Iraq Vets and Military Families Speak Out on Bush's Speech Tonight
"As a veteran of this war, I cannot overstate how much this escalation will betray our men and women in uniform by sending them on a mission to secure Iraq that can't be achieved with force alone. Escalation in Iraq will not kill Osama bin Laden, won't secure Iraq long term, and will not make us safer here at home. The only thing it is guaranteed to do is bring about an increase in American deaths for no reason."
-Jon Soltz, Co-Founder and Chairman of VoteVets.org and the only Iraq war veteran invited to speak at a Senate Leadership press conference on the President's proposed escalation of the war in Iraq
"As politicians in Washington, DC, including President Bush, scramble for ways to extract themselves from the political fallout of the war in Iraq, they are doing the unconscionable: gambling in a no-win situation with the lives of our loved ones and the loved ones of others. It is incumbent upon Congress to now use their power of the purse to stop funding for continuing the U.S. military occupation of Iraq and use the funds necessary to bring our troops home quickly and safely."
-Nancy Lessin, a co-founder of Military Families Speak Out
"De-funding the war is not, as Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, Majority Leader Steny Hoyer and others have suggested, 'abandoning the troops' or 'decreasing financing for American troops'; it is the most supportive thing that Congress can do. If they fail to act to support our troops in this way, and vote for funds to be used to continue the war, then this will no longer be George Bush's war - it will be the Democrats' war. If they buy it again, they will own it."
-Charley Richardson, co-founder of Military Families Speak Out
"Going through my son's first deployment to Iraq - to a war that should never have happened - was the hardest thing I've ever experienced, and he is still irreparably scarred. Now there's talk that he may have to go back as part of Bush's troop 'surge', and for what? There are no new troops for this so-called 'surge' - it'll be the back-door draft all over again. Troops currently in Iraq, due to come home, will be extended, and those who have already been through so much will be re-deployed."
-Tina Smarro of Cohoes, NY whose son is in the Army