Monday, December 05, 2005

Wasted Lives; Why 'Staying the Course' Does not Work

The Peking Duck: Bob Herbert: Black Hole in Iraq: "In Mr. Shroeder's view, President Bush's war policies have been both tragic and futile. 'Staying the course,' he said, is like continuing to pour water into a hole in the sand at the beach, 'a process that gets you nowhere.'

'My son told us two weeks before he died that he felt the war was not worth it,' Mr. Shroeder said. 'His complaint was about having to go back repeatedly into the same towns, to sweep the same insurgents, or other insurgents, out of these same towns without being able to hold them, secure them. It just was not working, and that's what he wanted to get across.'

Mr. Shroeder dismissed the idea that criticism of the administration and the war was evidence of a lack of support for the men and women fighting in Iraq. 'You can support the troops and be critical of the policy that put them there,' he said.

He took issue with the public officials who insist that his son died for a 'noble cause,' however comforting that might be to believe. On the contrary, he feels that Augie's life 'was wasted.'

Recalling his last conversation with his son, Mr. Schroeder said, 'I asked him, 'Do you feel like you're protecting your family and other Americans back here?' And he said, 'No. Not at all.' '

He said Augie felt that he was not accomplishing anything. 'He thought it was a waste.'"

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