Steve Russell: The third time is not the charm for the war in Iraq

Steve Russell

Steve Russell isn't happy about continued U.S. military action in Iraq:
In my clearest memory of Iraq War I, I was in a graduate school dorm at the University of Nevada, where the rooms had no televisions. Just about every student I knew in Reno was gathered in the lounge down the hall for most of the night around a communal TV. Ten p.m. in Reno was 8 a.m. in Baghdad and the son of one of my fellow students was commanding a flight in an early wave of the air war.

In my clearest memory of Iraq War II, I was chatting on line with my son in a FOB north of Baghdad, when the light fixture behind him started gyrating and the screen shook.

“What’s going on, Paul?”

“Mortar attack.”

“Don’t you need to take cover?

“It’ll be over before I can get to the shelter. They don’t stay around long enough to fire very many…see, they quit.”

My stake in Iraq War III will be less personal, but I’d still just as soon see nobody’s child in harm’s way, American or Iraqi. I’d rather skip part III of this tragedy.

Still, it’s hard to watch the non-combatants on the slopes of Mount Sinjar lacking food and water. We have the ability to drop food and water, but the aircraft that do it come in heavy and slow and they will draw fire. Maybe it is personal that I did my hitch in the Air Force and I believe enough US airmen would volunteer for that mission. Still, fighter cover seems to me prudent.

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Steve Russell: The Third Time Is Not the Charm (Indian Country Today 8/15)

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