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Old 07-21-2003, 07:02 PM   #91
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I agree with Pub Crawler, these are quite different circumstances than WWII or even the Gulf War. America was heavily divided in regards to the war.

Again, a problem with your chain of command is different than the Sec of Defense or Bush.

An another example:

Peaceful Warrior

By Chris Strohm and Ingrid Drake, Guerrilla News Network
July 21, 2003

Home Top Stories

Peaceful Warrior

By Chris Strohm and Ingrid Drake, Guerrilla News Network
July 21, 2003

As the U.S. occupation of Iraq extends with no end in sight, and the death toll for both U.S. soldiers and Iraqi civilians continues to mount, more voices of dissent from military personnel and families are audible every day.

One of the most poignant so far comes from a young Marine who gave an interview with Pacifica Radio's Peacewatch program the night before he was deployed to Iraq. He discussed his strong commitment to peace, and said the Bush administration was violating constitutional principles and misleading the country into an unjust war.

He was killed in late June, fighting a war he didn't believe in.

John's friends describe him as a passionate, intense person with an insatiable appetite for knowledge and a commitment to peace. He studied philosophy and peace with an emphasis on Middle Eastern affairs, particularly Iraq and Israel.

His friends say he went into the military under the Clinton administration to gain credibility, so that perhaps someday his beliefs on how to build a lasting peace in the Middle East would be taken seriously. In the months before his deployment, he helped organize anti-war campaigns, mainly working behind the scenes.

In his interview with Pacifica, John expressed outrage that a legitimate public debate on the war had not occurred. Many alternatives to combat were available, he explained, such as using money being spent for war to finance a grassroots Iraqi democracy movement that would rival the Baath regime, or promoting democracy throughout the Middle East to show people alternative forms of government.

"It is almost unimaginable to expect that this war is going to create a better peace for anybody with the exception of a very small percentage of people," he said.

He accused the administration of not talking honestly with the American public about potential consequences of a U.S. war on Iraq, such as the potential for urban combat, the psyche of the Iraqi people, the impact on the United Nations and the fate of the Middle East.

But even as he expressed doubts about the Bush administration's decision, he spoke eloquently about his patriotism, and looked to the highest ideals of the country for inspiration:

"I believe in the United States. I believe in the Constitution. I think it's perhaps one of the greatest documents ever written. I believe in the idea that we the people are sovereign and we determine our own destiny. We have a democracy and the Bill of Rights and freedom of expression, freedom of speech, freedom of religion and due process. Until the world is such a place that we can really live without the military, individual Americans have to step up and they have to serve."

The Bush administration, he claimed, had not made a credible case for war with Iraq, and was violating constitutional principles by sending troops into combat. He spoke of the Declaration of Independence, and how its writers vowed to be free of England, where their lives were ruled and determined by one man. "The constant rhetoric of the administration is that there's going to be one person who decides when we go to war," he said, "and that is such a blatant violation of every constitutional principle that our founding fathers came up with."

"But even beyond that, it's 'we the people' that this nation is about," he continued. "It isn't about politics or personal agendas or political agendas or economic agendas. And I believe that this war is not the right thing for America because it hasn't yet been proven conclusively that there is a threat to 'we the people' and I think that is the sole determining factor as to whether or not this nation should ever go to war."

With chilling foresight, John predicted that much could go wrong in a war with Iraq, saying the outcomes outlined by the administration were based on highly optimistic and rosy scenarios. He said it was unlikely that Iraqis would cheer the arrival of a U.S. occupying force, and that long-term urban combat could be a likely outcome.

Yet he went to Iraq, believing it to be his duty. And continued, even in the midst of combat, to exercise his belief in nonviolent resolution. One of his commanders wrote a letter after his death explaining a situation in which John negotiated a peaceful settlement to a potentially deadly situation. A group of Baath Party officials were found inside a house. Because he spoke Arabic, John entered the house and talked with the officials until he negotiated a surrender. His actions potentially saved the lives of both U.S. soldiers and Iraqis.

In letters home, John described the peace movement as "awesome," and said he hoped it would grow larger, never relent against the Bush administration, and help bring an end to the war.

Around June 20, those letters stopped.

Mods, sorry if I posted too much of this article, but I was very moved by this soldiers Patriotism, even in the face of his intellectual reservation. God Bless his family.

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Old 07-21-2003, 09:31 PM   #92
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"America was heavily divided in regards to the war."

Thats false. More than 80% of Americans supported the war. Nearly all Republicans in both the US House and Senate supported the war. More than half of Democratic congressman supported the war. More than 75% of the entire House and Senate supported the war. Few issues whether they be foreign or domestic ever get that much support. There was far more support for this war than during the first Gulf War. W's father barely got congress to approve the first Gulf War. The Vote in the Senate was 53 to 47.

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Old 07-22-2003, 01:50 AM   #93
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Originally posted by STING2
More than 80% of Americans supported the war.
And they were wrong.

More than half of Democratic congressman supported the war.
And they were wrong. And probably many of them were spineless.

Edited to fix tags.
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Old 07-22-2003, 04:23 AM   #94
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pub crawler,

I will concede that the majority is not always correct. But in this case, they are.

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