I watched Congressman John Murtha talk for a bit last night. He's the person that
Congresswoman Mean Jean Schmidt called a coward because he says his vote to go to war in Iraq was wrong. He served 37 years in the Marine Corp, fought in two wars, and was given the Bronze Star for valor. Yep! Sounds like a coward to me.
(Jean Schmidt, meanwhile, served on the agriculture committe for her county and was being investigated for ethics violations)
John Murtha is an imposing man. He stood in front of reporters and talked about visiting wounded American troops in the hospital...about a soldier lying in bed trying to learn to put on three plastic limbs with the one arm he had left. He talked about visiting a soldier who was parylized from the neck down...the boy's family was beside him and they were all crying because of what the future held for them. John Murtha did something Jean Schmidt has not done...He asked the boy's family if there was anything he could do?
"Get him a Purple Heart" the boy's mother said.
"He was wounded by friendly fire...they won't give him a Purple Heart because it was his own people that did this to him."
Murtha went to the Commandant and told him, "Can't you get that soldier his Purple Heart? If you don't do it, I'll give him one of mine!"
In addition to his Bronze Star for valor, John Murtha was awarded two Purple Hearts for being wounded in action. He is a very brave man...And, he was standing up proudly in front of those reporters doing a very brave thing...Admitting he was wrong about voting for the Iraq war. He went through a list of mistakes and documented incompetencies by the Bush administration in the conduct of the war and gave a reasonable plan for getting us out over a period of six months.
"Our presence in Iraq is the cause for the terrorism" he said. Virtually every other analyst has said the same thing. "We have to leave" he said. "We have no clear mission."
Murtha said that with a straight face. When he was talking about his visit with the wounded soldiers, he was sniffing back tears.
With his vote, Murtha knows that he helped send those soldiers to Iraq, some to die, some to return in pieces. Rather than hide behind pomposity and refusal, he stood up in front of reporters and said he was wrong and that it is time to rectify that mistake.
For me personally, here is the bottom line: "We have no clear mission."
Every minute we remain in Iraq, we are asking American troops to face being wounded or being killed. Ask yourself this question:
"Would I sacrifice my own child's life to this cause?"