“I will begin by saying what everybody would like to ignore or forget but which must nevertheless be stated, namely, that we have sustained a total and unmitigated defeat.” -- That was Winston Churchill’s description of Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain's surrender to Hitler in the Munich Agreement of 1938.
Yet Churchill's words also apply to where the United States is today.
Our men and women in uniform have been heroic.
Many have signed up to serve again even after being wounded.
Our tactical units remain the best in the world.
Our intelligence officers and diplomats have risked their lives in service to the country.
The problem is not with the sincerity, the courage, the energy or the effort of individual Americans.
The problem has been the approach of a bipartisan Washington political elite that has squandered 15 years, thousands of lives, many thousands wounded, and trillions of dollars with no coherent strategy, no honest assessment of the challenge, and no willingness to learn from failure and develop new strategies and new institutions.
Since September 11, 2001, we have moved from righteous anger and clarity of purpose against the forces of terrorism in the immediate aftermath of the attacks to now sending $1,700,000,000 in cash to the world’s leading state sponsor of terrorism.
We have watched our efforts in Iraq collapse while our efforts in Afghanistan decay.