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Isn’t Enough Lipstick In All The World…


Dear President Bush:

Yeah, I know it has been a while since my last letter.  I’ve been pretty pissed at you lately, and my momma taught me not to be rude in correspondence or when addressing public figures out of respect, so I decided not writing would be the best move.  Unfortunately, your momma must have skipped the whole taking responsibility for your actions and owning up to your failures instead of blaming others part of your character education, so I thought I’d drop you a note and let you know that I read about your fundraising speech in Alabama.

You do realize that there isn’t enough lipstick in all the world to make your pig of a policy in Iraq look good, don’t you?

I mean, I know it’s an off-year election and all — and you are worried about the GOP losing control of both houses of Congress as a referendum from the public on your continued mismanagement of the mess in Iraq — but that is no reason to repeatedly lie.  Why not address the criticisms head on instead of constantly inventing faux straw men?

Look, out in the real world, we’ve been hearing that your advisors don’t tell you the whole truth about things — that they only tell you what they think you want to hear.  I’m sure a cowboy like you, sir, really wants some truth, so I’m sending some along:

Ministers in the UK are arguing that British troops ought to be pulled out of Iraq and sent to Afghanistan under NATO control instead — because the Afghan conflict is winnable, and Iraq is not.  Were you aware of this debate, because I haven’t heard you talk about it at all.

— Bob Woodward says you have been repeatedly lying to the American public, that your cabinet is full of people who can’t stand the sight of each other and cannot effectively work together — and that your Administration is refusing to give our troops what they have requested.

The White House ignored an urgent warning in September 2003 from a top Iraq adviser who said that thousands of additional American troops were desperately needed to quell the insurgency there, according to a new book by Bob Woodward, the Washington Post reporter and author. The book describes a White House riven by dysfunction and division over the war….

Secretary of Defense Donald H. Rumsfeld is described as disengaged from the nuts-and-bolts of occupying and reconstructing Iraq — a task that was initially supposed to be under the direction of the Pentagon — and so hostile toward Condoleezza Rice, then the national security adviser, that President Bush had to tell him to return her phone calls. The American commander for the Middle East, Gen. John P. Abizaid, is reported to have told visitors to his headquarters in Qatar in the fall of 2005 that “Rumsfeld doesn’t have any credibility anymore” to make a public case for the American strategy for victory in Iraq….

Robert D. Blackwill, then the top Iraq adviser on the National Security Council, is said to have issued his warning about the need for more troops in a lengthy memorandum sent to Ms. Rice. The book says Mr. Blackwill’s memorandum concluded that more ground troops, perhaps as many as 40,000, were desperately needed.

It says that Mr. Blackwill and L. Paul Bremer III, then the top American official in Iraq, later briefed Ms. Rice and Stephen J. Hadley, her deputy, about the pressing need for more troops during a secure teleconference from Iraq. It says the White House did nothing in response….

Vice President Cheney is described as a man so determined to find proof that his claim about weapons of mass destruction in Iraq was accurate that, in the summer of 2003, his aides were calling the chief weapons inspector, David Kay, with specific satellite coordinates as the sites of possible caches. None resulted in any finds.

Gee, I guess Woody won’t be on the cocktail weenie Christmas party list this year at Casa Cheney, eh?

— Our partners in democracy in Iraq have now instituted a "no criticizing the government" law and are arresting journalists who do so.  Heckuva job, Bushie.  (Ooops, sorry sir, that sarcasm just slipped right out there…)

— We lost a 52-year old reservist in Afghanistan.  I know that’s not Iraq, but you should probably know that things aren’t so great there, either.  Just FYI.

— What’s with holding back the bad news all the time?  Are you too chicken to allow Congress to see how bad things truly are — because for you it’s all about politics and not nearly enough about protecting the lives of our men and women in uniform by changing course if need be to something better?  (Ooops, I guess that was a little snarky, too, wasn’t it?  This not being too pissed thing is hard work.  You know all about that sir, don’t you?)

— Oh, and just in case you missed it, some of our nation’s retired military brass think you are doing a craptastic job in Iraq.  You know, all those people with real world, battlefield experience that Rummy told to either STFU or get out and leave the work to his yes men?

Look, sir, the bottom line is this:  your tactics aren’t working very well.  You need to be honest with yourself, as well as with the rest of us in America.  But because your ego and your constant need to be publicly campaigning instead of doing your job seemingly won’t allow you to be honest with yourself or with the rest of us, we’re going to work our butts off to elect some Democrats this Fall who will provide some much-needed oversight and demand accountability from your Administration.  Heaven knows the rubber stamp Republicans haven’t done so the last five plus years.

We need honest oversight and accountability, and we need it now.  The lives of our American soldiers and the safety of our nation deserve nothing less.

Yours in patriotism,  Christy

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Christy Hardin Smith

Christy Hardin Smith

Christy is a "recovering" attorney, who earned her undergraduate degree at Smith College, in American Studies and Government, concentrating in American Foreign Policy. She then went on to graduate studies at the University of Pennsylvania in the field of political science and international relations/security studies, before attending law school at the College of Law at West Virginia University, where she was Associate Editor of the Law Review. Christy was a partner in her own firm for several years, where she practiced in a number of areas including criminal defense, child abuse and neglect representation, domestic law, civil litigation, and she was an attorney for a small municipality, before switching hats to become a state prosecutor. Christy has extensive trial experience, and has worked for years both in and out of the court system to improve the lives of at risk children.

Email: reddhedd AT firedoglake DOT com