The PS crowd (you know, Patti Sheehan's band of anti-war/anti-Americans) has asked this question (reiterated on Fox News Sunday by a mother of a soldier killed in Iraq):
What is the noble cause our children are dying for?
Ma'am: For the removal of an oppressive dictator and his regime, one that invaded two neighbors, killed hundreds of thousands of it's own people, so that his nation of 26 million could have the freedom to vote to give themselves democracy and liberties unavailable to almost anyone else in the region, yes, even if that choice is to have a theocracy.
But the PS crowd will not accept my answer. They do not believe our soldiers should die to give others freedom. They do not believe we have any RIGHT or OBLIGATION to impose OUR way of life - democracy and freedom - on other cultures. They do not believe our way of life is better than the Iraqis under Saddam, or the people of Afghanistan are better off out from under the Taliban. As a matter of fact, they think our way of life is VERY MUCH WORSE than that.
The PS crowd does not accept that there is any answer to their question that is satisfactory. Either we did it for oil, for greed, for imperialism, for revenge, or for religious reasons, but no matter the reason, it is not worthy of dying for.
Another point raised by the mother on Fox and the PS crowd is the moral of our troops. They don't think their questioning the deployment of troops is in any way demoralizing the troops. They think they are supporting the troops....at least they say they are.
Here is a suggestion. If you believe questioning the purpose of our deployment in Iraq is not demoralizing - find a soldier on R&R from Iraq and ask them face to face if we are doing the right thing. Make sure to point out that you believe Iraqis were better off under Saddam....
I have thanked soldiers for their service several times over the last 3 years...have you?