Friday, October 08, 2004

Mail Call

Today is the first installment of Mail Call. As I get the electronic letter opener out and put on my pretend reading glasses I peer into the curiously empty mailbag. I can count on one finger the number of posts that request an answer. This shouldn't take very long. First though, I would like to make a request. I see the counter on the right of the screen going up so people must be reading this page but, I'm not feeling the love. My request is if you read this post please leave a comment. You don't have to say anything but hi. Just click on the comments thing at the bottom and post the word hi. That'll give me an idea of how many people are actually reading this. I'm starting to think it's just my Mom and Dad getting on about a hundred times a day. It would just sort of let me feel connected to you guys a little better.

The question asked was whether or not I saw the first presidential debates and what I thought. I'll answer this from the point of view of how this effects me as a soldier.

Please read my disclaimer to the right. This post is only my opinion. I'm not extremely well versed in politics and would probably lose most political arguments. However, I've done some research and here are my feelings. Feel free to agree or disagree. Just make sure you vote to validate any opinions you might have.

I did see the debates and was a little surprised. I thought Bush was going to come out as the clear cut unquestioned winner. John Kerry surprised me though. He was clear and concise and seemed to leave president Bush stammering a few times. John Kerry said a number of times that he had a four part plan to win the peace in Iraq and then start to withdraw the troops. He referred to his plan a number of times but didn't line out the details. I went to and read his plan. He plans to expand the number of troops we have, Increase the number of special forces, modernize the military equipment, and strengthen the National Guard to increase homeland security. The things he doesn't say are how he's going to do these things. How is he going to get 40,000 more troops to volunteer to join the Army? I could come up with that as one of my points in a presidential campaign but I couldn't back it up. I don't think Kerry can either. He also talks of modernizing the military to be able to fight this new kind of enemy. He faults the president for not having us trained now to fight them. My argument is that no matter who the president was when we fought Iraq it would have been the same. We have always been successful fighting the way we fight so why would we have changed. John Kerry just has the advantage of hind sight and not being the president responsible for Iraq to fall on. I don't really see how John Kerry will do the idealistic things he is offering.

This war was started by President Bush and should be finished by President Bush, or at least his plan. I think the conflict in Iraq will last longer than President Bush. Having been in the Army under Bill Clinton and now again under President Bush I have seen a transformation. The Army is much more fluid and capable of change now than it was the first time I was in. I think the Army will totally change it's fighting methods in the next few years no matter who is the Commander and Chief. Kerry claiming he wants to transform the military is a self fulfilling prophesy. It's going to happen anyway out of necessity. The fear I have is that we withdraw troops too early from Iraq and nullify the sacrifices made by American men and women so far. We can't afford to lose in Iraq or everyone with an AK-47 will think they can be the United States. Not only that but the war in Iraq is a lightning rod for terrorists. As long as we're fighting them there where it's convenient for them to fight, they're not coming over here to America. President Bush started pitching this game and he needs to finish it.

I also fear what John Kerry said about putting the American defenses up against a more global test. The rest of the world doesn't elect the president and shouldn't have the final say in how we defend ourselves as a sovereign country. The president and the American people have the final say in how we defend our nation. President Bush has the courage to do that and he will get my vote.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks for answering my question. It helps to get the insight of someone who it is more directly involved. Have a great weekend with Mrs. GWM.

7:08 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Hi Hi Hi Hi Hi Hi Hi Hi Hi HI Hi HI Hi Hi Hi Hi Hi Hi Hi Hi. Are we feeling the love yet? More people than just mom and dad are reading your site. You are thought of daily and loved more than you know. I would like to make a comment about Bush and Kerry. I agree with you when you said that Bush started this war and he should finish it. I also think that Bush doesn't carry unrealistic views about this war. Or what the army can and can'nt do to win this war. I don't trust Kerry not to remove troops at a crucial time and cause us to lose everything we worked so hard to acheive over there. Not to mention leaving our troops exsposed and open to defeat in Iraq. I don't trust anything he says. I feel it will be like having another Clinton in the white house minus the relational scandal. I think that Bush is a more trustworthy apponent and we know just what to expect with him. I know Bush gets my vote. TM

7:45 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Bush gets my vote also! In regard to not having the newer equipment, do you anticipate receiving these things in Iraq? Will your cell have restricitions over there or will you be able to call home to the kids and wife? Will you fly on a military plane or commercial, like in the states? I can't imagine the tourist traffic is very heavy at this point.Glad you guys have this week-end. zm

9:15 AM  
Blogger SCM said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

2:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Beautiful day in Indiana. Guess you are enjoying Texas today too. KM

3:30 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ok--I guess it is pretty crummy to keep reading your site and not saying anything--kinda like calling someone and just listening. I usually share your funny stories with most people I meet. "You won't believe the funny thing my friend g posted on his blog yesterday..." Everyone except that nice Wal-Mart clerk has heard a good gwm story from me--I've even considered starting my own blog but I think it would be pretty boring. Here's my question of the day: How's the food there and do you ever get to eat spam or tang?

9:58 PM  
Blogger J. said...

This is my first time reading your site, and I truly hope you continue posting to your blog. I am in a similar situation to yourself. I, however, was placed on "stop loss" orders after my orginal ETS date passed (2004JUL23) I will definately keep up with you site. Keep up the good work!

10:09 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey I'm reading too. My Dad says he has been looking at your site just about every day also. I am very very interested in your take on how things really are when you get to Iraq. It's a sad state of affairs that Both of these men are our only two choices for President. It's hard for me to figure out what is real and what is political babble. We (KSW and me) think, pray and speak of you often. I'll try to give you a shout out from your peeps a little more often. TSW

8:26 AM  
Blogger Ms Mac said...

Swiss Greetings.

8:34 AM  
Blogger Joshua P. Angell said...

Hi. I have a blog too:
I just wanted to tell you, although we do not agree that Bush should be re-elected, and my political viewpoints are very different from yours:
I appreciate what you are doing for America.
I am voting for Kerry, because I want people like you to come home.
God Bless You, and your service.
Josh in Austin Texas

8:48 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It is not eceryday that I am able to drop you a line. I am glad to hear that the Mrs. was able to visit. We are praying and thinking about you everyday. Are you sure the little tapioca under your arm is from the shot or from your new living quarters? Just a thought. Will drop you another line soon. JJM

6:27 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well I left a comment recently but the anonymous person above me accidentally deleted my comment. I meant every word I said before hopefully you read it before it got deleted. If not I basically said We are all still praying for you and thinking about you daily. Hope you had an awesome time with Mrs.GWM

8:45 PM  
Blogger grrprr said...

Okay, among all these spiritual and political queries (years old), I have one that I can't find anywhere:

In Iraq, at, say, an FOB (Se? I know jargon now), is there a "Lights Out"? And then everyone's up at when?

I can only relate it to Girl Scout Camp. And I don't get up early unless the drapes are on fire.

SO -- how do you know when to go to bed or get up, and is it required? Do soldiers read books under the covers by flashlight or play Risk by candlelight?

9:46 PM  

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