Our senior United States Senator Mitch McConnell spoke to voters in Pike County on Monday night. Despite the fact that support for the war in Iraq and for President Bush has been steadily eroding, Senator McConnell doesn’t waver in his opinion that the US is on the right track. He is aware that most American's don't agree with him, but does he care? McConnell views the war as "an important conflict being fought for the right reasons." According to the senator: "On the whole, it's been a very successful enterprise."
"Enterprise" is indeed the right word to apply to the reasons for and consequences of this ongoing war. The battle has been a major boon to oil interests and defense contractors. In the meantime, the war on terror has done more to recruit new terrorists than any previous action. We cannot continue to produce enemies faster than we can kill them. We cannot afford to throw a new generation of young people into a war fast becoming a repeat of Vietnam. Nor can we afford to have our national debt pushed to record highs, taking much-needed dollars away from programs that would truly make America stronger.
McConnell is right in saying that it all began on September 11, 2001. In the aftermath of September 11, a wounded nation placed faith in the government to protect and defend the citizenry. But our faith has been misplaced in trusting this
government. The al Qaeda attack was rightly viewed as an act of war. But although the Sept. 11 commission reported in 2004 that it had found no "collaborative relationship" between Iraq and al Qaeda, McConnell explicitly linked the war in Iraq to the terrorist attacks on America.
Although he admitted that weapons of mass destruction have not been found in Iraq, McConnell insisted, "We know they used to have them - in fact, he [Saddam Hussein] used them on his own people."
McConnell, who has visited Afghanistan three times, and Iraq twice, said he has often heard soldiers complain that the media does not report all the good things they are doing, instead focusing on the more than 1,800 American soldiers and countless Iraqi citizens killed in the conflict.
"In 18 of the 22 provinces (in Iraq), life is much, much better," McConnell said. He also insisted that the accusations of abuse in Guantanamo Bay were inflated. He maintains that prisoners there are living more comfortably than American soldiers in war zones. According to McConnell America "is not involved in a systemic mistreatment of prisoners."
I would like to believe him. Unfortunately, the record of lies and misrepresentations the Washington establishment has built makes belief impossible. All I can do is remind others and myself that McConnell is the second ranking Republican in the senate and well known for his support of the party. His credibility is indelibly stained by their lies.