SHORT TAKES : Kovic: Bring U.S. Troops Home

FROM TIMES WIRE SERVICES

Ron Kovic, the disabled Vietnam veteran played by Tom Cruise in the movie "Born on the Fourth of July" appealed for President Bush to bring troops home from the Persian Gulf.

Speaking on television from his beach city home, Kovic on Tuesday said he would send his opinions to Bush in a letter.

"I implore the President to begin withdrawing the troops," the former Marine said during a newscast.

Kovic, 43, whose autobiography served as the source for "Fourth of July" said he represented millions of people uneasy about an American military operation in the Middle East.

"This is a growing movement," he said, saying that an opinion shift would occur as soon as American troops suffer casualties.

"Millions of us want peace," he said. "We've had enough of wars. We've had enough of our sons coming home in body bags and wheelchairs. We've had enough of delayed stress syndrome."

Kovic served with the Marines in Vietnam and lost the use of his legs from a combat wound. He returned to America and eventually became an anti-war activist.

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