Tuesday, September 7

West Virginia’s top Army Reserve spokesman says the Iraq war was a mistake, and President Bush should be voted out of office.

The retired colonel said his troops in Iraq wondered “what we were doing there,” and he was forced to change his answer repeatedly. An invasion must have a clear mission and an exit strategy, but “those things didn’t exist” in the Iraq attack, he said.

At first, Tyree said, he trusted Secretary of State Colin Powell’s assertion that Iraq possessed illicit weapons of mass destruction. But that pretext soon faded, and the next reason for the war was “to liberate the Iraqis from tyranny.” Later, he heard that “we were there to gain a foothold in the region,” but he couldn’t tell that reason to his troops, so he “went back to the liberation mission.”

The ex-reservist told Wells that throwing so much military manpower into Iraq has left fewer forces to deal with terrorist threats, “so America is at a greater risk than before.”

He said part-time reservists such as those in his group aren’t trained enough for the chaotic complications of warfare. He added that America’s full-time soldiers and officers in Iraq tend to look down on reservists, and refuse to cooperate with them.

As for the Bush administration, Tyree concluded:

Tyree said he can’t understand veterans who “continue to support a leader who would lead us in this direction with these kinds of miscalculations.”
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“I believe in this country, and I’m concerned about where this country is heading,” he said. “I want to be part of the change, vs. the part that will allow us to continue on the path of destruction.”

He added that he’s doing the same as John Kerry, who fought in the Vietnam War then returned to oppose it.

Hat tip to BuzzFlash.


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