Boot’s call for more U.S. troops in Iraq
Re “It’s time to get radical,” Opinion, Aug. 9
I am a retired Air Force lieutenant colonel who served twice in Vietnam, during the troop buildup and the drawdown. The war in Vietnam is similar to the war in Iraq. Max Boot seems to think that more troops will bring an end to the Iraq war. President Johnson thought the same incorrect way. When I went to Vietnam in 1965 we had about 35,000 U.S. troops there and we ended up with about 500,000 and still lost the war.
CHARLES R. MCNAUGHTON
Let’s face it, U.S. prestige has already been deeply wounded in the world community. The Islamic terrorists were encouraged to attack us before the invasion, and whatever the outcome of this horrible situation, they will continue to be encouraged.
We’re damned if we do pull out all troops, leave a huge mess that we created and hand the cleanup over to the Iraqi people, and damned if we don’t because we’ll be viewed as unwanted occupiers by the majority of Iraqis.
Boot reports that unless we radically escalate our troop participation in Iraq we will suffer “the worst American military defeat since Vietnam.” I beg to differ. It is now nearly five years since 9/11, and despite the expenditure of hundreds of billions of dollars and the casualties suffered by thousands of our military people, Osama bin Laden and his people are not only still at large, but still killing Americans as well.
What impending disaster in Iraq could possibly be worse than that?
Instead of being a consistent apologist for the Bush administration’s disastrous Iraq policies, Boot should repeat this mantra three times, preferably in writing: “I was wrong, I am sorry and I will stop being an ivory-tower dwelling, pseudo-intellectual touting a militaristic neocon agenda.”