3 readers online now  |  69 million page views

Purple Hearts & Defense of Rumsfeld

Reader comment on item: Tempering Ambitions [in Iraq]

Submitted by linda (United States), Nov 11, 2006 at 22:39

A message to any enemies of America who may come upon this – you have no idea what you're getting yourself into. You may think the squabbling of political interests is the big story in America. (Maybe it is to the media that you mistakenly over emphasize.) Much more powerful is the story of our fighting forces and the goodness of the American people. (The public may have to wake up at some point, but the troops are well aware of what you are up to.) You will fail. I promise you.

The following comments were made by Lieutenant General R. Steven Whitcomb, Commanding General of the Third Army, U.S. Army Central, Coalition Forces Land Component Command out of Kuwait (who is in charge of all forces eventually going into Iraq) -- at the opening of the National Purple Heart Hall of Hope in New Windsor, NY on Nov. 10, 2006. Governor George Pataki and Sen. Hillary Clinton were among those present -- a story unto itself (the thousands were clearly appreciative of veteran-friendly Pataki, not so with Clinton, who evoked a Korean War gentleman to loudly proclaim, "What's she doing here? She couldn't care less about the military"). By the way, Gov. Pataki has a son who has recently entered the Marine Corps.

Lt. Gen. Whitcomb said in part: (notice the echoing of Donald Rumsfeld's correct assertion that this is a misunderstood, complex war that many do not understand):

"Once again our nation has called to duty its best, its brightest and certainly its bravest. This enemy is different today. He isn't the clearly defined enemy of the Cold War who was constrained by borders or who more or less followed international law or who maintained large structured armies, navies and air forces. He is faceless, nationless and is able to claim credit for success without ever having to face any responsibility for failure. The enemy hides behind regional, national and ethnic borders. He does not obey the laws of war or of humanity.

"This enemy knows he can't defeat us militarily on the battlefield, but he is smart and he is media savvy. He uses our media to intimidate and inspire. This enemy sees the U.S. population as the center of gravity. They want to fight us on the information battlefield in living rooms and newspapers across the world. He sees the will and resolve of the American people as the point of failure.

"But he underestimates us as many enemies in the past have. This is not a religious or cultural clash, although our extremist enemies find it useful to characterize it that way. And most importantly, this is an enemy that is true to his word. And we must read every sentence when he speaks...this is a victory over time, not a 10-point victory. There will be no surrender, no signing of a peace treaty on the deck of a battleship. Because the enemy has a vote, our national tactic must adapt and be flexible to fight this war.

"This war involves all of our elements of national power – diplomatic, information, military and economic – and the steadfastness of our allies. We have no option. But winning battles and wars comes at a cost. All things eerily at peace here today in this great field, a hallowed ground of history. But make no mistake – we are a nation at war.

"I know our troops will meet the challenge. And if our enemies could but see the heart and spirit of our Purple Heart recipients, they would quickly know that we will stop at nothing ‘till the mission is complete."


Note: Opinions expressed in comments are those of the authors alone and not necessarily those of Daniel Pipes. Original writing only, please. Comments are screened and in some cases edited before posting. Reasoned disagreement is welcome but not comments that are scurrilous, off-topic, commercial, disparaging religions, or otherwise inappropriate. For complete regulations, see the "Guidelines for Reader Comments".

