President Bush unwrapped some late Christmas gifts tonight: 20,000 more troops to fight in Iraq, and a carrier strike force to intimidate Iran. Bush addressed the country tonight and laid out his new plan for expanding the ongoing war in Iraq. Bush called the conflict as the "ideological struggle of our time" and said more troops are needed to secure Baghdad.
His plan to increase the troop total in Iraq comes as a surprise to no one. Bush also spurned most of the Iraq Study Group's recommendations (but managed to invoke the report's name a few times) and wide-spread public opinion against sending more troops. But the biggest news is Bush's plan to broaden the military, increase the number foreign affairs advisers for various "nation building" activities, and a carrier strike force to keep Iran in check. Rather than turn to pragmatism, Bush sounded more imperialistic than ever.
These goals fly in the face of the public opinion which has turned steeply against the war. At this moment each American needs to ask one simple question: do you trust the President's judgment? Would you trust him to fix your plumbing? Do you trust him to navigate the complex and tenuous Middle East? Do you trust your son or daughter's life in his hands? The answer is no. After four years, 400 billion dollars and 3,000 lives, the President cannot ask us to escalate our trust in him while he escalates troops in Iraq. If America is the greatest country on earth we are well within our rights to demand better from our President.