A Marine's Father

A reader writes:

You say that Rumsfeld must be confronted and ousted "after the election." I know that you're being realistic, because nobody will be politically able to step up and do anything so drastic before the election - even though it would be the right and moral thing to do.

But as the father of a U.S. Marine, I think I speak for many military families when I say how scared and angry I feel, every hour of every waking day, knowing that my son could be killed or maimed because of the stubborn pride - and as a minister I would also characterize it as sinful pride - of a few men who value their power over the lives of these remarkable young troops.

These power-mongers have clearly placed power politics way above their concern for the welfare of our brave troops. It's a sickening thing to behold and deal with if it's your kid's life on the line.

Some would say, and many in fact have said to me, "Well, your son was 21 when he joined the Marine Corps - plenty old enough to have made the decision for himself, knowing he could be killed or hurt."

I ask, if it were your son, would you not be disgusted by your son being used as a political pawn? It's one thing to have your son and the troops genuinely supported by those who send them into harm's way, not to mention supported by the public; it's another thing to have his life laid on the line by a bunch of cynics who have a war that they either don't know what to do with or the will to change course.

I, like the parents of all our brave troops, am one extremely proud papa. But I can't tell you how extremely sick I am of Rumsfeld, Bush and Cheney, whom I've taken to calling the Three Stooges.