Friday, March 19, 2004

Take Heart

Peggy of A Moveable Beast - a blogger whom I read often, and respect, had this to say about the 1-year anniversary of the beginning of the Iraq war:


"Unfortunately, 575 Americans, hundreds of coalition troops and thousands of Iraqis will not be celebrating any more birthdays. God rest their souls...

The important thing, though, is the new and deep sense of security we feel here at home and that the Iraqi people, missionaries, and relief workers now feel, (the ones who aren't being blown to pieces or shot dead in cold blood, that is).

I know I feel safer now. Thank you so much, Mr. President, but you'll excuse me now, since I must go click here to urge Congress to censure you for misleading us (and the world) about Iraq's weapons of mass destruction, in order to wage your pre-ordained war."
(Note: there are some reference links included in the original post, visit her site to access them)

I replied in her Comments, but I'd like to include my reply here:


Peggy, I'm sorry you don't feel safer, and I join your sympathy with those lives that were lost, but I'd like to offer with all humility, a couple of points to ponder:

1) Every year of Saddam's reign, thousands of Iraqi's were killed for resisting his or his regime's edicts and whims. In his 30+ years of power, over 300,000 Iraqis are believed to have been killed. While the resistance is regrettable, in this first year of freedom the # of Iraqis killed has dropped from 10,000 (avg) to about 1/4 of that. And assuming the Coalition military assistance remains consistent in the coming months, by this time next year hopefully that number will have dropped even more drastically.

If a program were introduced to reduce the # of US highway deaths by 75% in the first year of operation, it would be called a major success. And by another - who knows? - 75% in year 2, it would be called a phenomenal success.

Of course, that's small condolence to the families of those Iraqi's killed in the past 12 months, but take heart in the fact that the families of 3 or 4 times as many Iraqi's are now not having to go through that pain themselves.

And this was brought about by US and Coalition servicemen who were willing to give their own lives that others may live. Their sacrifeces were not vain, or empty ones.

Fear and despair were replaced with hope and freedom. The cost was great, but the rewards are greater.

2) Perhaps you don't feel safer 2-1/2 years after 9/11. The point to remember is - whether you believe it or not - you are safer. You are still alive, as are millions of your fellow Americans. If the US had not pursued the courses of action they did, I have no doubt in my mind that we would be mourning the losses of thousands, if not millions more dead today in the US. You may not feel safer, but the fact that it's worked through this point is empirical evidence that you were.

There's every reason to believe we may be hit tomorrow, and hit hard - I accept that. But that fact that we weren't hit last week or yesterday convinces me that nothing succeeds like success. Take heart :)

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