Jonathan Powers remembers well President Bush’s infamous speech four years ago today in front of the “Mission Accomplished” banner on the USS Abraham Lincoln.
At the time, Powers was a captain in the 1st Armored Division and was preparing for a deployment to Baghdad. “I was a believer,” he told me during a brief conversation Monday. “I thought we were going there to defend a nation. I thought we were going there to free an oppressed people. And we had that opportunity in the summer in 2003. We had Baghdad secured. We drove around the streets without doors on our Humvees. We ate dinners in Iraqi homes.
“But because of the failure in the administration to plan for the reconstruction, that is when things began to fall apart.”