But how do we admit we were wrong? One way would be for the electorate to speak clearly with their ballots. They did so in November 2006, but that election has had no impact on the war's course.
Another way would be to impeach Bush. At other times, in other places, leaders who made major blunders — whether their fault or not — were expected to leave the scene. In this case, that is unlikely. Impeachment is unlikely, as well. Between the rigid party loyalists and the congressmen who are waiting longingly for the balance of Bush's term to expire, the votes are not available.
But in theory, impeachment is an attractive idea, not as a punishment for Bush, but as a way of saying that, knowing what we know now, we would never have gone into Iraq, which is a proposition that even thoughtful pro-war citizens should accept. It would be a way of taking this war away from our leaders who have mishandled it so badly.
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John M. Crisp teaches in the English Department at Del Mar College in Corpus Christi, Texas. His e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org.