Wednesday, June 13, 2007
Marines Fed Up With Politics [W. Thomas Smith Jr.]
The Los Angeles Times (hardly a bastion of conservatism) can no longer deny the reality of how the troops feel.
Fact is, U.S. Marines are sick of the politics about Iraq. And, as I've been reporting, they are tired of the distorted — and often flat-out wrong — poll findings about how they (the troops) are supposed to be feeling about the Iraq war.
The LA Times reports:
Under a sweltering Iraqi sky, [Lt. Gen. James N. Mattis, commanding general of Marine Forces Central Command] asked for questions from his troops.
Many were reluctant, but Marine Lance Cpl. Jack Kessel, 19, of Raleigh, N.C., stepped forward. Something had been gnawing at him as he and his buddies go about the business of winning hearts and minds in al-Anbar province: “How are we supposed to fight a war when people back home say we’ve already lost?”
Marines continue to exceed their re-enlistment goals. A recent study showed that those who have deployed twice to Iraq are more likely to re-enlist than those who have gone once. The Marine least likely to re-enlist is one who has not deployed to Iraq.
Mattis told the Marines to believe their own eyes rather than news accounts about who is winning the war. Don’t be discouraged by politicians and pundits who haven’t been to Iraq: “Don’t hold it against them. The only reason they have that freedom of speech is because you’ll fight for it.”
Editor’s note: Please see this note.
06/13 04:50 PMShare