SUBMITTED BY LAWRENCE RAFFERTY, GUEST BLOGGER
I had a very peaceful Sunday afternoon watching my beloved Bears take it on the chin against their biggest rival, the Green Bay Packers. It was sadly peaceful until I read a story that quoted Sen. Lindsey Graham on Meet the Press as stating that he wanted the United States to maintain permanent military bases in Afghanistan even after all NATO forces are transitioned out by the year 2014. I thought the Bears had done enough to tie my stomach in knots, but Lindsay Graham’s statements forced me to find the last remaining antacid in the house!
I have a son who is currently serving in Afghanistan with the Marines, and the thought of anyone else’s son or daughter serving on American bases in Afghanistan after 2014 is just scary. To be sure that I heard the story correctly, I went online and found the following quote from Senator Graham in response to a question from NBC’s David Gregory: “DAVID GREGORY: But that’s important. You believe a permanent U.S. Military presence in Afghanistan is required in order to head off a potential failed state in the future? SENATOR GRAHAM: I think it would be enormously beneficial to the region, as well as Afghanistan. We’ve had air bases all over the world. A couple of air bases in Afghanistan would allow the Afghan Security Forces an edge against the Taliban in perpetuity. It would be a signal to Pakistan that the Taliban are never gonna come back in Afghanistan. They could change their behavior.”http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/40871803/ns/meet_the_press-transcripts
I have a radical idea for Senator Graham and any other politician in Washington who agrees with him. Why don’t we listen to the Afghan people who want us out now and save the Billions that would be wasted by building and staffing permanent military bases in Afghanistan, and use that money to actually do some good for our country and our economy? The Afghan war is already our longest war so why should we continue to drag it out beyond 2014? What do we get out of it or I suspect I should ask, what does corporate America get out of a perpetual presence in a country that does not want us there? Shouldn’t Senator Graham be more concerned about getting some judicial nominees approved to relieve the judicial vacancy crisis here at home? I realize those are a lot of questions and it is late on a Sunday evening, but I’m just asking.