Ryan Henowitz, a former Army medic who served in Iraq asked Karl Rove to apologize for his role in orchestrating the Iraq war. This occurred during a planned speech by Karl Rove for a small crowd at the University of Connecticut in Storrs on March 31, 2014.
“Hi, My name is Ryan Henowitz. When I was 20 years old like many students here I had a lot of questions about life and the way the world worked. Back then I was known as Private Ryan Henowitz and I was about to invade Iraq as a Medic in the 2nd Battalion of the 7th Infantry Regiment. I saw my friends torn apart and Iraqi children screaming for their parents as indiscriminate shrapnel scarred them and us in ways that we will never know. We were exposed to more questions about life and death then any 20 year old should have. These scars stay with me and other veterans who are now one of the highest demographics to commit suicide at a rate of 22 suicides per day, and over thousands disabled.
“I have taken responsibility for my actions and dealt with my demons while advocating for a peaceful resolution of a war that was an act of aggression with no clear goal. Can you take responsibility and apologize for your decision in sending a generation to lose their humanity and deal with the horrors of war, which you have never had the courage to face? Will you apologize to the millions of fathers and mothers who lost their children on both sides of this useless war?”
“It was right to remove Saddam Hussein from power. It was right. He had thumbed his nose at the international community, which had passed at the United Nations 14 resolutions, calling upon him to live up to the [inaudible] agreement at the end of the First World War, that’s accurate. Fourteen times he gave the finger to the U.N. He was a state sponsor of terrorism and in the aftermath of 9/11 he represented—he was diverting tens of millions of dollars in the Oil for Food Program to keep the network of scientists and engineers building his facilities to reconstitute his weapons facilities. He admitted as much to his FBI interrogators. He said ‘The West is losing interest, the West is losing interest in and I’m able to get, I was able to keep the [inaudible] and they would lose their interest and the sanctions would regime would fall out of place and I would be able to reconstitute all of my WMD program and maybe I wouldn’t be around but Uday or Qusay,” the sadistic bastards who were his sons would be able to govern on his behalf.
“It was right thing to do. I appreciate your service for our country. I’m sorry for what you went through but it was the right thing to remove Saddam Hussein from power. The United States government and the United States military was right to do so. We should be proud of what we were able to do in Iraq and we should be sorry that we left them alone, because when we left them, things deteriorated, the same as they would have deteriorated if in 1955 Dwight Eisenhower had said, ‘You know what? We’ve had this horrible civil war in Korea—let’s wash our hands of it and go home.’ The world could have looked a lot different had we done so. If in 1950 we said, ‘You know we’ve been in Europe for five years, we defeated the Nazis, but you know what, let’s go home.’
“We should have stayed there and remained there like the Iraqis wanted us to. We would not have seen the rise if ISIS, would not have seen the displacement of millions of people in the country and we would not have seen the death of hundreds of thousands of people simply because they believed in Jesus Christ or were [inaudible] or were Shia.
“So I’m sorry, we have a fundamental disagreement on that. I appreciate your service, but I’m not gonna apologize for our government having done the right thing by removing Saddam Hussein from power.”