President Obama went on national television this past week (again) to announce to the world - and yes, America's enemies - his timetable for the withdrawal of US troops from the Afghanistan theatre of the Global War on Terror. Since then politicians and military leaders have gone before the cameras to declare their support for this plan. We have seen BHO do his usual post-announcement promotion tour to Ft Drum, with the troops used as props, and do tv interviews to impress us all with his brilliant insights as he gathers speed in his haste to remould America in his own image on the world stage. It should be noted, however, that not all observers have immediately offered an 'expert' opinion on this speech. A certain war correspondent/photographer/milkook/special- personal-adviser to military men in high places was abnormally reticent in sharing their opinions on BHO's speech, choosing to merely say:
Must study this quite a bit more before saying much. Would like to ask General Petraeus about it but hate to bother him while he's actually commanding forces in wars.
War on Terror News needed no such lengthy study to 'get' the clear message inherent in BHO's pronouncements, and had a column up on General Petraeus' public response to his boss' military strategy. I could provide links here to each of the above-mentioned reactions, but those are easily accessible with minimum research. Instead I want to focus here on the responses that have not been seen in the msm spotlight: those most affected by Obama's future goals for our troops. Active troops will not be able to publicly comment, but veterans can - and have - and so have the military families.
Mr and Mrs Obama will have you believe they "have your backs," when talking to, and of, our military and their families. Given what I hear, the families aren't buying it, and the veterans are more than a tad sceptical. To say the families are upset with POTUS' latest speech would be an understatement, and I am sharing their comments here, in full, with no editing for brevity, because it is my firm belief that their voices matter; they should be heard.
Following Obama's presentation the other night, I posted the transcript of his speech on War on Terror News.
Wasn't long before WOTN himself - a US Veteran - added his thoughts:
The Obama Administration is searching out Taliban to negotiate with, while withdrawing Troops, and while announcing that time, not victory determines the end of US efforts. This is not a "position of strength" but the most obvious position of weakness.
The "pressure" that was turning the tide in Afghanistan rested in the 30,000 Troop "surge" witch is being not only reversed, but reversed at a rate of 110%.
With 150,000 US Troops deployed in combat zones, and 3 wars (Iraq, Libya, and Afghanistan) not to mention the Piracy War in the Indian Ocean, the Obama Administration is cutting 49,000 Troops from the force. In short, Our Troops are stretched thinner now than they were in 2008.
The "tide of war" is ebbing, not because the tide of the Taliban has ebbed, but because this administration has no will to defeat the enemy. This Administration has in effect told the enemy when they can take back Afghanistan. This is not a failure of US Troops, but a failure of leadership, a failure of politicians.
But the "tide of war" is not ebbing. It is rising. The momentum for Freedom and for self-determination of nations, through democracy, is ebbing, as the strength of Islamists rises across the Middle East rises, in Turkey, in Yemen, in Somalia, in Egypt. This Administration has squandered the hard fought Victories, politically and verbally attacking allies, while undermining support for those that risk their lives against enemies.
As Obama spoke to the world, the world was listening, and it was not just the Americans who saw right through the empty platitudes. From one of my British veteran friends came this:
I am sure that will make the wives, husbands and relatives of all who have given the ultimate sacrifice in this conflict feel much better! why did they have to die? for what gain? brat knows i am all for defending what has to be defended or fought for at a cost, as long as it is justified! we have been there and done that! what is there to justify our presence there in the first place! what will the body count be when it is all over? (Parabusa)
Yes, Parabusa and WOTN have it exactly right, in my always humble opinion, and nobody needs to wonder why I love our veterans so! They always get right to the heart of any military matter, and when they talk, I listen. As I read the transcript of BHO's speech - you surely didn't think I would watch that performance live, did you? - I immediately thought of all our military currently deployed, their families, and those Gold Star Families whose loved ones have paid the ultimate sacrifice in this war (or whatever he now chooses to call it) about which the President can't even use the word "Victory."
Before BHO had even finished his pre-2012 election speech, couched in concern for our military, I saw a Gold Star Mom cry on a social networking site: My son died in vain!
Another Gold Star Mom, Silver Farr, (Proud Mother of Spc Clay Patrick Farr KIA - February 26, 2006), had this to say:
It was a very well written, well thought out, and well 'read' campaign speech in my opinion. It was an update, on the troop draw down which began back in 2010, and continues through, to the summer of 2012 (please forgive me if I've misread any dates. I've been asked for my reaction, not for a well thought out and factual opinion, and in the interest of being emotionally genuine, I am foregoing the verification of some facts and giving only my interpretation). Yes, it was nice that he acknowledged the Marines in some respects, and touched upon the sacrifices made by our Military Service Members. But it would have been nice, if he had mentioned the Generals who are actually 'running' the war. Of course he had to interject something about what we are doing in Libya, he mentioned that we have no troops on the ground there, but I personally know a Marine who says differently. Mr Obama frequently 'absolves' himself for those types of 'factual inaccuracies' in his speeches, by referring to them as 'rhetoric'. So OK, I suppose that to his way of thinking, if you call a 'lie' rhetoric, it is no longer a 'lie'.
