Letter: Foreign policy shortsighted

H.L. Mencken stated: “The notion that a radical is one who hates his country is naive and usually idiotic. He is, more likely, one who likes his country more than the rest of us and is thus more disturbed than the rest of us when he sees it debauched. He is not a bad citizen turning to crime; he is a good citizen driven to despair.”

We as Americans are not forced to give allegiance simply because government has authority. We only owe loyalty to the government to the extent that it deserves it. Teddy Roosevelt spoke: “It is unpatriotic not to tell the truth.”

The fact remains the neo-conservatives led America into a purely elective war using doctrine that was condemned at Nuremberg. This put soldiers in harm’s way for nonexistent WMDs. The war is not about liberating the people of Iraq, because it is currently being run like a police state by the United States. I respect the sacrifice the military is asked to give and I think they deserve respect – more respect than they are getting from the current administration. The neo-conservatives have cut veterans’ benefits, increased the time before the injured can get in VA hospitals, increased co-pays for treatment and denied National Guardsmen and reservists the same benefits as enlisted soldiers (but that doesn’t stop Bush from sending them to fight and die), sent soldiers to fight with defective chemical weapon prevention equipment, given inadequate/no body armor and sent them to Iraq with a lack of sufficiently armored Humvees.

The idea that anybody who does not ascribe to Bush’s adherence to the Mike Tyson Book of International Diplomacy is “anti-U.S.” is laughable. The critics of the war are against short-sighted, elective foreign policy based on incompetence and pro-corporate policies being paid for by taxpayer money and the blood of our countrymen.

Neil Parthun

senior in LAS