Tuesday, February 01, 2005

Better than hoped

I want to say thank you to our soldiers for doing a tremendous job of securing polling places in Iraq so that the people of that nation could finally vote for the first time in over 50 years (and when you consider Middle Eastern history, it was really almost a first vote ever for them). I suppose George Bush, to some degree, deserves credit for this day, despite the fact that security would have been made much easier had he secured the place right two years ago, but no matter. The elections came off, far better than anyone's optimistic (or pessimistic) observations.

So, now what? I think there is some merit to looking at a timetable for leaving. It doesn't hurt to put out some ideas, at least, on when we think we'll be able to leave. Soldiers were helping get people to the polls by telling them, among other things, that the U.S. will leave if you vote. That will raise expectations, and by the end of 2005, we will be expected to be gone.

Also, Bush campaigned on the war on terror, guaranteeing that we'd be hit again by the terrorists. So, what is he doing? Going after Social Security. Why ignore our biggest worry, George? Why aren't you tackling the issue you really ran on? The President needs to be tackling the terror issue. Iraq, I think, is turning the corner to settling down, and think what you want of John Kerry, he made some valid points about our security. If we do not tighten up our security, and get attacked via one of the weak spots he mentioned in the campaign, it will be in part because this adminstration has not focused fully enough on the problem at hand.

To them, terrorism has become a way of selling Iraq, or winning election, but by God, what is the shape of our security? Too many police and fire departments have had to lay off, with NYC's being in some godawful shape. Where I live, outside of Detroit, Detroit's fire department has been understaffed and underfunded for years. What if we are the next target? I doubt the brave men and women in Detroit will be ready enough because the city is drowning in red ink, like many cities across the nation.

So, while there has been some bright light for us on the horizon, and some newfound hope, we still have a lot of work to do. I'll be watching the State of the Union quite closely to see what the president suggests in terms of national security. I suppose you all do too. Moreover, if you don't like what you see, write, call, email, and generally bug the living hell out of Congress to do better. In the end, they have the budgetary authority, and can get things done.


Blogger Puma said...

Ugh. Don't even get me started on GWB.

6:01 PM  

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