It is time to play the apology game.
First you say something truthful then somebody figures you ought to apologize because it might be somehow construed as unpatriotic.
Obama had to apologize when he told a crowd in Iowa:
“We now have spent $400 billion and have seen over 3,000 lives of the bravest young Americans wasted.”
Somebody felt it would be hurtful to each of those soldier’s families to say that their lives had been lost for no particular good reason. Better to repeat the lie than deal with reality.
So Obama apologized.
And now Senator John McCain, another real war hero, has been caught saying the same thing.
On the David Letterman Show, Senator McCain said:
“We’ve wasted a lot of our most precious treasure, which is American lives.”
So McCain apologized.
Shame on McCain and Obama for apologizing!
America has not been made safer due to our invasion of Iraq! Al Quaeda isn’t running for cover because Americans have died. Americans haven’t unearthed Weapons of Mass Destruction that Saddam was aiming at us. The Taliban isn’t on the run. And just saying that Americans died for a reason doesn’t make it so.
It does not demean Americans who have died to say that their lives were wasted. It demeans them and all of us to continue a lie because we do not have the courage to face the truth.
The death of Americans in unnecessary wars is not made more meaningful by playing games of rhetoric. The mothers and fathers of soldiers who have lost their loved ones are not made whole by continuing a lie. If their lives have been lost and that loss brings us to realize our mistakes then their lives will not have been in vain.
But if we fail to realize the real waste of a generation of young and brave and patriotic Americans, then we shall have failed those very same young people. If we hide under illusions of rhetoric and the comfort of denial, we haven’t helped anyone anywhere.
As Senator Kerry himself once famously said, ‘How do you ask a man to be the last man to die for a mistake?’ In other words, how do we sit by and do nothing when American lives are being wasted? When we can’t even say it?