To Be Worthy of Remembrance

Not everyone lost their minds, you know.

It's tempting to talk about it that way now, isn't it? Especially if you favored the war, or at least, didn't oppose it. It's tempting to talk about it as if everybody in the world agreed that "we" needed to do something to "them" and this was the answer "we" all agreed upon. 

It's tempting because it absolves those who were wrong of the failure to listen to those who were right. It's tempting because it lets us all off the hook, for not doing more to stop it. No matter what we did, it wasn't enough, because we didn't stop it. 

But oh, God, we tried, didn't we? We wrote and we called and we marched in the streets, and if "we" attacked Iraq then "we" are at least going to give ourselves the credit of remembering that "we" were never "we" at all, never even once. We attacked Iraq, and we tried to stop it, and not everybody lost their minds. 

Some of us fought back: 

Had I been a member of the Senate, I would have voted against the resolution that authorized the President to use unilateral force against Iraq – unlike others in that body now seeking the presidency.

I do not believe the President should have been given a green light to drive our nation into conflict without the case having first been made to Congress and the American people for why this war is necessary, and without a requirement that we at least try first to work through the United Nations.

That the President was given open-ended authority to go to war in Iraq resulted from a failure of too many in my party in Washington who were worried about political positioning for the presidential election.

To this day, the President has not made a case that war against Iraq, now, is necessary to defend American territory, our citizens, our allies, or our essential interests.

Some of us fought back: 

Saying there are weapons of mass destruction in Iraq doesn't make it so. Saying we can fight a war on the cheap doesn't make it so. And proclaiming "Mission accomplished" certainly doesn't make it so.

Some of us fought back: 

“I think there always are things you can see in retrospect that you’d want to do better,” he said. “[No one] aside from those of us who’ve stayed in the streets against these wars can say truthfully I told you so.”

Watching the events in Iraq this week, watching something completely inevitable happen exactly the way it was always going to happen, all I could think was that the people who had tried to stop it saw this coming, now we talk about them as if they didn't exist.


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