Deb Meyer of South Bend, Ind., was standing next to Ellsworth and holding a picture of her son Jason, who was killed April 8, 2003, in Iraq. She said that another son has enlisted in the Army and that a third son plans to enlist when he graduates from high school.
“It really irks me when I hear people describe us as pro-war,” she said, “just because the other side is antiwar. I am not pro-war. I don’t think the president is pro-war. I don’t think any of the soldiers fighting are pro-war. They have a mission, and they are going to do it.”
No disrespect intended to this lost one son in Iraq and is apparently ready to send the other two, but does this sound like trying to have it both ways to anyone but me? How exactly can you support the war in Iraq and not be pro-war. Isn’t supporting a war the very definition of being pro-war?
The movie queen in me wants to borrow a line from Whatever Happened to Baby Jane here: “But ya are pro-war, Blanche! Ya are!” You can’t have your cake — or, to extend the joke here, dead rat — and eat it too.
It seems to me that if you were for going to war in Iraq during the build-up, and you support continuing the war in Iraq, then you’re clearly pro-war. And the argument about war being a “necessary evil” doesn’t fly in this case, because the war in Iraq was never necessary. You might be able to make a case for the necessity of going to war in self-defense, but in the case of Iraq there was nothing to defend against in Iraq. It was clear from the beginning that the counterfeit “intelligence” suggesting there was a threat was half-baked and then stovepiped to officials in the Bush administration who were salivating for any reason to launch their pre-planned war against Iraq. (Even Powell now calls it a blot on his record.)
Some of us knew it was bogus before the first bomb dropped on Baghdad. And some of us spoke out against it then. Some of us did what we could to stop it then; before Casey Sheehan died; before Deb Meyer’s son, Jason, died; before 1900+ other American mothers’ children died along with countless other Iraqi mothers’ children.
Granted, given the daily reports of gore and death in Iraq, I can understand the dance of distancing oneself from the inevitable results of the war you wanted. But that doesn’t make it any less dishonest.
So, to the “not-pro-war-but-pro-”staying-the-course“ crowed, at least be honest with yourselves if not the rest of us. You wanted a war. You asked for a war. You got a war. Own it.