Presidents Face Critics During Every Wartime
Lincoln claimed that Polk "knows not where he is. He is a bewildered, confounded and miserably perplexed man."
Dunn goes on to say the situation is the same today when people of good faith criticize President Bush. Mr. Dunn chose a bad example because the United States did win the Mexican War, and Lincoln was defeated in his bid for reelection as a Congressman.
Speaking of opposition to presidents, I recently finished a book on George Washington entitled "Washington's Secret War: The Hidden History of Valley Forge" by Thomas Fleming. I was amazed to learn to what depths Washington's enemies stooped to bring him down.
Forged documents, unsigned letters leaked to the press, rumors, vicious backbiting and consorting with the enemy, all came at a time when Washington was trying to keep a starving, freezing army together. It took a man of unique strength and willpower to fight both the British and his political opponents at the same time.
Lincoln, having put the Mexican War behind him, faced a similar situation as president during the Civil War. Few presidents were as vilified in the press and made targets of innuendo and libel.
With these two historical examples of lack of support by the opposition, it should not come as a surprise that the American press still has a history of vilification and that the "loyal opposition" was and is anything but "loyal."
It seems our nation is fated to see recurrences of a press and politicians that are more interested in agendas that serve their purposes and not the country's.
Donald Van Roosen
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