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America at Large

What You Don't Know Can Hurt You
By Ricky Allen
Jan 31, 2005 - 9:30:00 PM

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Yesterday the world watched as one embattled country took their first baby steps in the world of Democracy.

However, so much blood has been spilled for those steps.

It's hard to believe that for every person that has died in the fight for those casted votes died because they believed something that in the end never was. I'm talking about the "Weapons of Mass Destruction." It was our reason to turn our back on the U.N. and go it alone, it was our reason to dial the call for war, and it was our reason for the casualties. However, as I stated earlier, it was a reason that turned out to be more fiction than fact. So as usual, we look for justification. It went from taking out Saddam and the weapons of mass destruction, to liberating Iraq.

Good job, we got one out of two.

And goodness, what would America think if we hadn't found Saddam? Would Bush had got re-elected? Would the country have to wait yet again for another internationally known criminal to be brought to justice (See Afganistan war; Bin Laden)? It is my belief that what you don't know, yes, it can hurt you. If we had more info on Iraq, better intelligence on the ground, we would have known far ahead of time that war may have been imminent, but not called for at the moment. It would have given us more time to think about how to deal with the insurgents, and how to minimize casualties, and handle the elections.

We did good, but there is always room for improvement. The President has done a good job making up for loss of information though. We did show the world that Iraq could hold elections, and we have shown that whether if you're with us, or not, or just don't agree with anything that's going on, we're going forward. In other words, WE BELIEVED. I think America looked to see some kind of results from the invasion of Iraq,and we're slowly but surely seeing it. It has taken some time, but, it has begun to rise from the war torn sands of its villiages and farms that once fielded land mines. I guess the big question is What now? Are the troops coming home anytime soon? When do we stop holding their hands and let them walk on their own. There's a hard answer to that--I'll have to attribute it to my 1-year-old son: When he felt confident enough to rise on his own two feet, he took his steps alone. When that will happen for Iraq, like a child, only time will tell...and just like children, you can only watch and hope you're there to see it.

FROM THE EMAIL BIN:

I would like to thank those of you that do send your thoughts, and when I do receive them I like to openly respond to them to show that as a writer, I'm open to critique and praise.

David Brown from Texas wrote in response to my latest column "The U.S. and change: The Next Four Years". He said, "Bush's inaugural address he entered America into a contract that is impossible to uphold. Really, no one can tell me we have enough capabilities to end tyranny in the world. We don't have near enough support to much of anything. We can't successfully rebuild Iraq. Right. Who would support a nation that attacks another nation for its own oil and economic reasons. No one supports a nation so it can build its own empire, go figure? And does Mr. Bush really think he can challange Russia and China? Does he think he can threaten them to act more like America? Don't think so. One more thing, America has no right to force itself on anyone else. Believe it or not, not every nation wants to be like the U.S. We can't forget, most of the world doesn't like us. I wonder why? Oh yeah ... GO Pats!

Mr. Brown, let's look at the spectrum of things for a minute. I can understand where you're coming from, however, in my opinion, we're taking the whole "Clear and Present Danger" mentality into a more political arena. I don't think Bush will challenge China or Russia, nor have we forced ourselves on anyone. The only thing that Bush has done is shown these people a better way of life, and like everything, you're going to have your few that disagree. That's what democracy is all about? That's what America's all about, having the right to do such a thing. We're not trying to rebuild Iraq, we're molding it into a force that not only can contibute something to the world other than terrorists breeding grounds. And I don't think we're trying to be the "Super Man" of the world, but when countries are looking for help, the U.S. won't back down. Bush has shown that time and time again. But every now and then Mr. Brown, we do have to think like the lifeguard, "You can't save them all". So I guess I agree on some of your thoughts, and disagree on others, but I do thank you for your opinion.

For everyone else, you know the drill; email me at navjoallen@yahoo.com and leave your name and where you're from, and also the column you're responding to. I welcome all thoughts and walks of life.


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