Political figures are wrong about Iraq

Published 11:26 am Monday, October 8, 2007

By By Foster Kizer
I would like to share some facts that show why President Bush, General Patraeus, senators Shelby and Sessions and Congressman Bonner are wrong about the Iraq War.
Recently the Republican Party voted to condemn MoveOn.Org for that organization's add lambasting General Patraeus' report on the status of the ill fated surge fiasco in Iraq. What next, are we going to see censorship for everything that the majority of our citizens say that goes against the republican party and their war mongering views? I thought this was the land of free speech.
Let me share a few things that prove that General Patraeus' views are dead wrong about this war.
The General is using funny math. According to the "Washington Post," the General and the Pentagon are using a bizarre formula for measuring the violence in Iraq. Here are a few examples of this strange way of counting casualties: Deaths by car bombs do not count and assassinations count only if your are shot in the back of the head – not the front. This must make perfect sense to the Republican Party, the General and the President, but it sure does not make sense to me.
The Iraqis themselves believe that the surge has failed. According to a massive new ABC/BBC poll, every single Iraqi polled in Baghdad (the primary target of the "surge") said it had made security worse. Overall 70 percent of all Iraqis polled think the escalation worsened rather than improved security conditions. An independent Government Accounting Office (GAO) report found that violence is up. A comprehensive GAO report ordered by Congress found that the average number of daily attacks against civilians have remained unchanged from February to July 2007. In August things got worse, with Iraqi civilian casualties rising according to the Associated Press and the "Los Angeles Times." Why does the President fail to listen to his own GAO reports?
And for our troops, it has been the bloodiest summer yet. More U.S. troops died every month this year compared to the same month last year. And yet the Bush Administration and the Republican Party believe the nonsense that General Patraeus reported. The General's report does not count the number of American Civilian casualties in Iraq either. That number is now greater than 1,000.
I am sure that General Patraeus is a fine and dedicated military officer. I believe however, that he reported only what his Commander and Chief (the President) and the Republicans wanted to hear. General Patraeus claimed that he compiled his report without conferring with the White House. But the Washington Post recently reported that the General or his staff joined daily conference calls with the White House and former Republican National Committee chairman Ed Gillespie this summer to "map out ways of selling the surge." "The Washington Post" further reported that Gillespie's White House political unit was hard-wired to the General's military unit.Now I am not the wisest political pundit, but this does not sound like the General compiled his report without the White House swaying his final views on the surge.
I encourage all our local citizens to contact our Senators and Congressman Bonner and insist that we develop a clear plan for withdrawal from this quagmire. We have sacrificed enough of our men and women in uniform.To add insult to injury the Republican Party overwhelmingly voted NOT to extend the time between deployments for our troops. Just how much do Senators Shelby and Sessions and Congressman Bonner expect of our troops. These republican representatives have become our modem day War Mongers. I doubt any of them have a son or daughter fighting this useless war. But they expect you to sacrifice your family members or even yourself if you are a member of the armed forces.
Our Senators and Congressmen need to hear our views on this useless war.If enough of us contact them and insist that we start immediate withdrawal of our troops, maybe we can turn things around. This is a country based on freedom of speech. Please exercise that freedom before it is taken away.
Foster Kizer is owner of Royal Oaks Bed &Breakfast. He can be reached at 368-8722.

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