Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Veterans for Obama

Last night's debate, Barack Obama demonstrated again how Barack Obama has the judgement and temperament to be our next Commander-in-Chief.

Obama provides this clear difference in Foreign Policy approach when he emphasizes the need to employ diplomacy, and to sit down and talk with not just our allies, but our enemies. McCain continually tries to pain Obama as naive and showing poor judgement for wanting to speak with problem nations like Iran or North Korea. McCain's position shows just how poor his judgement is, when even Republican Secretary of States Baker and Powell support Obama's policy.

Recently the five former Secretary of States gave the exact same recommendation, that Obama advocates, in a recent CNN Forum "The Next President: A World of Challenges".

AMANPOUR: But the question is, do you want to change the policy? And do you want to actually try to engage for strategic reasons?

BAKER: We ought to engage, yes.

AMANPOUR: To use them for help in...

POWELL: I think we're all saying yes.

BAKER: We're all saying you ought to engage, I think. I don't know. I haven't heard Henry. He may not.
In particular, Obama has demonstrated a much clearer support for our veterans, as opposed to John McCain. I find it hypocritical of John McCain to stand up in a debate and say how much he loves the veterans, and how they know he loves them, when his voting record shows completely the opposite.

In fact, the Iraqi and Afghanistan Veterans of American gave John McCain a D- on his voting record, while Senators Obama and Biden received a B. The Disabled Veterans of America give John McCain a 20% rating, while Senators Obama and Biden received an 80% rating.

It's easy to say you support the troops, but quite frankly talk is cheap.

The key difference was stark in the first debate, as Obama pointed out McCain's sunk-cost fallacy when it came to the fallen troops.
No U.S. soldier ever dies in vain because they're carrying out the missions of their commander in chief. And we honor all the service that they've provided. Our troops have performed brilliantly. The question is for the next president, are we making good judgments about how to keep America safe precisely because sending our military into battle is such an enormous step.
This was in response to McCain's story about why we need to continue to fight and continue to risk more soldier's lives, because otherwise it may invalidate the deaths of previous soldiers.

And I'll tell you, I had a town hall meeting in Wolfeboro, New Hampshire, and a woman stood up and she said, "Senator McCain, I want you to do me the honor of wearing a bracelet with my son's name on it."

He was 22 years old and he was killed in combat outside of Baghdad, Matthew Stanley, before Christmas last year. This was last August, a year ago. And I said, "I will -- I will wear his bracelet with honor."

And this was August, a year ago. And then she said, "But, Senator McCain, I want you to do everything -- promise me one thing, that you'll do everything in your power to make sure that my son's death was not in vain."

That means that that mission succeeds, just like those young people who re-enlisted in Baghdad, just like the mother I met at the airport the other day whose son was killed. And they all say to me that we don't want defeat.
Chris Matthews of "Hardball" commented on this
I thought John McCain made a terrible point tonight. He said if someone dies in battle, someone serving their country because they were ordered to do something in battle, out on a particular mission, you don‘t pick your missions, you don‘t pick your wars. When someone dies for their country they have done that, it‘s over. They have served their country. They are patriotic. They deserve forever to be remembered and honored. It‘s not a question of what happens later in that war or whether that battle was still going (ph) or not, or whether you should continue to fight.

By the definition John McCain gave us tonight, and it was a heinous definition, we must continue every war we every start. Every time we suffer a casualty, we must support that war indefinitely to achieve the initial objective set by general who may well be wrong. I think that‘s a very hard argument to make morally, to suggest that war must never end. It suggests that every war that‘s begun must continue indefinitely until it achieves the political or the military objectives set in the initial context. Context changed, sometimes wars have to end.

The Korean War ended. It was not dishonorable for General Eisenhower to come to Korea and end the war in 1953 that had begun in 1950, ending a war without final victory. There‘s nothing wrong with that, nothing dishonorable about it.

I leave it with a great video with Virginia Veterans explaining why they support Barack Obama.
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