President Bush is set to address the nation Wednesday night at 8:00 p.m. He is scheduled to outline his plan for Iraq, which is expected to include sending more than 20,000 additional troops overseas, an issue many Wisconsinites are mixed about.
As the president prepares to address the nation, Buzz Davis of the Wisconsin Bring Our Troops Home Coalition is pounding the pavement and pounding on doors. Davis is trying to get neighbors to sign 2 petitions. He says, "I'm doing two petition drives one on bringing the troops home." The other petition is to start an impeachment process for the current administration. Davis served in VietNam and believes the war in Iraq is an eerily similar fight. "Sometimes we have to fight in this country when our country is attacked, but this country has not been attacked, we do not have to fight for war, for oil, we can deal with it in other ways, in political solutions." Davis doesn't want to see any more troops sent to Iraq. He says "What we need is for the us to pull out of Iraq, withdraw all forces from Iraq, contractors from Iraq who are also military forces who are trying to privatize the country US out UN in."
But not everyone agrees. Scott Kruchten says, "Cut and run, what then do the lives of the service members we've lost, what does that mean to , not only to them, but their families?" An issue temporarily retired Marine Reservist Scott Kruchten experienced first hand while deployed south of Baghdad in 2004. Kruchten says, "the vehicle was hit with an IED during a patrol, motorized and walking and just wrong place wrong time." He is the only one of the 5 marines riding in the Hum-V to survive. Kruchten says, "I sustained injuries from head to toe basically and over the course of the past 2 years I've recovered a great amount."
Kruchten believes deploying more troops will make a big difference in the fight against terror, and that US troops in Iraq have already made a big difference. "I believe there does have to be more troops, partly in the fact that it will speed up the training of the iraqi national guard and military, the Iraqi Police to be able to sustain themselves," says Kruchten.
An increasingly controversial topic that will no doubt be closely watched as the president addresses the nation.
We also spoke to the Wisconsin National Guard who says it's ready to answer the president's call if asked. Lt. Colonel Tim Donovan says even if more troops deploy as part of the president's new plan, the state will have enough resources on the ground here at home and that only about 10% of available guard service men and women are deployed.