In this time of war, I ask, "Where is the outrage?" In the past 10 days, the Democratic leaders in Congress, and in particular Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, have, for all intents and purposes, advocated surrender in Iraq, despite the fact that a military defeat in Iraq is really only possible if we abandon our effort.
Sen. Reid said, "The war in Iraq is lost." His comments came just before our commander in the field, General David Patraeus, reported to Congress and the president on the progress of the "surge" in the war. On the heels of that remark, Sen. Reid publicly speculated as to how many Democratic seats could be won because of the war.
Sen. Reid voted for the war and for Gen. Patraeus but is now denigrating the war for political purposes. His remarks are disgraceful, demeaning to our troops, our commanders and to the American people.
It is interesting to note that during the same timeframe, we have seen the firing of a radio talk show host about demeaning comments. The constant babble and lament about Don Imus' unfortunate words went on for days over the airwaves and in print, but has there been a single utterance against Sen. Reid for his comments or dare I say, even any suggestion of his resignation?
Think back to WWII, if Congress at that time had an attitude similar to that of Sen. Reid, we would all be speaking German today.
We are in a war not of our choosing. One of our most beloved American cities, New York, was attacked on Sept. 11, 2001. We lost more than 3,000 lives that day. The enemy is different today. We are not fighting red coats against blue coats, North against the South. This enemy is in the shadows. The enemy makes itself known only through video tapes and terrorist actions. It is an ideological culture war we are fighting as well as a military struggle. The enemy is smart. They are wagering that if we begin to wane in our efforts and our interest in winning the battle, they will have won. They are behind the latest turmoil in Baghdad. Iraq is of great strategic importance to the Islamic terrorists. We know this because they have told us so themselves.
This war is not going to be ended soon. Unfortunately, I believe the war on Islamic terrorists will go on for the next generation. That is why it is so important for the American people to understand this is not a struggle for the short term, but for survival of our civilization. Negotiation and appeasement are not the answers. How do you negotiate with shadow figures or trust what they say? We must stand strong for our principles and values.
What Congress is trying to do is to micromanage the war to lessen the power of the Executive Branch. This is blatantly unconstitutional. The Constitution states that the Executive Branch, i.e. the president, State Department, Defense Department, have the power to set foreign policy and make decisions to wage war. Then comes the power of Congress to fund such efforts and oversee other matters of consequence.
We are the greatest power on earth. We have the best-trained military in the world. We must wholeheartedly support them and complete the effort.
As Winston Churchill spoke toward the end of WWII, as the war was beginning to tire his people, "Victory at all costs, victory in spite of all terror, victory however long and hard the road may be; for without victory there is no survival."
Carol O'Hare is a Routt County/Steamboat resident. She is active in various community efforts. She is a 'recovering sports journalist,' having written for such publications as Tennis Magazine, Sports Illustrated and various news organizations. She is an avid cyclist, tennis player, skier and a member of the Conservative Leadership Council of Northwest Colorado.