Homeless War Veterans
Regardless of where you stand on the Iraq War, there is no justifiable reason for disabled veterans who served their country with honor to be homeless. So shame on the United States government for letting even one veteran fall through the cracks.
Goodness! Did we not learn anything from Vietnam? Hmmm. Maybe not! After all, if we did, we wouldn’t be in the middle of such a hot mess. I mean, lets face it, poor decisions in the early days of the war by people like Donald Rumsfeld who have finally being shown the door has turned the early victory into a near defeat. Thus, it just confirms that the neocons in charge didn’t fully understand or know the enemy. If they did, we wouldn’t be where we are today in Iraq. Such a shame, because as Sun Tzu wrote a zillion years ago in The Art of War,
“if you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles. If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained you will also suffer a defeat. If you know neither the enemy nor yourself, you will succumb in every battle.”
With that, here’s hoping that after three years the Unites States government with its coalition (really just the British), has finally begun to understand the enemy. If not, we are in continued danger of loosing a lot more than Iraq.
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November 19, 2006 at 8:39 pm
The Pentagon is totally out of control. If the $500B figure you quote is valid, then we need a proper accounting of how all that is spent.
November 18, 2006 at 5:15 pm
Good Article. I am a resident of a Veteran’s Home. Your article addresses the tangible and intangible cost of going to war.
You make many good points in your article. I would like to supplement them with some information:
I am a 2 tour Vietnam Veteran who recently retired after 36 years of working in the Defense Industrial Complex on many of the weapons systems being used by our forces as we speak.
If you are interested in a view of the inside of the Pentagon procurement process from Vietnam to Iraq please check the posting at my blog entitled, “Odyssey of Armements”
The Pentagon is a giant, incredibly complex establishment,budgeted in excess of $500B per year. The Rumsfelds, the Adminisitrations and the Congressmen come and go but the real machinery of policy and procurement keeps grinding away, presenting the politicos who arrive with detail and alternatives slanted to perpetuate itself.
How can any newcomer, be he a President, a Congressman or even the Sec. Def. to be – Mr. Gates- understand such complexity, particulary if heretofore he has not had the clearance to get the full details?
Answer- he can’t. Therefor he accepts the alternatives provided by the career establishment that never goes away and he hopes he makes the right choices. Or he is influenced by a lobbyist or two representing companies in his district or special interest groups.
From a practical standpoint, policy and war decisions are made far below the levels of the talking heads who take the heat or the credit for the results.
This situation is unfortunate but it is ablsolute fact. Take it from one who has been to war and worked in the establishment.
This giant policy making and war machine will eventually come apart and have to be put back together to operate smaller, leaner and on less fuel. But that won’t happen unitil it hits a brick wall at high speed.
We will then have to run a Volkswagon instead of a Caddy and get along somehow. We better start practicing now and get off our high horse. Our golden aura in the world is beginning to dull from arrogance.