AN OPEN LETTER TO THE AMERICAN PRESIDENT:
To HONOR someone means more than giving lipservice at some podium where one has the wherewithall to lie with impunity. To truly honor someone or some thing, means that we devote a certain measure of substance to back up the meaningless words and drivel that seem to roll off politician's lips these days like grease off fried chicken.
First of all, if you are a politician or president, and you say you HONOR our troops, then there are certainties that should accompany such a proposition:
#1 You should properly fund them. Ensure they have the proper vehicles, and enough vehicles. Ensure they have the proper protective equipment, and enough of it. Ensure that they have the best weapon systems, and enough ammunition, and the right ammunition. Soldiers are SCREAMING that the M-4 is not the right weapon system to use in Afghanistan. The 111th Congress should be ashamed for not providing any of the above in enough quantity or quality to provide security for American forces stationed abroad.
#2 You DO NOT set a timetable for withdrawl of forces and then broadcast to the enemy when that withdrawl will occur. This unnecessarily exposes American forces to future attacks when the enemy will know that we have drawn down our forces. The American president, Barak Hussein Obama, unnecessarily put American forces in harm's way when he announced such a timetable in Afghanistan.
#3 Cancelling defense projects in order to fund failed domestic entitlement programs that have never succeeded and will never succeed, is not how to HONOR our troops in the field. American fighting forces need the 155 Howitzer that was cancelled in Oklahoma, the F-22 Raptor that was cancelled, and the new individual weapon system that should have been fielded at the beginning of the 111th Congress that is STILL not yet in the field.
#4 American fighting forces are struggling under IMPOSSIBLE Rules of Engagement (ROE). Did we not learn anything from Vietnam? When Gen. Westmoreland initiated "Don't fire unless you're fired upon," and our soldiers had to helplessly sit and watch while the NVA set up ambushes that would kill American and South Vietnamese forces . . . Today, the same thing is happening in Afghanistan. American soldiers watch while the enemy sets up their rockets, reinforces their fighting positions, powerless to stop them UNTIL they begin firing at them. This American president is directly responsible and I hold him liable for every American soldier's death that was preventable.
#5 American veterans deserve to see their commander in chief at Arlington on Veteran's Day, placing a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. This sends the message to every single living American veteran that this government remembers their sacrifice and honors their commitment to God and Country. No president should ever abdicate that responsibility.
#6 Coddling the very terrorists that our soldiers are fighting against by naming the chief ADVOCATE for terrorists as the nation's top law enforcement officer, the attorney general, is a slap in the face of everyone fighting terrorism. Eric Holder should NEVER have been appointed attorney general as he would have to recuse himself from every single terrorist case at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.
#7 By appointomg Eric Shinseki, one of the most hated American generals and Army chiefs of staff under Bill Clinton. who adopted the ludicrous phrase "An Army of One," which flies in the face of everything every soldier was ever taught. . . to the post of Secretary of Veterans Affairs, clearly shows your disdain for the American veteran.
#8 By nominating Elana Kagan to the Supreme Court, who single-handedly got the ROTC kicked off the campus at Harvard, again indicates your hatred for the American military.
So, . . . to SAY you honor American veterans and our troops in the field, when your ACTIONS indicate the exact opposite is meaningless drivel. You, sir, should have stayed in bed.
Dan Denny, Major, USAR, (Ret)