Friday, February 23, 2007

Tough Questions

I am no expert on world affairs, but there are things that I read that just raise questions I cannot answer. I though I would share some of these with you here.

1. Why is it better that Americans die in Iraq than in the United States? Bush/Cheney says this all the time. Given that more Americans have died in Iraq than in the tragedy of 9/11, why is Iraq better?

2. Does the fact that we have not seen another 9/11-type disaster prove that Bush/Cheney’s policies are effective? How do we explain the lack of a 9/11 prior to Bush being elected? This sounds like selling whistles to keep wild elephants out of Salt Lake City. The fact that there are no elephants roaming the streets of Salt Lake City proves the effectiveness of the whistles. Does one thing have anything to do with the other?

3. Is it possible for Bush to lose the Iraq war? The British are withdrawing 1500 soldiers from Iraq, and Bush says this shows what we can do when areas of the country are pacified and turned over to the Iraqi forces. If the pullout of British troops results in chaos, however, the Bush administration will argue that this shows why we can’t withdraw from Iraq. He can’t lose.

4. Does anyone pay attention to what Iraqis say? Ahmed Abdullah, a 29 year-old Sunni casts doubt on the claim of a Sunni Iraqi women who says she was raped by two Shiite men, “I don’t believe that Iraqis will rape a woman. We don’t have such a culture. We might kill, behead or do torture, but rape—I don’t think so.” Well, that puts my mind to rest. I wouldn’t want to sacrifice American lives to save a culture that rapes. Beheading and torture, well, that’s much more American. At least if you watch “24.”

5. Are American soldiers really our “best and brightest?’ When I see how the government is continually lowering its recruiting standards to meet its goals, I wonder if many of our best and brightest actually avoid military service. I am not saying military folk are less bright, I am just asking if this phrase is anything more than silly rhetoric?

6. Is an all-volunteer military a good idea? If we had a draft and everyone had an equal chance of going to Iraq, I wonder if we would have ever gone to war in the first place. With an all-volunteer force we can abuse our soldiers and hide behind the phrase, “They knew what they were signing up for.” Bring back the draft. This would have the added benefit of easing our Mexican immigration problem as well. First, Mexicans could do the jobs that most Americans really don’t want to do—like fight in Iraq. Second illegal immigrants can replace illegal American emigrants who will slip into Canada to avoid the draft.

7. Would you have stayed on plane for 10 hours so Jet Blue avoid canceling your flight? I always try to sit in the exit row. I suspect I would have opened the emergency hatch and slid down the escape chute. I doubt I would have been alone.

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