To My Brother Ron Christie, Let's Have a Debate About Who Really Supports The Troops

With respect:

When Harry Reid was fighting for more body armor, more armored vehicles for the troops, and was opposed by George Bush and Dick Cheney, who do you believe was right?

Did you stand with Reid, supporting the body armor and armored vehicles, or did you stand with Republicans who opposed those efforts at the time?

When Harry Reid was fighting for more funds and support for healthcare and benefits for wounded troops, and American veterans, did you stand with Republicans who opposed that support for troops and vets? Or did you
stand with Harry Reid, who was fighting for them?

When the Joint Chiefs of Staff overwhelmingly advised against the surge and pleaded with the president to realize it would be a mistake, did you side with the president, or with Harry Reid and the Joint Chiefs of Staff?

When Secretary of Defense Bob Gates says in recent hours that efforts by Democrats to discuss timetables are helpful to the effort, because it pressures Iraqis to do what they should have done long ago, do you side with Secretary Gates, or against him? Don't you agree with Gates that pressure on Iraqis is important, which is what Harry Reid has been
fighting for all along?

When Harry Reid was fighting for financial support for military families and troops, many of whom were facing extreme hardship, did you stand with Reid and will you stand with him today?

When Harry Reid and Jim Webb are pushing for the equivalent of a new G.I. Bill to provide major new long-term aid to troops, vets and military families, can I count on you to stand publicly alongside Reid and Webb in support?

When Harry Reid says today we must fight for long-term support for all the health needs of our wounded heroes, which are today dramatically underfunded and undersupported, are you standing with Harry Reid in this long-term support of our wounded troops?

Do you agree with the president, who has now apologized for neglecting needs of wounded troops, and do you now agree with Harry Reid, who has always fought for greater assistance and will escalate this battle again, hopefully
with your support and that of your former boss, the vice president?

When the Republicans on the Baker Hamilton Group advocate a long series of new policy moves, do you stand with Harry Reid, who supports views held unamimously by the Baker Hamiliton Commmission, or do you stand with those including the president and vice president, who adamantly refuse to implement them?

Do you agree with Harry Reid that we must do far more to provide help for troops who face major brain injury and post traumatic stress disorder? Surely you will be proud to stand with the majority leader now in support of these actions that he has long advocated!  Did you stand with him last year, as I did, proudly, in support of these measures?

Did you agree with the commanders, who wanted far more troops for the Iraq mission all along, or the president, who refused their request for reinforcements at Tora Bora and allowed bin Laden to escape at the very moment we could have killed him?

Who was right, Ron — the commanders who wanted reinforcements at Tora Bora, or the president and vice president, who refused their urgent request?

Do you agree with Harry Reid and Gen.

Sheehan, who believe the president now has no idea about a clear policy going forward and needs to make major changes or face continued major disaster?

Who was right, Ron — the Joint Chiefs and the Iraq commanders, and Harry Reid, who did not advocate the surge, or George Bush, who ignored them all and did the surge that the chiefs and the commanders at the time advised him not to do?

Let's have a real debate, right here on The Hill Pundits Blog, a showdown at OK Corral, about who supports the troops and whether you will join Harry Reid on the many initiatives he is fighting for today, and has fought for, for many
years, in support of the troops and the military families that Reid has championed, over the objections of the administration.

I have much more, but let's start a debate right here, in my answer to your essay, and your answer, I hope, to mine.

Had Harry Reid's advice been heeded over the last several years, don't you agree that there would be far fewer Gold Star mothers, and far better treatment for wounded troops?

When Harry Reid has been advocating new policies often supported by military leaders, for several years, don't you now agree that Harry Reid and those military leaders were right, and that George W. Bush and Dick Cheney were wrong?