John Kinkaid: We deserve leadership
November 13, 2009
To the editor:
Dear Mr. President,
You are a disgrace to the office of the president of the United States. You disgrace the office at multiple levels. I shall discuss only one today.
You received a recommendation from your commander in the field — Gen. Stanley McChrystal — regarding troop strength to best assure victory in Afghanistan. You have just concluded your eighth meeting on the subject with your war cabinet and have delayed your decision on troop levels for at least the past two months.
I would not want my sons or daughter put in harm's way on a whim or an ill thought out decision process. I appreciate that. Being responsible for the death of troops and writing letters home to their parents is not something that I would want to have to do.
That said, you are not the president for the times in which we live.
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We have just experienced the first post 9/11 terrorist attack on U.S. soil. You announced the attack in the middle of a scheduled speech at a B.I.A. function, in which you gave a "shout out" to a Native American, who won the Presidential Medal of Freedom.
You called it the Congressional Medal of Honor, but I digress. You should have just cancelled that speech and announced the attack.
Being light and glib was not appropriate.
For months, general McChrystal has asked for an additional 40,000 troops. Now you are considering a so-called "hybrid" decision to send 30,000 troops. What's the matter with you? McChrystal's request for 40,000 additional troops was the bare minimum.
Define victory and what it looks like. Explain it to us. Either you are going to commit to achieve it or not.
Either commit to victory, or bring our brave men and women home. We are either in Afghanistan to assure victory or we are there to repeat Vietnam. The United States is a noble country, and we can achieve noble goals. We deserve noble leadership.