Sammy the Limo Driver & The War in Iraq

Sammy the Limo Driver & The War in Iraq

A few days ago, my wife Lita and I, along with our two Bischons’s, Napoleon and Josephine, Iraq were being driven to the Scottsdale airport for our flight back to Gig Harbor. During the drive our driver (call me "Sammy"), said he had been in Iraq for two years eight months and had recently returned. He was a translator for the military. He said he had been born in Iraq where his father was an engineer with the oil industry and then they moved to Lebanon and from there to the United States where he was raised in a Christian home. About forty years old, married with two children, he was living in Phoenix where they attended the Baptist Church. He wanted to join the FBI and was taking this job temporarily working for the transportation company after his return. He spoke both Aramaic, the language of Jesus, and Arabic. In Iraq he was a civilian assigned to military units and with his language skills served as a translator. So what was his take on the war in Iraq? His view was that we were right in invading the country. He claimed the majority of Iraqis were glad we were there and only "a minority" were causing all the killing and trouble. These were, in his view Muslim radicals. He thought we were "too soft" and should allow the Iraqis to interrogate and even torture to get information. He maintained Iran was the real source of the problems and needed to be "controlled." We need to "win" the war in his opinion. In brief, he was a perfect spokesman for the Bush position on the war. My take was Sammy was sincere and not mouthing what he thought the conservative Phoenix people wanted to hear, but I was somewhat surprised. I had supposed, given his background, he would have talked about the complexity of the historical dispute between Shiite and Sunni which plays such an important role in the present situation there. To have seen the situation in such a crisp black and white Bush-Cheney view was not what I expected, but is a viewpoint that probably reflects an understandable military attitude of those risking their livies in Iraq.

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