Today marks the 2nd anniversary of the 'decapitation strike' that ousted the regime of Saddam Hussein, a brutal tyrant who kept 26 million people in shackles. The Iraqi people are inherently better off now, but that simple fact does not shield the cold truth: at least 17,000 Iraqi civilians dead and 1,513 of our soldiers killed since it all started. It is incredible how the justification has changed so much in that time. But no matter what end we have reached, that does not excuse the means we used to get there. We are over six weeks past the historic elections, in which about 8 million people braved the insurgent threats and voted. There is no downplaying that. Yet we still occupy their country, and we remain sitting ducks. This is a tragedy we all started, but I hope it is one that can be salvaged through time. In that, a lasting good can come of it, and our GIs can return to their homes and families with honor.