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The Time Has Come To Say We Must Leave Iraq

excerpts from a column by Army Maj. William E. Bailey (retired). August 15, 2005

Many Americans assumed the president had information he wasn’t sharing to incur the invasion. The president, vice president and others in the administration said for months that Iraq was continuing its nuclear program. The U.N. inspection teams found no such evidence. The secretary of state went to the United Nations to describe the seriousness of the situation, using fraudulent intelligence. Finally the truth came out. The information we had about weapons of mass destruction in Iraq was exaggerated or falsified.

We cannot deliver democracy to the Iraqi people; they must choose it and then defend it themselves. Democracy is not a gift, to be given like a Christmas present. It has to be earned through the blood and sweat of patriots.

Iraq belongs to the Iraqis. As long as the U.S. is present, we will be seen as invaders and targets. The number of U.S. servicemembers killed continues to rise to nearly 2,000; the number of seriously wounded has long since passed 25,000. The number of dead and wounded Iraqis may never be known, but a conservative estimate would put the carnage at over 100,000. The invasion has created not only a locus of terrorist activity by presenting a proximity target, but has also created a whole new generation of suicide bombers.

The longer we stay, the harder it will be to leave because of the resources wasted on this sad desert land. The longer we stay, the more hated we will become. It is time for us to go.

Does this mean the terrorists have won? No, it means Iraq must determine its own way. The departure of the U.S. will then give our armed forces the breathing room necessary to fight the war on terror, and seek out the al-Qaida members still hiding in Pakistan or Afghanistan. It’s time for us to go.

You have been reading "U.S. should leave Iraq" by Army Maj. William E. Bailey (retired). You can see it in its original context here: tinyurl.com/cbc5a. Thanks to estripes.com.

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