By Roger Propst
After getting back into town from a business trip, I decided to have
breakfast as I usually do at the Koffee Kup. Upon being seated, and
having just placed my order, my old friend, Joe approached and sat down
on the opposite side of my booth. It was immediately obvious from the
look on Joe's face and his agitated state, that something was not
sitting well with him. "Joe, you look like your blood pressure is so
high you're about to pop. What the heck's wrong with you?"
"Have you seen the latest nonsense about Bush and the war that guy that
writes for the Hur Herald has put on there? I replied that I had read it
the previous evening upon my return from my trip, and had some serious
reactions to it myself, but asked Joe to tell me what had him so upset.
"Well, I was still so excited and happy about last weekend's news that
our brave soldiers pulled that stinkin' coward, Hussein out of that rat
hole and locked him away where he can't hurt anyone anymore, and then I
read that blather that he wrote and didn't see a thing about the
capture. Instead it's nothing but a rehash of the same old b.s. about
lies, and radiation they've got on them from their own guns, and us
going in by ourselves, and on, and on."
Seizing an opening in the conversation as Joe took a much needed
breath, I said, "Joe, I felt the same way when I read the piece myself.
Anyone reading that article would believe we were the bad guys, and that
is what the writer believes. His opinions are from the extreme fringes
of the left wing of the political spectrum. He is one of the "BAF"
crowd, Blame America First. In the case of Iraq, when all else fails,
they start ranting about America being allied with Saddam in the
1980's. He was the better of two evils at the time, Iran being the
other. Remember, we were allies in WWII with Stalin's Russia. Foreign
diplomacy sometimes requires strange alliances."
By this time Joe had caught his breath, "I just can't understand how
someone could watch those video tapes of men with their hands and feet
tied being thrown off the roof of a building, others having their tongue
pulled out and cut off, and another guy having half his head cut off by
a sword when his executioner's aim was faulty, and say this war was
unnecessary. I cry every time they show those mass graves being
excavated while distraught relatives of missing loved ones frantically
search through skulls and body parts trying to find some identification
that might end their anguish of not knowing what may have befallen these
"Yeah, Joe, I feel the very same way! I understand we have located at
least 270 mass graves, and so far have confirmed they contain at least
300,000 bodies. Some are estimating the total will reach 1,000,000
before all is said and done. Saddam also used poison gas on the Kurds
in the north of Iraq, killing 5,000 men women and children, but this guy
says we started a completely unnecessary war. Without mentioning any of
this, he states in his article our President's hands have the blood of
hundreds of U.S. soldiers, and thousands of Iraqi civilians upon them.
Totally silent on whose hands really have innocent blood on them."
By this time, Joe had again caught his breath. "Yeah, did you see that
stuff about the soldiers thinking they were going over there for a
month? My dad fought in World War II; he left home in 1941, and didn't
get home until '45. He didn't talk much about the war, but he did tell
me once, he said, 'Son, some things are just worth fighting for! When
we saw what that madman had done to those people in those camps, we knew
we had been a part of something great.' And what's he talking about
flying body bags in at night and hiding them from the public?"
"Unfortunately, Joe, it's just a political complaint, because the
Administration doesn't want a circus atmosphere surrounding the
solemnity that should accompany these tragic events. War critics just
want this displayed on television screens and newspaper pages in hopes
of weakening the resolve of the American people. Americans know our
soldiers are dying over there, and they grieve with every loss. The
idea that the anti war people are somehow more compassionate is
Joe continued, "And another thing, I'm getting real tired of this guy
calling President Bush and his advisers liars. Clinton and all those
Democrats said the same thing about those weapons of mass destruction.
Even the U.N. inspectors said he had those weapons in 1998 when they
were forced to leave. Now Saddam says they were destroyed in 1991. If
Bush is a liar in 2002, then Clinton, Byrd, Kennedy and all those were
lying in 1998."
"Exactly, Joe! The fact of the matter is that the writer has
constantly called the President a liar, but is in fact a liar himself.
A direct quote from the article, 'They claimed it was indisputable that
Saddam Hussein was involved in the attack of September 11.' That
statement is a blatant lie! I challenge the writer to prove it by
producing a quote. Neither President Bush, nor any other administration
official ever made that claim. Another quote, 'These are people who
went on for months, all over TV, claiming they had conclusive evidence
that Saddam Hussein had tons of nuclear, chemical, and biological
weapons he was ready to use on the U.S. Every piece of that was
unreal.' That statement is another blatant lie! The intelligence the
Administration had may be proven to be inaccurate, but mistakes are a
far cry from intentional lies. If one buys the Iraqi line that all
weapons were destroyed in 1991, then all the edicts about them during
the Clinton administration were also lies. This guy tries to convince
us our President is a liar by lying himself; some argument!"
Joe jumped back in, "I am just very proud of my country and our brave
soldiers. Someone needed to help those poor souls in Iraq, and get rid
of that butchering Hussein. It was obvious the United Nations wasn't
going to do anything, especially with Saddam's trading buddies, France,
Russia, and Germany protecting him."
"I agree Joe, with one exception. History will ask why we waited so