Tuesday, January 03, 2006

Murtha's Musings Mutilate Mainstream Support for Military

What is Rep. John Murtha (D-PA) truly up to? His most recent statements can't be read out of context.
"Would you join (the military) today?," he was asked in an interview taped on Friday.

"No," replied Murtha of Pennsylvania, the top Democrat on the House of Representatives subcommittee that oversees defense spending and one of his party's leading spokesmen on military issues.

"And I think you're saying the average guy out there who's considering recruitment is justified in saying 'I don't want to serve'," the interviewer continued.

"Exactly right," said Murtha, who drew White House ire in November after becoming the first ranking Democrat to push for a pullout of U.S. forces from Iraq as soon as it could be done safely.
Let's see how many ways Rep. Murtha is purposefully undermining the military's capabilities:

1) By using his position in Congress, he is using his position as a bully pulpit against the military's recruitment efforts. He knows that he's able to get a bunch of microphones stuck in front of him because he was a decorated Vietnam veteran. Yet, his valor on the battlefield was more than 30 years ago, and there's absolutely no link between service in the military and any greater insight on when and how to use military force.

2) Murtha's comments clearly indicate that there is no military on the planet to which Murtha would ever join. None would ever meet his 'needs.'

3) Murtha is contradicted by the incredibly high reenlistment rate among Active Duty troops, especially those returning from Iraq and Afghanistan.

4) Murtha is contradicted by the incredibly high enlistment rate among those entering the service for the first time. This comes despite the fact of an overwhelmingly negative mainstream media spin on the situation in Iraq and Afghanistan.

5) Murtha is contradicted by Sen. Joe Lieberman (D-CT), who has noted that the situation in Iraq is far better than Murtha would indicate, not to mention that the military isn't anywhere near being broken. The soldiers, sailors, and Marines would all say to a man that the military isn't broken. Having visited Iraq four times in the past few years, Lieberman is in a very good position to know what is really going on in Iraq. Yet, the media didn't cover his statements nearly as well as they're covering Murtha's. Agenda journalism anyone?

6) Murtha wouldn't say what kind of military he would serve in, but I have a few ideas. It would appear that he'd find no problem serving in the various European military forces, some of which are nothing more than glorified social welfare programs. These are military forces that can't be deployed worldwide, can barely act within their own borders and which has the added benefit of not being able to die on a battlefield overseas. If the military can't be deployed overseas, you can't get into foreign entanglements, and there's no way that your forces can be called upon to react to a foreign crisis. It then becomes someone else's problem to deal with. In other words, Murtha would prefer that the US military become the French military.

Meanwhile, Macsmind takes Murtha to task for his odious, and misleading comments. And he's ex-military, so his say is one backed by experience. I have the history books to guide me, and there's little to compare this episode to. Never have we seen so many individuals abusing their freedom of speech to undermine a US war effort in a way that can and will be detrimental to the long term strategic and tactical benefit of the US. Murtha represents a small fraction of people in Congress, and indeed in the US, who want to cut and run from Iraq, and are getting increasingly desperate for attention - knowing that their power is running out. Blogs for Bush points out that the Democrats can no longer say that they're supporting the troops but not the war - particularly when Murtha comes out and says that he doesn't support recruitment efforts which are designed to keep the military strong regardless of its use.

Rep. Murtha has just come out of the closet as an anti-war anti military mouthpiece for the hard Left of the Democratic Party. Is it any wonder that most people do not trust the Democrats with the keys to foreign policy.

And this bodes poorly for Democrat efforts to win seats in 2006. Actively calling on people to not support the military and undermining recruitment efforts will be seized upon by the GOP and used as a battering ram at a time when the Democrats should be pushing on to other agenda issues (like the economy or Gulf Coast reconstruction, which could be winning issues). Instead, the loudmouths are going to push the party over a collective cliff from which recovery is doubtful.

Donklephant muses about what Murtha is up to:
Yes, war should not romanticized nor its ramifications lightly considered. There is definitely a necessity for the existence and support of our military though.

Murtha’s comments of late do not offer a vision or direction for what activities the military should be involved in moving forward. We need to have more insight into what Murtha’s idea of a military worthy to be joined would look like.

Tammy Bruce seems to think that Murtha has committed sedition with his repeated comments. If words have meanings, this is certainly fair game. Problem is that no one seems to care about enforcing laws or worrying much about the repercussions of actions, especially by those on the Left.

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