By David Edwards on 1/4/2006, 1:30pm PT  

Guest blogged by David Edwards

In an interview earlier this week on ABC Nightline, John Murtha explained how he came to believe that American forces should be redeployed from Iraq as soon as possible. The congressman made a trip to Iraq where he saw the futility of military operations. Every supply convoy was attacked. The commanders that Murtha met with expressed extreme discouragement at the progress being made in Iraq.

John Murtha believes in the necessity of having and, when necessary, using a strong military. After experiencing the situation in Iraq first hand, Murtha strongly believed that the Iraq war had caused long-term damaged to the Army. He now admits that he made a mistake by voting to grant war powers to the president.

ABC correspondent John Donvan was surprised to hear Murtha say that he wouldn't join today's Military. Murtha left college to fight for his country in the Korean War and went on to fight in the Vietnam war. He knows what he's talking about when he says that he understands why young men and women wouldn't want to join the military today. This is just one way that the Iraq war and the current administration are diluting the integrity of America's national defenses.

One of Donovan's questions prompted an emotional response from Representative Murtha. His voice trembled and he held back tears as he answered.

Donovan: Do you think that in the end that the enthusiasm for going to war that the president had would have been different if, like you, he had actually ever seen combat? Or if Dick Cheney, like you, had ever seen combat? Or Rumsfeld or Wolfowitz or Fieth? Men who wanted to go to war [with Iraq] and had never seen combat. Do you think it would have made a difference if they had had that experience?

Murtha: Let me tell you. War is a nasty business. It's seriously so and it made a difference. The shadow of those killings stay with you for the rest of your life.


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