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Thank You Gerald Ford for Your Silence on the Iraq War

December 28, 2006

From the Washington Post: On July 28, 2004, former president Gerald R. Ford sat down for an interview with The Washington Post’s Bob Woodward. The interview was conducted at Ford’s Beaver Creek, Colo., house; the former president agreed that his comments could be published any time after his death. Follows is a smattering of former President Ford’s observations:

Ford, speaking on the condition that his remarks would not be published while he was still alive, expressed a realpolitik perspective on foreign policy and appeared to question Bush’s priorities in that 2004 interview (see also: “Ford Disagreed With Bush About Invading Iraq”).

Ah, what? All said two years ago… Did the cat have your tongue Mr. President? Oh, that’s right, you were lending cover to your fellow Republicans. Geez, great way to “Support the Troops!

On January 3, 2007 2:40 PM, cck said:

The fault lies not with Gerald Ford but squarely on the shoulders of Bush, Cheney and Rumsfeld.

I think that’s absolutely true as long as you’re talking about who’s responsible for starting and continuing the war. But the original posting was about the responsibility of private individuals, particularly those influential w/voting Republicans, once the ‘error’ has been made.

It is insulting to say he could be excused specifically because he was elderly —that’s insulting and patronizing, trivializing and dismissive to all aging persons. Indeed, if in acceptable health and mentally acute, those of age and experience should be the ones speaking out! And it’s not whether he was capable of doing so or wanted to do so - clearly he did, because he granted the interview. I would have to agree w/the inference to be drawn from the first posting - that he had a moral imperative as a member of the ‘ruling’ party and a former President and Commander in Chief to weigh in if he knew it was an error; it could’ve swayed people who can [and did] act to put in a new Congress, to impeach, whatever. It could arguably have shortened the killing-time. And what is balanced against that opportunity to speak out? His desire to die before he made his opinion public - a kind of self-protection or the same blind support and partyline that’s gotten us to this point to begin with?

I don’t think the original poster was suggesting that the blame for the war itself lies anywhere except at the door of this administration. But the blame for not speaking out seriously and bravely lies with all of us who have waited or who did not educate ourselves early-on and more so w/people who can sway public opinion when they speak. It’s a shame and cowardly of any who know it’s a mistake, on whatever level, and do not say so while soldier-children are killed and civilians killed, children…

Ford was an adequate president and probably a fine man and husband, but if he believed there was an error, his patriotic duty was to speak out —and once he did, not instruct that it be held until after his death. Sad, really. But not something many of us, including perhaps myself, haven’t done as well in one way or another.

On December 28, 2006 12:12 PM, weewill said:

Gerald Ford can certainly be forgiven for not speaking out 2 years ago. The man was 91 years old, had served his time admirably and was living a well deserved peaceful and non-political life in his final years. I suspect he also knew the intentional deceit and truth spinning avoidance games played by both the President and Vice President throughout this whole faulted administration.

He knew that neither he nor anyone else could make this bunch admit their mistakes. They were omnipotent and believed their way was the only way. They stubbornly committed to “stay the course” regardless of who told them they were wrong.

The fault lies not with Gerald Ford but squarely on the shoulders of Bush, Cheney and Rumsfeld.


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