All in All, after reading the transcript from this 'Campaign Speech', I would have been impressed, had it come from a person with a history of sincerity. Sadly, he had demonstrated by his past actions, that he will say whatever is necessary to achieve the 'goal of the moment'. I was moved to hear about his ideals about 'building' strength in America, benefiting out citizens, Etc. But then I remembered, that this was coming from the President who has increased our debit more than all of the other Presidents combined. I was heartened to see that he invoked 'God's' name at the end of his speech, but then I remembered that he wouldn't allow the National Day of Prayer event to take place at the White House, because he didn't want to 'offend' anyone.
So, to summarize ... It felt good, to read the speech. That is what the objective of the speech was. To give Voting Americans a good feeling. Yes, the speech writer accomplished that goal. Yes, I will celebrate the homecoming of each and every troop that makes it home. I only wish that my sweet son, could have been one of them. No, nothing that the President said about the 'Draw Down' was new news. It was merely a status update, crafted to appear as though our President himself, had 'improved upon' a Troop Draw Down that was already taking place. No ... he still will not get my vote in 2012.
It should be noted that many military families did not watch the speech. They actively avoided BHO's latest primetime ill-conceived 'oratory.' The comments ranged from: Didn't watch him....sick of it all....to: We elected not to listen to him last night. His bs just raises hubbys BP too much. This from the wife of one America's Wounded Warriors. Another Gold Star Mom said this: No words on this one. Didn't watch, read a good book instead. And my opinion on this one will cause the bp to go way over. Need to rest.
Of those military families - with loved ones in the sandbox right now - who did watch, or who read the transcript, the response was pretty scathing, and not quite the mindless adoration the Mouth-In-Chief was probably expecting.
From a military wife whose husband is 'somewhere out there,' at the pointy end of the spear:
I'm deeply disappointed in the President's purely political decision to use the military once again as a means to secure favor with the American people. He pays military families lip service, like he did after the Ft. Hood shootings, and doesn't listen to an officer unless they say what he wants to hear. No one is more tired of war than those who fight it. My husband is exhausted, I'm without him for too long, but Mr. Obama doesn't care about us. He doesn't even know that the only living Medal of Honor winner since Vietnam is SSG Giunta not Jared Monti, both fine men. Mr. Obama, Jared Monti is dead. Do your homework. The only thing that concerns this President is getting out of Afghanistan, and the consequences are for someone else to deal with. I'd rather he left the war to the Generals and played another round of golf.
I know this wife - as I know all who responded and are included here - well enough to know that her measured tones do not even come close to expressing her outrage at BHO's latest politically motivated use of our troops.
Here's another long-time military wife - and mother - who makes less effort to couch her reaction in niceties. She has just heard that her husband is about to deploy - again - (because BHO is 'bringing the troops home,' you understand) as her son in law is about to come home:
I am to the point where I feel like MY country has FIRST priority. I know we can send our military anywhere and they can kick ass-and end a bad situation for some third world country facing some horrible dictator. We do not need to prove that-its been done a million times over. I want our military home from Afghanistan for a great many reasons. I do not want them in a war situation losing their lives because Obama changed the ROE. I want them home protecting our southern borders from illegals infiltration and drug cartels that are linked up to al queda and taliban terrorists now. I want our military protecting us HERE at home, until such a time that we have a POTUS with a pair - who understands that in times of War, civilian casualties are avoided as much as possible, but sometimes the 'locals' are part of the problem because they harbor terrorists - its the life they know. I want the countries in the middle east to get their OWN crap together - however they see fit, because I do not want another stinking DIME of my taxes going towards fixing the infrastructure of some sand dune hole in the ground, or mud hut mountainside. I am actually LAUGHING at Obama, cause everyone KNOWS he is really bringing the military home for the election in 2012 -- first he 'thinks' in his arrogant blindness that the military will actually vote for him -- and secondly because he has had over 2 yrs to FIX the issue of military absentee voting and its STILL NOT fixed -- which means the majority of absentee military votes wont count in 2012. Mostly though, I think our military needs some time stateside to regroup, and repurpose the agenda and missions with stronger leaders at the helm. The current leaders are TOTAL FAILURES and disappointment. Our military deserves better-the best. Where is General Patton when you need one!
