Today is it. Five years since we invaded and occupied Iraq. 5 years since our men and women began dying, to the tune of 4,000. Five years since we began spending TEN BILLION dollars a week. Five years since we were promised, "It'll be quick," and "they'll greet us as liberators," and, "the oil in Iraq means the war will pay for itself." Five years since, "Mission Accomplished."
I watched the demonstrators, sick to my stomach to realize we are STILL there, with no real end in sight. Sick to my stomach at the cost in lives lost, tens of thousands of American lives destroyed, unknown (because Bush refuses to let them be counted) numbers of Iraqi lives lost and destroyed. Sick to my stomach at the effect it has had on our economy... can anyone REALLY believe that the 'downturn' (ie-- recession) that Bush has been ignoring for years and only FINALLY admitted when he was given no choice, is not partially the result of the deficit spending we've taken on, the selling of our country (in the form of debt) to the Chinese and Japanese, the printing of worthless money to stem the tide of that debt which causes the VALUE of that money to freefall, the 'spend, spend, spend or the terrorists will win" attitude???? I don't see how anyone can claim otherwise.
And Bush is STILL telling us this is a noble and justifiable use of 'lives and treasure.' FINALLY, FINALLY, the majority of people beg to differ. I fear it's too late, though. I worry that no matter who is elected, we are so far in that we will not be able to get out. We simply CANNOT go on spending the kind of money we're spending and sacrificing the lives we're sacrificing. Our police officers are now having trouble getting bullets for their guns, and those they CAN get are costing almost half again as much as before the war. The suppliers' stated priority is to provide ammunition for our troops, which IS, of course, absolutely necessary. However, our police at home are now less safe and more of the budget is going to that rather than other things like pay increases, maintenance of cars, purchase of new cars, PAL activities, etc.
We also have absolutely NO IDEA of the cost just in MONEY for the services the returning vets who've been traumatized, emotionally or physically, often permanently. These are costs that we will be paying for DECADES. And, of course, we MUST pay them. We OWE it to them. They pay the cost in the destruction of the lives they've known, we pay the cost in money to attempt to repair or support those lives. This war WILL, however, aside from the emotional cost, continue to cost us BILLIONS for decades, even if we are NOT in Iraq for 100 years, as McCain thinks.
Thanks for the legacy, Mr. Bush. I'm sure our grandchildren will thank you while they attempt to dig themselves out from under it.