02 February 2005

The State Of The Union

As interested in politics as I am, I watched the State of the Union very intently. It was pretty evident from the reactions of Congress, where who stands on what issues. But I think rather than get into the nuts and bolts of the particular plans outlined by the President, I'm going to bring up the emotional aspects of the gathering.
The question of are we doing the right thing in Iraq. Well, Afghanistan, Ukraine, the Palestinian Authority, and Iraq all had free elections within the past few months. All of these are major mile stones, two of which we had a direct hand in. Both Afghanistan and Iraq not only held elections, but allowed women to vote. And this was represented at the State of the Union by two female voters, one from Afghanistan and one from Iraq. But the single most emotional moment came when the President introduced the mother and father of a Marine killed in Fallujah. That in itself was an emotional moment, but the woman from Iraq turned around and thanked the mother with a great big tear-filled hug. If that don't tell you how Iraqis feel about us being there, I don't know what will. They want us there. They appreciate us being there. And like I said before, every vote cast on Sunday was a thank you to our troops.
That being said, it is time for our government to show our troops it's appreciation. I believe that if you are reading this, you agree that our troops deserve everything that we can give them. It's time that they get some more benefits. The President has proposed raising the death benefit to those killed in action and raising the life insurance. But I don't think that goes far enough. How about giving our troops an extra couple of hundred dollars per month to live and raise a family on? And what about getting all vehicles armored properly? I understand that they are working on the armor issue, but it should have already been done. We pride ourselves on having the best trained and best equipped military on the planet. And we shouldn't settle for anything less.
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