How Long Can We Be On The Attack and Does It Make Us Safer?
by James Glaser
In the last three years George Bush has attacked Afghanistan and Iraq. He has sent troops to the Republic of Georgia, Columbia, the Philippines, Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan, Turkey (but they wouldn't let us stay) Kazakhstan and Pakistan.
Troops to all of these countries, plus we have troops it is reported, in another hundred and some countries. All of this adds up to hundreds of thousands of American men and women in uniform, carrying guns in foreign lands, and costing us hundreds of billions of dollars.
What happens when George Bush says he wants to attack another country? We have all listened to him talk about the evil in Iran and North Korea. He has said some nasty things about Syria and did you know we have troops in Israel? We most likely have troops in countries that are a National Security Secret, so we don't know about them.
More National Guard and Reserve troops will have to be called up by this spring if we want to bring some of the troops in Iraq home. What happens if a real war breaks out and we don't have any Reserves left to call up? How thin can George Bush stretch our defense?
There has been talk about something called Homeland Security, but with everything going on overseas it has been kind of forgotten. We still have open borders that millions of illegal aliens can cross at will and have. Our ports are open to anything coming in because we don't have the manpower needed nor the money it will cost to close these potential threats to our security.
We know what we have to do to make our country safer, we just don't have a leadership that thinks that is important enough to make it a priority. Color coded warnings are about as far as they want to go right now.
I have read about the families of those serving in uniform forming groups to put pressure on the government to bring our troops home. Many of those serving in Iraq still have no idea of when they will be coming home. The day I landed in Vietnam, I knew the day I would be coming back if I wasn't killed or seriously wounded before.
Right now the Army is studying the high suicide rate among US Soldiers in Iraq. The stress of "not knowing" how long you will be in combat can kill you. Washington told us several weeks ago that all personnel in Iraq knew when they would be rotated back home. Yesterday I asked the mother of a Soldier serving in Iraq when her son would be back. She said that she had just talked to him and asked that question and he had no idea of when.
President Bush has gotten us in a real mess. We don't have the troops to expand this war even if we wanted and we could have some real hard times if war breaks out in Korea. What would happen if one of our allies really needed us? Sorry, we don't have anyone right now that can help you.
Reserves are just that. Reserve troops are held back and used when a war gets too bad for our full time Army. We had to use National Guard troops and Reserves in Iraq because our troop strength was too low to just use active duty troops. Even with using these extra troops we don't have enough troops to hold and occupy Iraq now.
Sir Jeremy Greenstock, Britain's top official in Iraq has said, "I don't believe having open borders, or ammunition dumps around the country open to the world, helps in damping down on violence in Iraqi territory. These gaps need to be plugged. I have asked the British end to start pressing the Americans on this."
We don't have enough troops to guard the ammunition dumps around Iraq left by Saddam Hussein's forces and anyone wanting to attack our troops can walk in and take what they need. Washington keeps talking about terrorists from all over the world coming to Iraq to join in on these attacks. We don't have enough troops to stop them from coming in.
Don't kid yourself, every one that ever wanted to come after us knows how thin are defenses are right now and if terrorists were the threat that President Bush claims they are, we would be getting hit from every side. It is hard to get a group of smart young men together to make a suicide attack on any country. Washington wants us to believe that there are more attacks in the pipeline right now.
The September 11th attack took years of planing and recruitment. Men like Mohammed Atta don't grow on trees and it will be a long time before another attack can be coordinated if one like that ever can again. Everything went right for the terrorists and everything went wrong for us. Hopefully we learned from our mistakes.
George Bush can continue to attack and spread fear and dread in the American people, but he is also recruiting more people for the terrorists. If you watch the numbers we are killing hundreds of innocent people in Afghanistan and Iraq for every terrorist we kill or capture. With each innocent death we are making more terrorist sympathizers.
Some day we will have to pay attention here at home. George Bush is losing this war and making more terrorists. We don't have the population to occupy the whole world, so we better stop killing those people that have a real potential to be our friends.
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