During my last couple years at Princeton Seminary, I began a tradition of picking up the Sunday edition of the NY Times and chilling/dining alone at a local [all you can eat] Chinese restaurant in Princeton. It was nice to just take my time to read, enjoy good food, read, enjoy more good food, and drink good tea.
That’s a long intro to say that I miss reading the NY times regularly. I still surf the NY Times on the web but it’s a different experience altogether. Anyway…
Did anyone check out the editorial about the Iraq war in yesterday’s edition? I want to be sensitive here. There are many varying opinions about the war; we have numerous war veterans at Quest [through the church merger]; and there are couple families currently who have a parent in Iraq or are prepping to head off in the upcoming year. In an earlier entry, I shared some brief thoughts:
War sucks. Always has and always will. Because of the current national and global climate surrounding the Iraq War, this is obviously a very sensitive issue for many. One thing that is clear to me is that you can question the wisdom and rationale behind the war and the government and still support our country’s troops. This is not an oxymoron…it’s clear that the war is as “unpopular” as it has ever been and yet, we are sending more troops. At this point, that may not necessarily be a bad idea but everyone agrees: this has not turned out anywhere close to what anyone envisioned. While it would be a horrible idea to simply pick up and leave, when will we hear a clear “exit plan” from the current administration? In an article I read online at Sojourners, it contends that 36 cents of every federal income dollar is used for war – to pay for wars past and wars present. If our budget indeed is an example of our “moral document” – what are we saying to ourselves, to our children, and to the rest of the world?
On the local front, we have a family that drives up from Fort Lewis to worship at our church. For the purpose of this blog, I’ll just leave it with some nebulous information. There are several young children in this family. Both Dad and Mom are in the Army. Last year, the family was “forced” to be separated as Dad was sent to Iraq. But alas, he’s set to return in couple months [which is now this month] from his year duty. Kids are excited as they miss their father! The sucky of all sucky news: A month after Dad returns, Mom is now slated to head off to Iraq for about a year. What kinds of @#$& is that?
While support for the war is difficult to find nowadays except on FOX news, I haven’t come across many sharp editorials from major newspapers which is the reason why I was very surprised to read the strong piece entitled, ‘The Road Home’ in this past Sunday’s edition of the NY Times. It calls the US to basically leave Iraq:
It is time for the United States to leave Iraq, without any more delay than the Pentagon needs to organize an orderly exit.
Like many Americans, we have put off that conclusion, waiting for a sign that President Bush was seriously trying to dig the United States out of the disaster he created by invading Iraq without sufficient cause, in the face of global opposition, and without a plan to stabilize the country afterward.
At first, we believed that after destroying Iraq’s government, army, police and economic structures, the United States was obliged to try to accomplish some of the goals Mr. Bush claimed to be pursuing, chiefly building a stable, unified Iraq. When it became clear that the president had neither the vision nor the means to do that, we argued against setting a withdrawal date while there was still some chance to mitigate the chaos that would most likely follow.
While Mr. Bush scorns deadlines, he kept promising breakthroughs — after elections, after a constitution, after sending in thousands more troops. But those milestones came and went without any progress toward a stable, democratic Iraq or a path for withdrawal. It is frighteningly clear that Mr. Bush’s plan is to stay the course as long as he is president and dump the mess on his successor. Whatever his cause was, it is lost. [read full editorial]
Anyone else read this? Thoughts…