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To fund or not to fund, that is the question
Sorry, a little play on Shakespeare there.
Now that our nation has mourned the senseless murder of college students and viewed the last testimony of the murderer (I’m not sure why we are calling him a shooter, he is a killer,) we can refocus on Iraq and the ongoing fight between the White House and Congress about money for the troops.
How about a large drink from the truth hose?
• The soldiers will not begin to run out of money until July.
• The war in Iraq is going into its fifth year.
• There is a surge happening, which is having some success.
• There is a presidential campaign in full swing, with the possibility that candidates may spend up to $1 billion.
The problem with all of these facts is that they are in competition with each other. The length of the war is fighting with the initial success of the “surge,” … all while we’re having issues about success, failures, wins and losses we have put the Joint Security Stations — about 100 large police stations manned by U.S. and Iraq forces all over Bagdahd, a city the size of Los Angeles.
We just saw 170 plus Iraqi citizens killed and more wounded by multiple car bombs. Before that happened, an al Qaeda suicide bomber killed eight people inside Iraqi parliament building, which is in Baghdad’s Green Zone. Oh, and Sadr (who is nowhere to be found) has just pulled his six cabinet posts from the Malaki government.
Meanwhile, presidential elections are in conflict with everything. Every sentence, look, speech or family issue is scrutinized and discussed. We know we have candidates who have been married three times, have magical underwear or can accumulate more money than a small country — but we do not know very much on how they will fight or lead us in this war.
Republicans hold no one accountable; in fact they are rewarded for massive failure after massive failure with medals of freedom. Once the Democrats got some power, they decided to treat us to political theater. It seems that both sides have forgotten that we have soldiers in combat who need political leaders in both parties to actually lead.
As Afghanistan and Iraq unbelievably enter their fifth years of fighting — despite brilliant victories by our military in both places — we find ourselves listening to our politicians saying that we are safer than we were before 9/11, and to “just trust us and it will all work out.”
All this noise while others say, “Stop now and come home.”
How about we actually change the way we fight, unleash our soldiers, allow our spies to do their dangerous and critical work, stop treating American citizens like they are from Zimbabwe, give money to the troops while they are fighting and hold those who have created this mess accountable for their miserable performance.
We are in a war; we all must all be in this, not just our brave soldiers. And, I mean YOU. Volunteer, visit your town hall, go to your police and fire stations, go to your EMS and ask what they need, give blood, write to a soldier, visit a veteran’s shelter, or visit a homeless veteran’s shelter (don’t forget to ask yourself why you’re there.)
We are the greatest nation in the world … how about we act like it?
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Colonel David Hunt has over 29 years of military experience, including extensive operational experience in Special Operations, Counter Terrorism and Intelligence Operations. Click over to buy a copy of his most recent book, "On the Hunt." You can read his complete bio here.