AND I ALSO THINK!.... It shows exactly what this so called POTUS REPRESENTS when he is in 'talks' for negotiation with the taliban-aka TERRORISTS. NEVER EVER EVER EVER compromise with a terrorist! THAT is what worries me when he says that about 10k troops give or take will be left behind in the 'stan, for Nnato support. HELL NO! Oh sitting ducks without strong air and ground support? ummm no.
Yet another military mom who has not one, but two kids over in the sandbox:
Ok Take the number 30,000, send home 10,000- I can do that. It is time for A'stan to stand on their feet. I also recently heard they are one inch from the whole place being bankrupt.
Work- work being done is to be cut by 1/3rd- 10,000 has to watch the backs of 10,000 so I guess since math isn't my strong suit work is actually cut by 2/3rds. Take the 10,000 we bring home and start watching our ins and outs- searching out illegals and deporting.
We will leave a presence in the Middle East forever I guess but we have to be more diligent here to keep them out- no more college etc for those Muslims. Muslim- they say there are good ones. That's nice, I am glad they aren't all bad. But they can't come here. That should be interesting to pull off. I guess no matter what I don't like the Dumbamma going against military recommendations. I also know we're running out of money fighting those dumb ass terrorists over there. I know we need to be fighting them over here.
What to do?
....heard President Odumma-I want all our troops home- gonna ever happen, I doubt it. Want my kids home- absolutely!!!!!! So we take 1/3rd working military away do we continue to work the other 2/3trd shorthanded or are they going to pull work from them? Or are we just gonna kill them and dazzle the public with lower numbers deployed? Also did anyone read A'Stan is on the very verge of bankruptcy ( yeah, I know we are close, too.) So you great military war buffs tell me this - what happens NO ONE can afford to have a war? If no one can afford a war then everyone goes home. No war. Beef up your borders. No one not a citizen allowed in for more than 60 days. What we cannot do is leave not enough to protect themselves until that country goes bankrupt and runs out of terror items to purchase and make and hurt our 2/3rds. We terror watch from within- we take Dumbamma's check book- we take care of our own first- we thin out illegals-we do something, maybe others will follow.
Did I mention how sharp our military wives/mothers are? Oh and another military wife raised another really good point:
Every Afghan who has risked his life to support the mission with our guys and gals will now have to rethink it. This is bad, bad, bad.....
But hey, BHO is determined the combat mission is over, and he can drawdown our troops. Maybe he is too busy doing tv interviews and making sure HE is in the news, and missed this news out of Afghanistan, just today:
70 Afghans Killed in Twin Explosions; Hospital & Bazaar
60 Dead, 120 Wounded in Afghan Hospital BlastAfghan officials say a suicide car bomber set off a huge blast Saturday at a hospital in eastern Afghanistan, killing at least 60 people.
The Afghan Health Ministry says the explosion in Logar province, about 40 kilometers from the capital, Kabul, wounded another 120 people. Women and children were among the casualties.
The Taliban has denied responsibility for the attack, saying the militant group does not target hospitals.
Oh really? Read the rest here.
Fact is, every single day, we read of terrorist scum killing and maiming their own children (and yes, I have another column on that very issue coming soon.)
Just as he declared the combat mission in Iraq was over, and made much ado about bringing our troops home, Obama knows that renaming heavy combat battalions as "Advise and Assist" and going before the cameras to remind voters he is keeping one of his campaign promises to bring our troops home, does NOT mean our troops are not dying - daily. I'm no military genius, but even I can figure out that when our troops are dying that smells like combat to me, not advise and assist.
Just about every week I get notices of more of our troops being killed in Iraq, and in Afghanistan our soldiers are dying on a daily basis, along with the innocent women and children civilians.
No, of course we cannot commit to a never-ending mission of any kind in Afghanistan or Iraq, but when the Commander In Chief, a civilian with no military knowledge at all, chooses to ignore advice from people who have spent years training and learning how to win wars, not many of us are fooled by his constant public relations tours, or prime-time television shows.
As I said to someone recently, when I make stupid decisions, nobody dies. When the CinC blithely disregards the military commanders - and makes what many see as stupid decisions - people DO die. And that is unconscionable.
There is an old saying: You can fool some of the people all of the time. Obama may think that this blatantly politically motivated decision will garner him votes, ensure his re-election in 2012.
Newsflash: The military families are not fooled for one nano-second. They have long memories, they are well-educated, and they also have very effective bs meters. They also know far more about military campaigns than Obama will EVER know. You will NOT get their votes. Too late he may realise how his decisions have directly impacted every precious military family in America.
THAT'S what I call a reality check!