Submit a comment on this item

<< Previous Comment      Next Comment >>

Reader comments (46) on this item

Title Commenter Date Thread
Success in Iraq [161 words]stranchanMay 26, 2012 02:38195842
Iraq in 10 years from now [95 words]sevillaMay 11, 2012 04:30195551
Iraq after withdrawal [66 words]KeralaApr 19, 2012 00:40195188
Question for Dr. Pipes regarding Green zone in Baghdad [227 words]
w/response from Daniel Pipes
American MuslimDec 3, 2006 00:5868093
Militarily we already won.. but politically? [260 words]AndrewNov 15, 2006 20:4766260
Two Postscripts [95 words]Susan WalkerNov 14, 2006 06:2966070
Kurds and Sunnis [48 words]JayNov 13, 2006 23:2466050
In War: Resolution [263 words]JackdawNov 13, 2006 22:4466047
When We Lost the Battle of Iraq [266 words]Douglas BoggsNov 13, 2006 22:0266043
Goals according to Bush + BEWARE OF SPIN! [193 words]MelMNov 13, 2006 18:4866035
Correct Strategy for Iraq [176 words]Chris ChrismanNov 13, 2006 13:0065999
It Is What It Is [65 words]Jeffrey BradleyNov 12, 2006 23:0065958
Pulling out. [143 words]John RNov 12, 2006 22:3065957
I respectfully disagree. [116 words]John PhilipsNov 12, 2006 22:0465955
National Schizophrenia & Political Paralysis [500 words]AbijahNov 12, 2006 18:2465946
A Caveat [49 words]Richard WittrupNov 12, 2006 17:5665942
Am I the Only Bush Defender? [90 words]lindaNov 15, 2006 17:0265942
You're not alone. [194 words]Kevin MNov 16, 2006 11:5565942
Dare to Be Different [239 words]lindaNov 16, 2006 19:3765942
America's successes or failures in Iraq [276 words]Maurice PicowNov 12, 2006 14:3665926
Iraq [168 words]A. MaranoNov 12, 2006 22:2365926
WOW! [224 words]BlackspeareNov 12, 2006 10:0765912
Some challenges to Dr Pipes' ideas [549 words]Stuart FaginNov 12, 2006 09:4365910
Hold the Fort [489 words]K.H. AhmedNov 12, 2006 08:3665907
ratchet down [133 words]Yuval Brandstetter MDNov 12, 2006 07:4965904
Our Understanding of Iraq [314 words]Leonard MarkowitzNov 12, 2006 05:5865901
West point has not, but Israel certainly had [237 words]
w/response from Daniel Pipes
Yuval Brandstetter MDNov 14, 2006 07:4665901
The Failure of the Bush Doctrine [455 words]Prof. Paul EidelbergNov 12, 2006 01:5865892
Purple Hearts & Defense of Rumsfeld [605 words]lindaNov 11, 2006 22:3965880
Success in Iraq [177 words]Peter NamtvedtNov 11, 2006 21:1065863
We Tried, We Failed [1188 words]J.A. MorrisNov 11, 2006 20:5965861
"We swear we will not rest from our jihad... before blowing up the filthiest house, dubbed the White House," [544 words]FreemanNov 11, 2006 20:5565860
Is this Victory? and Tempering Ambitions [101 words]John LothNov 11, 2006 20:5065858
VICTORY AT ALL COSTS [472 words]JackdawNov 11, 2006 17:5565844
response to your comments [141 words]TinaNov 11, 2006 20:4865844
You are 100000 % correct ! US must crush these Islamist Terrorists ruthlessly [130 words]MahatmaNov 11, 2006 21:1565844
Cultural transfiguration [244 words]David W. LincolnNov 11, 2006 17:0665840
comment on your comment [128 words]TinaNov 11, 2006 20:3765840
All the seven accused in July 11 Terror Attacks are Muslims [151 words]RamanNov 11, 2006 21:3565840
Evaluating societies [158 words]David W. LincolnNov 12, 2006 17:0865840
Point of Clarification [194 words]David W. LincolnNov 12, 2006 17:2065840
Don't give up [162 words]Octavio JohansonNov 11, 2006 16:4065837
you're not up on the news [104 words]TinaNov 11, 2006 20:2965837
Bajaur madrassa trained suicide bombers: Musharraf ( An honest confession of an Islamist ) [301 words]LeaderNov 11, 2006 21:2065837
A perfect exit stategy, unlike Vietnam: Jacobs Ladder comes of age [53 words]Mark-Alan WhittleNov 11, 2006 15:2965831
depressing [261 words]TinaNov 11, 2006 15:1265830

Comment on this item

Mark my comment as a response to Purple Hearts & Defense of Rumsfeld by linda

Email me if someone replies to my comment

Note: Opinions expressed in comments are those of the authors alone and not necessarily those of Daniel Pipes. Original writing only, please. Comments are screened and in some cases edited before posting. Reasoned disagreement is welcome but not comments that are scurrilous, off-topic, commercial, disparaging religions, or otherwise inappropriate. For complete regulations, see the "Guidelines for Reader Comments".

See recent outstanding comments.

Follow Daniel Pipes

Facebook   Twitter   RSS   Join Mailing List


eXTReMe Tracker

All materials by Daniel Pipes on this site: © 1968-2019 Daniel Pipes. daniel.pipes@gmail.com and @DanielPipes

Support Daniel Pipes' work with a tax-deductible donation to the Middle East Forum.Daniel J. Pipes

(The MEF is a publicly supported, nonprofit organization under section 501(c)3 of the Internal Revenue Code.

Contributions are tax deductible to the full extent allowed by law. Tax-ID 23-774-9796, approved Apr. 27, 1998.

For more information, view our IRS letter of determination.)