Monday, September 25, 2006

Grief and politics

The Washington Post decided to help the GOP with midterm elections today, by printing this story . It speaks about how Bush feels badly about the soldiers who have died in the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

It's nice if he does get upset when he sees how much grief his orders have caused, but I have to admit, being able to be sad when confronted with someone in mourning doesn't really impress me. What impresses me is the ability to look at the results of your actions, and recognize when you've made a mistake, and learn the lessons of that mistake.

President Bush had intelligence before him that said

1) Iraq might not actually have biological or chemical programs, or a nuclear program
2) Saddam Hussein was not working with al Qaeda, and
3) Invading Iraq might create fertile conditions for a civil war.

Because he ignored that intelligence, because he didn't bother to dig into that intelligence, he launched the war.

And here we are today, with thousands of our best dead in a war that's costing hundreds of billions of dollars.

I'm glad he has agreed to meet some military families, to talk to the people who mourn their losses, and I'm sure it chokes him up. It should. He bought this war; he had the final decision to make, and his decision was to attack. He should feel bad, and he should shoulder a lot of grief.

But if he was a good man, and a strong leader, he wouldn't just shoulder the grief; he would learn from it. And there's no sign that he has done so.

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