George Hesselberg has a great piece in today's Wisconsin State Journal on Bob Keith, a Janesville "old school" blue collar worker and blogger, and his recent solo trip to Iraq to see it for himself.
Keith nails it:
"I have never been satisfied with someone else telling me how I should feel, and that's what I was getting about Iraq. Tie in the fact that this is what I heard during the Vietnam years, only this time around it was not good enough. I wanted to find out for myself," he said.
"I know it is dangerous to compare the two wars. But there are dead solders in a war that doesn't appear it is going to end. And I found out there is no Iraq to put back together."
"...I believe that we are arguing in America about an Iraq that doesn't really exist," he said.
He said by going to Iraq, he was simply applying the wisdom of a good Wisconsin farmer: "You learn as a farmer to know what you are talking about, otherwise you get your head handed to you. We have (more than) 60 soldiers from Wisconsin who have died there. I think it was important for me to breathe that air that so many of our people have lost their lives over."
Based on what he saw, he says reluctantly, "If victory is a solid Iraq, then I don't see them ever putting it together again."
Keith's blog is just what blogs should be: individualistic, quirky, and personal journalism. Anyone who can review southern Wisconsin Friday fish fry joints, dead sociologists, Vietnam, and parse terms like "Man-Palace" and "McNamaran-esk" (wars) deserves a prominent bookmark. Cooldadiomedia.com is my new favorite Wisconsin blog.