Ross Mackenzie

So what is it about this Congress?

You mean any Congress - at least any recent one.

OK, so what is it?

The woman in the checkout line the other day termed it - about this Congress - "sniveling cowardice." The congressional battle over Iraq recalled for her nothing quite so much as the late days of the American involvement in Vietnam. When Congress cut off funding for the U.S. enterprise in Vietnam, there was nothing to do but cut and run.

Still, just like now, Congress supported the troops.

No, it didn't. In pulling the plug on funding the war, it sabotaged the troops - the entire U.S. effort. The game was up. We had no choice but to tuck tail and get out as fast as we could.

Well, I support the troops. I just don't support what they're doing - killing women and children, torturing prisoners like at Abu Ghraib, supporting an incompetent government and getting between the warring factions in a civil war. All of that is none of our business.

It's syllogistically impossible to support the troops and oppose the mission they're trying to carry out. It's a pseudo construct fashioned by peaceniks in politics and the press. In opposing U.S. involvement, they don't want to be seen as undermining morale or denying the troops the materiel they need. It's so intellectually, you know, inconvenient.

You have to admit that those in Congress are good people, conscientious people. . .

They're weathervane politicians blowin' in the wind. And as supercilious, sanctimonious pols such as John Kerry say, those in the military are dumb, useful fools who - if they had even a semblance of a brain or an education, if they had any sense at all and hadn't screwed up in high school - wouldn't be in the military and certainly wouldn't be in Iraq.

But Bush is an illegitimate president, and he lied about the reasons for going into Iraq - WMDs and expanding the realm of democracy. What kind of nonsense was that? I don't have an argument with the jihadists -

They have one with you - bigtime. And they want your head on a stick.

What about the polls? Most Americans don't think we should be in Iraq. This is a democracy and the politicians are just expressing the public will. Why not admit we were wrong, cut our losses and end it now?

Ross Mackenzie

Ross Mackenzie lives with his wife and Labrador retriever in the woods west of Richmond, Virginia. They have two grown sons, both Naval officers.

Be the first to read Ross Mackenzie's column. Sign up today and receive delivered each morning to your inbox.