculous. That is the 20th time, Mr. Cheney, you have mentioned those tubes, and I am not going to allow you to say it again."

Like in the movie "Network," the audience would cheer.

"We are mad as hell, and we are not going to take it anymore!"

The situation over in Iraq is a tangled mess that seems nearly impossible to solve. Bush and his advisers got us into this mess and I cannot believe that I heard him say that it is up to the next president to get us out.

But until that happens, we need to try to work through this nightmare in the most intelligent and strategic way possible. We need to create some stability in that country and we need to do it with the least loss of life.

The current strategy seems to be simply, "If we kill enough of them, we will win."

The first step to finding an end to this war that George Bush chose to start is speaking honestly about it.

Purposely deceptive statements, such as "Fight 'em over there, so we don't fight 'em over here," are more destructive than the bombs ripping through the nonreinforced floorboards of our Humvees.

(* Bush failed to meet with the head of counterterrorism between the time he took office and Sept. 10, 2001. His attorney general, John Ashcroft, presented him with the most important issues facing the country, daily. Terrorism was not on the list. Bush took the month of August 2001 off, after being on the job for only six months and 20 days, making it impossible to meet daily with the head of the CIA, something his predecessor did daily for eight years — terrorist threats being No. 1 on his administration's list of issues.)

Cameron Castle is a freelance writer from Snohomish.


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