A PROGRESSIVE VOICE FROM THE LLANO ESTACADO

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

GOP Won't Learn From War Mistakes


It is now ten years after the ridiculous invasion and occupation of Iraq. Over 4,000 Americans were killed and many more thousands wounded (not to mention the untold numbers of innocent Iraqis killed, wounded, or driven out of their country). In addition, the war created about $1.6 trillion in debt (which could balloon to $6 trillion in coming years), because Bush/Cheney decided the war could be fought without paying for it.

Was it worth it? Are we safer because we invaded and occupied Iraq? The American people don't think so (and neither do I). And that opinion is verified by two recent polls. The YouGov Poll (done on March 14th and 15th of 1,000 nationwide adults -- with a 3.4 point margin of error) shows that 54% of Americans now believe the Iraq War was not worth fighting. The ABC News/Washington Post Poll (conducted on March 7th through 10th of 1,001nationwide adults -- with a margin of error of 3.5 points) shows an even larger percent (58%) believe the war was not justified. And that ABC/WP poll shows that 56% of Americans also don't think the Afghan War was worth fighting.

Now a reasonable person would conclude that Americans are tired of foreign wars. They want what little money we have to be spent to rebuild this country -- a country that is still reeling from the Bush recession that has cost millions of jobs. But the Republicans can't seem to see that. They want to entangle the United States in more foreign wars -- wars that have the same propensity for a never-ending involvement. The neocons in the GOP are now ready to either bomb or invade Iran. And at least one Republican senator wants to invade Syria.

Senator Lindsay Graham (R-South Carolina) said yesterday that he wants the United States to send ground troops into Syria. His excuse is that they are needed there to secure weapons of mass destruction, and keep those weapons (if they exist) from falling into the hands of "extremists". What he doesn't seem to realize is that sending troops into another country to seize property, without that country's permission, is an ACT OF WAR.

If another country sent troops into the United States to seize property (regardless of what that property was), we would consider it an act of war and we would justifiably attack those soldiers. Could anyone expect the Syrian government to do anything less? And when the first bullets start to fly, we will be in another war. Even worse, the Syrian government has a powerful ally that has been supporting them in their civil war (and that's what that conflict is). What would Russia do if we invaded Syria? Frankly, invading Syria sounds like a great way to provoke an international crisis!

I don't think Senator Graham has thought this through. And he has also not bothered to tell us how he thinks we should pay for this new war. He and his fellow Republicans are busy trying to cut the budget and lower taxes for their rich friends -- and their sequestration cuts actually cut military funds. Now he wants to start a new war, and evidently like Bush/Cheney, he wants to do it on credit. Wouldn't this just balloon the deficit and debt they claim to be so worried about?

The GOP never seems to learn from their past mistakes -- either with ridiculous and unnecessary wars or with the country's economy. Returning them to power would be a disaster for this country.


1 comment:

  1. Why does the GOP still think that a war helps to grow our economy? War is a temporary infusion of money from the government for a specific purpose and for a specific time. We are not manufacturing anything that adds value, we are using up resources we could use in many other ways and leaving our machines and treasure in a foreign country when we pull-out. And when the war is over those who were employed making tanks and machine guns and uniforms and bombs will be looking for another job with skills that are not needed in a peace-time economy. War is a losing proposition for everyone except the Military Industrial Complex.

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