Saturday, July 10, 2010

Clint Didier Shoots Himself In The Foot

Even though I remain undecided as to just who I would like to see win the nomination to face off against Patty Murray in the general election, It is with great sadness that I have to say Clint Didier’s name has fallen completely off of the list.

I was initially impressed with Clint, especially when he approached me outside of the Hilton the evening of the Lincoln Day dinner to thank me for serving in Viet Nam, having seen my Viet Nam Veterans cap I often wear.

Although undecided, I have been leaning towards him, in spite of him previously saying on his twitter page, “Just finished meeting with Ron Paul. What an inspirational leader! Makes me want to fight harder for Liberty!”

The looniness of Ron Paul is well known and seeing Didier describe him as an “inspirational leader” disturbed me immensely, but I continued to give Clint the benefit of doubt.

I can no longer hold that benefit of doubt as Clint has now come forward repeating Ron Paul’s claims of “Afghanistan is not a war, but a conflict” and “we should never have gone in there without a formal declaration of war.”

Audio of KUOW’s “The Conversation” with Ross Reynolds interview with Clint Didier HERE

Just as wrong as Ron Paul remains to be over this, since Congress overwhelmingly authorized going after the terrorists in Afghanistan, in the shadow of the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks that murdered nearly 3,000 innocent civilians and considering that groups like Al Qaeda and other radical Jihadists had been steadily attacking American interests for over two decades at the time, Didier is way off base as well, in my estimation.

We often hear Ron Paul worshippers proclaim him to be heir apparent to the legacy of Ronald Reagan. They cite Reagan’s withdrawing from Lebanon after over 200 Marines were lost in a terrorist attack there, but they ignore Reagan’s own words of,

“In the profound sadness that fell over the whole country in the aftermath of the Beirut bombing, I had to decide what to do next in Lebanon. Not surprisingly, there was new pressure in Congress to leave that country. Although I did my best to explain to the American people why our troops were there, I knew many still didn't understand it. I believed in - and still believe in - the policy and decisions that originally sent the marines to Lebanon.”

Ronald Reagan: LEBANON, BEIRUT AND GRENADA

Didier brings up Paul’s notion of using “Letters of Marque and Reprisal” as viable alternative, ignoring that every other nation banned them in the mid-1800’s and that we are signatories to the Geneva Conventions, that forbids the use of mercenaries in warfare by nations.

Didier says in this regard, “So we put a bounty on their head through letters of marque and reprisal” adding it should be “One Billion Dollars.”

How disconnected from reality can he and Ron Paul be? Money isn’t what radical Jihadists are after. They are religious zealots misguided by their misinterpretation of the Qu’Ran and the false belief that God is on their side in this.

Last I recall hearing there has been a $50 Million bounty on Bin Laden with no takers that can get close enough to him.

Then again, since he says, “put a bounty on their head,” is proposing that for each one?

As a Viet Nam veteran, I remember well as congress pulled the plug on us, after tying out hands for so many years with ridiculous “rules of engagement” and losing over 58,000 of my fellow Veterans and we abandoned that struggling ally to fall under the darkness of communism for far too many years.

Didier and Paul, perhaps without even realizing it, are advocating just such a repeat scenario.

We have lost well over 1,000 of our Troops in Afghanistan and many more in Iraq, Troops who went off to war to protect our freedoms and fight to free people in a foreign land. Walking away and leaving the job unfinished once again would totally invalidate their sacrifices, as was ours by not finishing the job in Viet Nam.

Didier and Paul think it reprehensible that we did not formally declare war, ignoring the congressional vote authorizing the war, but abandoning friends in need to their fate of oppression seems not to bother them.

Another quote from Ronald Reagan, from a July 1975 Reason Magazine Interview,
“Once you are going to commit yourself to a combat role and you’re going to ask young men to fight and die for your country, then you have a moral obligation as a nation to throw the full resources of the nation behind them and to win that war as quickly as possible and get it over with…”

Sorry Clint, I still admire your football career, your devotion to your community and appreciate your shaking my hand to thank me for serving, but I cannot get behind any candidate that falls into league with Ron Paul or can treat the sacrifices of our Troops so cavalierly.

2 comments:

Nick Rowe said...

The appeal of Ron Paul eludes me. There are some legitimate (but seemingly weird) libertarian views, but Ron Paul is a "Best of" compilation. He isn't inspirational, IMO, he's a nutcase.

Being a libertarian is tough. You basically have to plead your case of government mischief amidst a vast majority of people who either benefit from that mischief, think the criticism is petulant, or are ambivalent.

As this FAQ on the Constitution points out, we have engaged in warlike conflicts by presidential order, joint agreement, and formal declaration.

The issue with Paul probably extends to the existence of our large standing army which violates the Constitution. It would or should take a declaration of war to raise a standing army (but only for two years). The world has changed since the founding and the Constitution should have changed with it. But when you look at an average citizen and say, "Our large standing Army and our Air Force is illegal," they immediately dismiss you as insane. They are confusing their feeling that we NEED a large standing army and an air force with what the Constitution says and the proper means to achieve them.

Politics is largely pragmatism and I learned from too many bad experiences that being right isn't enough. And in Ron Paul's case, he is often wrong.

Regarding Vietnam, I thank you for your service. The US won every major battle we fought there. The Viet Cong had been destroyed and, at the end of our involvement, there were no NVA troops between us and Hanoi. We didn't lose; we walked away from victory.

I don't want to see the same thing happen with Iraq and Afghanistan. Our enemies have learned that they cannot defeat us on the battlefield, but their most powerful weapons are:

1) Patience
2) the impatience of the American people
3) the liberal Mainstream Media
4 the political opportunists elected to Congress

Lew Waters said...

You are right, Nick.

Often times, those who are opposed to our Military cite what they label as Eisenhower's "Military Industrial Speech," ignoring most of what else h said in this, his farewell speech to the nation as he prepared to turn the reins over to Kennedy.

He said, "A vital element in keeping the peace is our military establishment. Our arms must be mighty, ready for instant action, so that no potential aggressor may be tempted to risk his own destruction."

"Our military organization today bears little relation to that known by any of my predecessors in peacetime, or indeed by the fighting men of World War II or Korea."

"Until the latest of our world conflicts, the United States had no armaments industry. American makers of plowshares could, with time and as required, make swords as well. But now we can no longer risk emergency improvisation of national defense; we have been compelled to create a permanent armaments industry of vast proportions. Added to this, three and a half million men and women are directly engaged in the defense establishment. We annually spend on military security more than the net income of all United States corporations."

We must stop turning away from victories.