Not predictable. Predicted. Over at DailyKos is a powerful diary by the wife of a Vietnam & Iraq I war veteran. During a discussion with a bunch of conservative college students, the following happened (italics mine):
A little blonde got up enough nerve to say something. My husband wouldn’t tell me exactly what she said, but I can picture it. My nieces, Thing 1 and Thing 2, are fairly typical college students. They back Bush 110% because he’s the president and a Christian and God chose him to be president instead of that arrogant Al Gore or that CATHOLIC LIBERAL John Kerry ( cps indicate a voice rising sharply). They regard any questioning of the Official Point of View as damn near treason. They are certain that we hadn’t invaded Iraq and if the Patriot At weren’t intruding on our rights and if they hadn’t used torture at Abu Ghraib and if those Evil Monsters weren’t locked up in Gitmo, well, fer shure, there’d have been another 9/11. They are pretty much typical of students down here. Not all of them are like this–but a lot are. Raised in a fundamentalist Christianity that doesn’t look kindly upon asking hard questions or thinking critically and gives points for accepting what authority figures tell you, they don’t even know how to begin to question.
My husband lost it. “How many of you have served in Iraq? None. How many of you have served in the military? None. How many of you have friends or family members who’re serving or have served in Iraq? None. How many of you know someone who’s been ion combat? How many of you know anyone who’s active duty or retired military? None.”
He stood up. ” Well, actually you do. Me. Twenty three years in the Navy, seen combat, seen what Saddam was capable of. I got out so I didn’t have to fight a war based on lies. I follow the news, and by October 2002, anyone who took the trouble to do so would have known that the aluminum tubes used by Bush to support his belief that Saddam was trying to rebuils his nuke program was crap. By January, I knew that Joseph Wilson had debunked the attempt to buy yellowcake uranium in Niger as a fraud. I turned down a promotion that would have given me 3 years of job security and a sizable improvement in my pension so I wouldn’t have to fight for a lie. I remember Nam, and I can see the similarities. And so would you if you’d stop watching Fox News and actually think for a while.”
The guy next to him moved to another table as if criticizing the president was a contagious disease.
The whole post is worth a read because it puts this statement in cultural and historical context.