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Does America Have The Stomach For War Anymore? April 24, 2007

Posted by fitsnews in US Politics.

iwo jima flag raising small


FITSNews – April 24, 2007 – We were sitting at Old Ebbitt Grill in Washington, D.C. with a powerful U.S. Attorney a few weeks ago when he made a comment that has stuck in our heads ever since.

“America doesn’t have what it takes to fight wars these days,” he told us. “Our soldiers still do, but our people, our press and our politicians don’t have the stomach for it anymore.”

Is he right? Can the United States still function as a military power in an age of non-existent American nationalism, rampant cynicism and political correctness, instantaneous (and usually agenda-driven) blood and guts “reporting” and the over-politicization of military decision-making? Or has victory in the largely bloodless Cold War and the lack of a clearly defined enemy in the War on Terror weakened the fundamental fighting spirit of the American people?

Consider this: From February 19 – March 16, 1945, 6,825 American soldiers were killed in action while taking the Japanese island of Iwo Jima. Another 1,401 American soldiers died from wounds sustained during that month-long battle. Now compare those figures with the roughly 3,500 American soldiers who have been killed in just over four years of fighting in Iraq.

Think about it, when the famous James Rosenthal photo of six soldiers raising the American flag over Iwo Jima was published in American newspapers four years into World War II, it raised a record $26 billion in war bonds. Four years into the current war, Congress is attempting to use a combat funding resolution to force a troop withdrawal out of Iraq.

Truth be told, we have serious misgivings about America’s continued presence in Iraq. In fact, we’re not entirely sure that America should have included within its military objectives for the campaign anything beyond kicking Saddam Hussein out of power and crippling Iraq’s ability to wage war against its neighbors.

But we also have serious misgivings about America being viewed by the world as a paper tiger – a bumbling, disaffected giant scared of its own shadow and incapable of sustaining the fortitude needed to defeat those who seek to do it lasting harm.

The terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001 were no less an affront to the American way of life than the attack on Pearl Harbor. In fact, in terms of geographic and cultural proximity, they were even worse.

But five years later, have we proven to the world that we are still willing to “bear any burden?” Or has our rage been misdirected and our resources mismanaged in standing up to this latest clear and present danger?



1. Silence Dogood - April 24, 2007

It may be hard to do comparisons. After all, this conflict has already lasted longer than almost any other major military conflict in the history of our nation. Secondly, in the age of fear mongering (read terrorism) it is hard to make the enemies as tangible. Terrorism is a tactic, NOT a group of people. After Pearl Harbor, it was hard to deny we had a tangible and easily defineable enemy. The overwhelming majority of attackers on Sept. 11th were from Saudi Arabia. Iraq’s involvement in 9-11 was non-existent, but quite arguably without Sept. 11th there would never have been enough national sentiment to go into Iraq. The fear and suspicion generated by 9-11 was harnassed to invade Iraq when quite arguable, WMD’s or no WMD’s we could have just bombed the sites in Iraq that we felt were a threat the way the Israeli’s did in the 1980’s – but don’t forget again, and once more Iraq had nothing to do with Sept. 11th. Getting into Iraq or not, whether one agrees with it or not, was a spin campaign designed to capatilize on post 9-11 sentiment. All our reasons for going to war in Iraq have melted away and hence our resolve to stay there. The confliction of the American people is in large part it that we have completely wrecked the damn place based wholey on our own feelings of insecurity – and quite naturally now we feel we owe them something, but God knows what that is because we sure as hell can give them security or stability. We have tried to unsuccessfully to grant them the one thing they probably don’t need which is representative democracy by demanding they accept. “You are free to choose any form of government you wish. . .as long as it is also one we wish. . .and if you elect the wrong people we start over. . .fair enough. . .well, it doesn’t really matter if you agree.” This is horrendously laughable and pitiful at the same time.

In a war where it is now painfully apparent the only exit plan the President ever saw was his departure from office, it is not too difficult to see why people seem a tad disillusioned.

If I had something I wanted to people to go along with and my reasons kept melting away, I lilke the U.S. Attorney in this piece would start crying “chicken” also to see if I could get people not to leave my side.

2. Earl - April 24, 2007


3. wallace - April 24, 2007

Our soldiers can win this war. Our political class can not.

Please, for God’s sake, bring our men and women home. Bring them home now. Yesterday 9 of our finest died…and for what?

Bring them home now…in 30 days. not 9 months, not 15 months…now.

A Life long conserative and right wing evangical…

4. wallace - April 24, 2007


sorry bout that.

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