SF soldier's death was tragic and unnecessary

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By Steven T. Jones
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Staff Sgt. David H. Gutierrez was killed on Christmas Day by an IED near Kandahar Air Base.

The flags at the State Capitol are flying at half-staff to honor Sgt. David H. Gutierrez, a soldier from San Francisco who was killed in Afghanistan on Christmas Day. Obviously, the death of this 35-year-old father of three by an improvised explosive device is sad and tragic, but it’s a dangerous fantasy to cast his life as the price we must pay for freedom and security.

“David was committed to the safety and protection of his fellow Americans and we are forever grateful for his service. We join all Californians in honoring David's sacrifice and we send our thoughts and prayers to his family, friends and fellow soldiers,” Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger wrote in a public statement.

It may be true that Gutierrez had noble intentions, but this was also a senseless and unnecessary death, one of what will be an increasing number of dead American soldiers caused by President Obama’s escalation of the war in Afghanistan. And the more we accept the notion that this is a necessary and heroic effort to protect Americans, the higher the death toll will rise and longer this so-called “War on Terror” will drag on.