It’s hard to sit on the sidelines anymore in a community where people seem to relish division of loyalty disguised as diversity rather than unity of purpose through differing strengths and ideas. That’s not how America was forged, it’s not how we have functioned in the past, nor how we will survive our current real threat from Islamo-facism as a nation.
The editor of this paper chose wording to link one army officer’s defiance of an order with the so-called support of an entire community, based on the location of his talk. Well, I live in Coupeville and I certainly do not support nor agree with a man who first takes an oath to obey his president, takes the pay which goes along with the commission, then uses his position to disobey his oath and bring disgraceful attention to himself. That’s pathetic in my book, not noble. Many people I spoke with from this small community were outraged by his behavior, not supportive. I hope, for the sake of our nation, he ends up in Leavenworth for a long time. Can you imagine having to follow an officer whose word means absolutely nothing? And onto the subject of the current war in Iraq and its genesis: Every liberal politician claimed Saddam Hussein had and intended to use weapons of mass destruction. Every single one. These claims went back to the first Gulf War and included Kerry, the Clintons and others. When things became tough in Iraq, one by one these same people have lined up to claim they never supported this war, etc. I see no difference between them, Watada and Jane Fonda. All are Americans, all have their passions, all have decided that the war is unpopular and all are now using their energies to ensure our own defeat.
For one minute, assume that it is Dec. 11 of 1776 and we are engaged in a life and death struggle with England and the future of our own existence and freedom as the fledgling United States. The location is Pennsylvania, and the troops are demoralized by both the looming prospect of defeat and the bitter winter itself. Now to this unbelievable hardship, add scenes of your own fellow countrymen and women calling for your surrender and defeat, calling for the resignation of the Commander and Chief of the Continental Army, the Continental Congress giving him a vote of non-binding resolutions, and local colonists embracing as a hero an officer who refused to obey his orders.
Listen, whether one agrees with a president or not, once elected he must be supported during wartime or we all lose. Since President Bush won the election of 2000, from the vandalism of the White House and Air Force One, the left has not rested in trying everything imaginable to humiliate him, cut off his ability to protect us and blame him for everything from prosecuting terrorists to Hurricane Katrina. The handful of ladies of Coupeville who persist in standing on the corner with their anti-war signs and the desecrated flag or lying about not eating any more food until the troops come home — were all hypocritically absent during President Clinton’s eight years and so-called invasion of Bosnia, bombing of the factory in Sudan and missile attack on Afghanistan.
I wasn’t absent. I was there. I served this country during that time with many others, for a president I absolutely did not agree with. But that’s what citizenship is: pulling together for the common good, not pulling down for selfish ambition and attention. Now more than ever is the time for victory, not defeat. Now is the time to be an American first, and set aside our partisan politics to complete the mission. Starting here in Coupeville. We are at war with a real enemy who lives and dies to kill us. Some of you are aiding this enemy. Now’s a great time to stop. For everyone’s sake. As Thomas Paine wrote, America shall make a stand, not for herself alone, but for the world.
Clay Miller, LCDR, USN (Ret), lives in Coupeville.