You recently visited with wounded troops at Walter Reed. What were your impressions?
I was deeply impressed by them. Most I spoke to were young people, around 20 years old. And they were really very eloquent, very positive, very respectful. You have to be proud of the children we're turning out from looking at this group of people. For me, I would much rather hear from these guys than the people who are presenting the news on television on a daily basis.
Were you able to gauge the mood among the troops—have they lost a sense of mission?
These guys say, well, it's possible to win it. And I'll tell you one thing they said that was very remarkable: the increase in troops that has been recommended by the president, they say anybody who's over there knows the value of backup and we should be behind this. When you're out in that situation in danger, you want to know you've got backup. Only one guy said he wasn't going back to Iraq, and he had been wounded a couple times. But all the other guys wanted to go back. One young woman, a very attractive young woman, had her leg amputated. But she says she's going to find a way to get back into it. She just reupped and she said they would find something for her to do.
Do you think it's possible to win the Iraq War?
Here's what I think: this is a real war, extended beyond the borders of Iraq.
As in the more general war on terror?
The war on terror is real. People would have you believe it's not real. This is not Vietnam. This particular situation is not the same wherein we can walk away and just leave destruction behind us. No, we can't. Anyone who has paid attention to what [Iranian President] Ahmadinejad is saying, what all the mullahs are saying in this country and in England, and in all of the Arab world, this is serious—they're calling for the destruction of America and all democracy and that's what's going on. We could lose this war.