Tuesday, May 31, 2005


There's a nasty row going on over the "Doonesbury" cartoon this weekend that listed the names of U.S. servicemen and women killed in this Iraq war. Some, like Don Suber, find it unseemly attention-getting, and an attempt to turn a respectful memorial to the dead into Just Another Anti-War Statement.

He responds with a list of the service members killed in the attack on the Pentagon on Sept. 11, 2001. And that, of course, draws ugly responses from our friends on the left. And so it goes.

Clearly the creator of "Doonesbury" is anti-Iraq War. But that does not make him anti-military, or automatically disqualify him from an honest feeling for the memories of the fallen. Some of his recent strips show a genuine sympathy for the soldiers and an effort to understand what they're going through. Suber, too, seems honestly respectful of them.

Certainly, among the dead who have come home from Iraq under American flags there have been many who would agree with "Doonesbury" and many who would agree with Suber. That says something about America and that's part of what we ought to remember.

But one of the critical comment on Don Surber's page is a transparent example of Memorial Day sentiment hijacked in the service of a modern political mania.

If you get a chance, I strongly encourage you to read the Doonesbury comic strip. Spend an hour or so reading the names of the Americans who have given their lives in the Iraq War. Honor those Americans for their commitment to protecting our security. They went to Iraq because their leaders told them they must go to defend their country.

And less than two paragraphs later, his fingers are still typing about soldiers as victims, but he's forgotten them and all he's really seeing -- as he no doubt sees wherever he turns his wild eyes, is Shrubbie McChimplerburton! in all his evil guises:

So, stop by the memorial, and let the cost of human lives sink in. Think about the huge number of Iraqi citizens, including children, that have died as a result of this war. Consider the chaos that envelops Iraq today. Think about how we were misled by the mainstream media and the government in the lead up to the invasion. How the WMD never materialized. How it was known that Iraq was not a threat to its neighbors, much less the United States. Then ask yourself the tough question. Has the looss of life been worth it? Every time you go to the polls to vote, imagine the lives of the 1800 families without their loved ones. And ask yourself. Can I continue to support a government that believes in preemptive war?