Letter from the Editor 

Remember the "Coalition of the Willing"? It was all the rage back in 2003. President Bush managed -- by coercion, sweet-talk, bullshit, or a combination thereof -- to convince 25 countries that sending troops to invade Iraq alongside American forces was a good idea.

The coalition's forces once totaled 50,000 soldiers. Almost four years later, that number is down to around 15,000 -- and falling fast. Italy pulled out its remaining 3,000 troops last month. South Korea is down to 2,300 troops and is considering withdrawing all of its forces by the end of the year. Even Great Britain, our staunchest ally with 7,000 troops, is planning to cut its forces in half in the next few months. The bottom line is clear: The Coalition is no longer Willing.

And neither is the American public. In November, they voted the Republicans in Congress who enabled this fiasco out of power. Every recent opinion poll indicates that almost 70 percent of Americans think putting more troops in Iraq is a bad idea. And this is after Bush's dead-eyed speech to "rally" the country last week.

At least nine Republican senators have said the surge is a bad idea. Many conservatives, including George Will, Joe Scarborough, and Bush syncophant Peggy Noonan of The Wall Street Journal have come out against it. The bipartisan Iraq Study Group is against it. The former generals on the ground are against it. The Iraqi government is against it.

They all understand that sending 20,000 more Americans into a four-sided (and counting) civil war where every enemy fighter looks the same makes no sense. It's too little, too late. That's why other countries are pulling troops out. That's why the American public is deadset against the surge.

But the Decider hears no one. He listens only to his "heart." He says he won't change his mind, even if the only people who support him are "Laura and Mrs. Beasley [his dog]."

Now is the time, friends, to write letters to your congressman, to be loud and vociferous, to make sure we stop this fool before he kills again. Those are our precious troops, not his playthings. This is our country, not his.

Bruce VanWyngarden

brucev@memphisflyer.com

Keep the Flyer Free!

Always independent, always free (never a paywall),
the Memphis Flyer is your source for the best in local news and information.

Now we want to expand and enhance our work.
That's why we're asking you to join us as a Frequent Flyer member.

You'll get membership perks (find out more about those here) and help us continue to deliver the independent journalism you've come to expect.


Favorite

Speaking of...

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT

Blogs

Music Blog

Listen Up: Cruelty of the Heavens

News Blog

VIDEO: SUV Driver Swerves Into Cyclists

Intermission Impossible

Ostranders to Honor Memphis Performers Who Died During 2017-18 Season

News Blog

Memphis Pets of the Week (August 16-22)

News Blog

REI Opens Next Friday

News Blog

Stat: Gun Crimes in Shelby County

ADVERTISEMENT

More by Bruce VanWyngarden

Readers also liked…

ADVERTISEMENT
© 1996-2018

Contemporary Media
460 Tennessee Street, 2nd Floor | Memphis, TN 38103
Visit our other sites: Memphis Magazine | Memphis Parent | Inside Memphis Business
Powered by Foundation