In the second presidential debate, Senator Barack Obama swung back at McCain by referencing the song he sang, "Bomb, bomb, bomb Iran," and where he said of McCain that he “called for the annihilation of North Korea.” Obama stated in the next breath, “This is the person who, after we hadn't even finished Afghanistan, where he said, "Next up, Baghdad." As all over the map during this campaign in recent weeks, McCain surely wants to be all over the map in the Middle East going from war-to-war.
In a prior piece I also mentioned where Governor Sarah Palin stated to Charlie Gibson, “perhaps so” concerning any military force against Russia. I explained in that piece the sheer lunacy of her desire to go to war with Russia.
Getting back to Iran, according to the McCain/Palin web site, one will read, “Mr. McCain charged that Mr. Obama’s prescription for more diplomacy with Iran was misguided and insufficient, and that his proposal to begin withdrawing troops from Iraq would endanger Israel.” He stated that at an AIPAC (American Israeli Public Affairs Committee) meeting back in April.
Our new fiscal reality must come down to what Senator John Kerry stated during the 2004 presidential campaign that a “President should use our military because he has to and not because he wants to” and it is clearly evident that McCain wants to.
Time-after-time, Senator Barack Obama has brought up the fact that we the taxpayers are spending $10 billion a month to fund the Iraq War. Again, Obama rightfully pointed out that the war in Iraq is, “also put an enormous strain on our budget. We've spent, so far, close to $700 billion and if we continue on the path that we're on, as Sen. McCain is suggesting, it's going to go well over $1 trillion.” At this point such huge numbers are hard to understand and often leaves one feeling numb, but we must pay attention to these huge numbers in order to fully understand how we must go forward as a nation.
Considering the billions-upon-billions of dollars that we the taxpayer have funded for the bailout of Wall Street: Less war and more diplomatic talks is the prudent course of action considering we are basically broke as a nation.
To prove the above assertion correct, one will read where we as a nation will be forced to cut military spending. According to McClatchy, “In the fiscal year that just ended, the U.S. spent $694.2 billion on defense, up 52 percent from the 2000 defense budget in constant dollars.”
As they reported due to an aging baby-boom generation, the amount we have spent on the wars in both Iraq and Afghanistan some tough decisions must be made by our nation’s legislators and the next president to “reassess how much the military can do.”
I still remember back during the debates between George W. Bush and Al Gore, Bush said that the purpose of the military is not to nation build and what has happened in Iraq? We are nation building.
In fact in the debate held on October 11th, 2000 this is what candidate Bush had to say, "I don’t think our troops ought to be used for what’s called nation-building. I think our troops ought to be used to fight and win war.” So, what happened, President Bush and why didn’t McCain hold him to this since he has served in the military? Five years later and many billions of dollars as well, we are stuck in a quagmire with no end in sight. This is exactly where we need a change in leadership come November 4th and where Barack Obama is right.
While many are feeling such hardships in this nation given the current fiscal crisis, I want to point out that we have spent over $500 million dollars to build an embassy in Iraq also known as the Baghdad Palace. In the piece I wrote of it, I also included pictures of it. As many are being foreclosed on, please take a look at this behemoth which is larger than the Vatican. That was your tax dollars at work.
McCain has often said we must have victory when it comes to the war in Iraq as well as the war on terrorism, but that may not be possible when one reads, "How the U.S. government funds its military answers the question of: How committed it is to fighting these kinds of war?" said James Quinlivan, a senior military analyst and mathematician at the RAND Corporation."
In the vice presidential debate, Palin referenced that any troop withdrawal would send up a white flag, but when a nation cannot monetarily afford to continue this war that is the new reality we must all face as a nation. This is where we need a shift in our foreign policy and how we deal with the rest of the world. I have always said a country that is economically solvent is a strong country that is at least able to defend itself. With McCain it will be more of the same.
I would say this is yet another fallout to deregulation on Wall Street where greedy CEOs have put our country at risk and our country last. Due to McCain’s actions in the past where he promoted deregulation, it appears we cannot keep up with our current military spending. Was he indeed putting country first when he allowed these CEOs to run rampant? Now it seems we cannot even afford a military force.
I think an honest confrontation should occur between McCain and Gen. George Casey, the Army chief of staff who stated, "How much are you prepared to spend on that Army?"