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franklin county times

Give the military more time

By Staff
Kim West
Franklin County Times
I have never been a Toby Keith fan, but I have found myself singing along to his new song, "Love Me If You Can."
I think the chorus line in the song, "Hate me if you want to, love me if you can" kind of sums up our country's perceived attitude towards the rest of the world, especially since we're at war in Iraq and Afghanistan.
I think the problem with war in general is that it never fixes things – it just makes everything more complicated. If you look at history, war has been around ever since organized groups of people came into contact with each other. I think the U.S. is the best country in the world, and I'm sure Israelis, Japanese, Turks, Brits, etc. think the same thing about their countries. But I think there's a perception, especially in Europe and the Middle East, that our country is war-happy and uncaring about the rest of the world, which is ironic since most of our citizens despise war, and we're a country that gives a lot of aid to each other and abroad.
And since we're at war, a lot of the good things that the U.S. does is overlooked. It doesn't matter at this point why we're in Iraq (let history point fingers) – what matters is that we don't get out of there as hastily as we went in, justified or not.
This war is not like a football game that can be called due to lightning or the mercy rule. It doesn't matter if some people don't like the coach (President Bush), or if the team has players that aren't performing up to par (Iraqi government, Congress). I think our military can succeed if we let them. I sincerely believe that our military didn't lose the conflict in Vietnam – our government did.
I wish the Democrats and Republicans could back off their campaign rhetoric and figure out a way to help the military end its involvement in a way that doesn't involve leaving because of a politically-motivated deadline.
I guess we're used to second-guessing people, everyone from football coaches to American Idol judges. But since this war is much more important than a game or TV show, I think we should listen to the military commanders and give them and our troops time to complete their mission.