John Boehner made another plea to repair the Department of Veterans Affairs yesterday, damning the agency because:
This isn’t run-of-the-mill incompetence. It is arrogance – arrogance that allows our veterans to be lied to, ignored, and, frankly, left to die.1
Boehner talks better than he acts. Like too many of the challenges facing Congress this one has lingered far too long and will continue to drag on after making a brief appearance for the Memorial Day holiday (see: Both Parties Agree: Veterans Are Useful Political Tools).
Many of our soldiers never survived to be mistreated by the VA. They never made it home. Instead, they died far away to protect a country run by people who use their political careers to undermine what generations of troops have sacrificed for.
Soldiers died for America, not politicians, their careers, or their ambitions
President Obama has a history of taking things away from Congress. At least for now the legislature still has the power to declare war. Are the people who can make the decision to put soldiers in harm’s way the same people who prove day after day that politics and their careers matter more than people or the fate of this nation? Consider:
1. Citizenship is an inconvenient technicality
We have heard it over and over and over again:
They are Americans in their heart, in their minds, in every single way but one: on paper. 2
You know who Obama is talking about. Some of these almost-Americans came here as kids, are now thirty years old, and are still depending on our government to make them legal because that feeling in their hearts of being American wasn’t quite strong enough to make them step up and get their papers. Should they serve in the military alongside real Americans carrying on a tradition of risking everything to protect this country? 20 Republicans turned traitor and joined Democrats who think so (see: Anti-Immigrant Sentiment is Another Democratic Lie).
2. Giving away is more important than growing
Could you explain to a soldier who died on D-Day that there is a chance we will have a socialist running for president because his strongest opponent has too many scandals dogging her? The post-World War II years were about growth, about prosperity, about securing a future with a blistering hot economy. Now it’s about how much we can skim from the top to prop up a bottom that political careers depend on. That’s not what America is about, but it is one of the things soldiers died to protect us from.
3. American deaths are less important than seizing the White House
An arrogant presidential candidate who seems to have a lot to hide just remarked that she is the person with the biggest interest in releasing emails at the center of an exploding scandal that menaces her run for the White House. Have no doubt that Hillary Clinton meant every word she said. That’s how our politicians view themselves and their aspirations, which is why those with something to lose from the Benghazi scandal are going to make sure we never find out what really happened. Political careers come first. Dead Americans can wait. They can wait a long time.
4. Politics means not stopping countries that would like to destroy us
Can you name two countries that should never even be close to a nuclear weapon? We let North Korea become a nuclear power. Iran comes next, thanks to our eagerness to negotiate with terrorists (see: Confidence in Government: 19 Ways We Lost It). The only country that is conflicted over where this John Kerry charade is going to end is the U.S.
After Iran’s Muslim-in-Chief confirmed what we can expect from his country by saying no to nuclear inspectors, our State Department explained how this new, unsurprising development would be handled:
Mm-hmm. Well, we’ve said we’re not going to negotiate in public before. We certainly aren’t going to start now and we certainly aren’t going to start responding to every comment by the supreme leader.3
There’s not much chance our troops will be stopping this one. If Kerry and Obama have their way, you had better keep your sunglasses handy.
5. Thousands of soldiers died in a war we gave up for a campaign promise
As soon as he was ensconced in the White House, Barack Obama set to making good on his promise to get out of Iraq. He offered our soldiers falsehoods, including this promise about VA Health Care:
You and your families have done your duty – now a grateful nation must do ours. That is why I am increasing the number of soldiers and Marines, so that we lessen the burden on those who are serving. And that is why I have committed to expanding our system of veterans health care to serve more patients, and to provide better care in more places.4
His platitudes about the sacrifices of Americans in uniform were an insult to our troops in light of the terrorist playground he created in Iraq and across the Middle East:
That is the most important lesson of all – for the consequences of war are dire, the sacrifices immeasurable.
You know because you have seen those sacrifices. You have lived them. And we all honor them.5
Obama made good on his Iraq withdrawal promise. His words about honor ring hollow, though, for the thousands of American soldiers who died in the conflict and can’t watch ISIS take over the country that cost them their lives.