The Senate agreed to spend an additional $63 billion for military operations in Iraq and Afghanistan as lawmakers passed a massive bill that funds the Pentagon.
- Advertisement -The bill sailed through by a vote of 98-0
I was immediately reminded of a common sense observation by Thomas Paine:
"In reviewing the history of the English Government, its wars and its taxes, a bystander, not blinded by prejudice nor warped by interest, would declare that taxes were not raised to carry on wars, but that wars were raised to carry on taxes."
Interestingly enough, that doesn't sound much different than what we experience today!
There are only a few politicians that are truly opposed to war. Some people are amazed or even angry when I state my position; that war is not the fault of just Bush and the Republican Party, but the Democratic Party as well; they are equally responsible for starting, fueling, and funding the war machine.
If my memory hasn't failed yet, it wasn't just the Republican Party that got us into this horrible mess. The Democrats voted for it as well, promoted it as a necessity, and even bombed Iraq on a regular basis throughout the 1990s; all the while aggressively supporting UN sanctions that resulted in over one million innocents dead.
Not only did both parties authorize the invasion en masse, they continue to join together to overwhelmingly approve billions more dollars to continue the killing.
So, even though Bush will someday leave office and cease being a "war president," we must start facing the fact that it's not just him or his neo-conned Republican party that are guilty of war crimes; it's the American political machine, fronted by both the Republicans and Democrats, that is completely addicted to the power and profits of warfare. It's the American political machine that we must resist.
The only way to improve America's image is to end our wars immediately. We must also bring home all our troops, not only from Iraq and Afghanistan, but also from the more than 100 other countries where the U.S. government interferes with its so-called military presence. Of course, once we achieve this, those Americans who would nonetheless wish to leave their families and jobs to help oppressed people overseas would still be free to do so.
But, such a "withdrawal" will never happen as long as the Republican and Democratic parties are ruling over us.
Another 98-0 vote should make that quite obvious.
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