A Promise Kept
President Obama officially ended the war in Iraq today. Final combat troops will return by the end of the month. This is a war that never should have been fought. President Bush lied to the American people and said Iraq had weapons of mass destruction and were part of the 9/11 plot. Neither claim was true.
The National Council of Churches and nearly every other Christian body in the United States and across the globe opposed the Bush's administrations rush to war. But Democratic presidential candidates gearing up for the 2004 and 2008 presidential races - including John Kerry, John Edwards and Hillary Clinton - backed President Bush and the result was nine years of war - nearly 5,000 Americans killed, many more wounded, and tens of thousands of Iraqis killed and wounded.
Barack Obama, however, opposed the war from the start and promised to end it if elected. He has kept that promise. I supported Barack Obama in 2007 in large part because of his moral clarity on this important issue that has defined the last decade.
Today President Obama wrote:
Part of ending a war responsibly is standing by those who have fought it. It's not enough to honor our heroes with words; we must do so with deeds.
That's why we've worked to send 600,000 veterans and family members back to school on the Post-9/11 GI Bill. That's why one of Michelle's top priorities as First Lady has been to support military families and why she's worked with the private sector to get commitments to create 100,000 jobs for those who've served and their spouses. That's why we worked with Congress to pass a tax credit so that companies have an incentive to hire vets and have taken steps to help veterans translate military experience to the private sector job market.
In America, our commitment to those who fight for our freedom and our ideals doesn't end when our troops take off the uniform.
You can be a part of this effort to honor our heroes.
Help mark this moment. Write a quick note that troops and veterans all over the world will be able to see:
Please take this opportunity to thank our troops and we must all commitment to stronly supporting effortings undertaken by President Obama and Secretary Clinton to help re-build Iraq. Our humanitarian responsibility is clear.