By Chrissy the Hyphenated
Office of George W. Bush
P.O. Box 259000
Dallas, TX 75225-9000
Dear Sir, May 22, 2011
I am enjoying reading your wonderful book.
Today, I read “The region is more hopeful” on p. 267 and felt I needed to send you the enclosed “Hope and Pride in Iraq: August 8, 2007” written by our daughter, while she was serving in The Surge in Iraq.
… [personal info] …
Oddly enough, my husband and I were born and raised in very liberal areas of deep blue states and come from totally civilian families. We’re not sure quite what we did right to have been blessed with our brood of heroes, but we Thank God for whatever it was, as we also Thank God for having had your leadership in the years post-9/11.
We miss that, but are delighted that you and yours are enjoying a well-earned and peaceful retirement out of the limelight and away from the Left’s ire. Please give our best to the lovely Laura and tell her we very much miss her too.
Sincerely in the love of Jesus Our Lord,
… [Chrissy the Hyphenated and SalTEADog]…
Hope and Pride in Iraq: August 8, 2007
By an American Soldier who had been living in Iraq for twelve months
I think it is hard to understand the people here unless you live among them as I have done. Many times, I have been frustrated at how they never seem to stand up for themselves and try to make things better. But with all that has happened in this country, things like hope and pride have been notably absent.
In areas that do not have a steady-state presence of Coalition Forces, daily life is mostly about keeping loved ones safe. But where Coalition Forces are in control, the locals can think beyond mere survival. Because they turn to us for security and medical help, there is no doubt in my mind that they are happy we are here.
For more than 25 years, Iraqis have had little or no say in local government and their young people know nothing about law enforcement, except that it is wise to avoid whichever people with guns are control at the moment.
But the people here are tired of the insurgency and tired of not being allowed to govern themselves and yesterday I saw seedlings of change. Yesterday, I saw Iraqis who were feeling both pride in their own country and hope that they can fix the things that are wrong and turn their homeland into a great nation.
Yesterday, I sat in on a meeting with the leaders of a newly formed, local security force. Dressed in their finest clothes, armed with notebooks and pens, representatives from each tribe talked with great excitement, because for the first time in a quarter of a century, they were being given a chance to govern their own villages. The list of volunteers willing to provide twenty-four-hour protection on the roads and in the villages contained more than 2,000 names!
Then last night, I watched the locals bubbling over with excitement and pride when their national soccer team won the prestigious Asia Cup tournament. And there it all was: what we have been waiting for since the fall of Saddam. Iraqis with pride in their country, hope for the future, and the willingness to stand up and fight for change.
I know the fanatics who choose to kill innocent bystanders with their suicide bombs will not disappear over night. But the change has started. And watching this exciting change in these people among whom I have lived and worked for the past twelve months, I think I finally understand what our founding fathers must have felt.