To the editor:
Is this president the most careless in recent memory? President Bush regularly declares that the war in Iraq will set the course for peace and prosperity in the Middle East, that a democratic Iraq will be a beacon of hope throughout the region and that a progressive democratic government in Iraq will be a blueprint for change for its neighbors. Yet in a 50-minute State of the Union address, the president spent hardly more than five minutes recycling failed policies and broken promises.
Sending troops to war is the most difficult decision a president can make. The commander in chief owes it to the country to openly debate and honestly assess the danger, particularly if additional troops are required. It is so disappointing to see the president openly admit he is not happy with his own handling of the war but stubbornly refuse to consider and act in opposition to the advice of many Republicans, the majority Democrats, the bipartisan Iraq Study Group, retired generals and nearly 70 percent of the country.
If Iraq is the central front to the war on terror, and the battle against Islamist extremism is the "decisive ideological struggle of our time" and the "fight for our way of life," then why commit only 150,000 troops to the war? Why refuse the counsel of the Iraq Study Group? Why ignore the midterm election results? Either the president is not being forward about the true nature of the war, or he is not equipped to properly fight it.