The wars in Afghanistan and Iraq have cost over 1 trilion dollars so far, and over 6,500 troops have made the ultimate sacrifice. Mitt Romney would have left 30,000 troops in Iraq. He called bringing them home “tragic”. Romney wants to leave our troops in Afghanistan and called Obama’s bringing 30,000 soldiers home Obama’s “biggest mistake.”
Obama for America’s new TV ad about our wars is called “Rebuilding”:
“A decade of war that cost us dearly and now for president a clear choice. President Obama ended the Iraq war. Mitt Romney would have left 30,000 troops in Iraq and called bringing them home tragic. Obama’s brought 30,000 soldiers back from Afghanistan and has a responsible plan to end the war. Romney calls it Obama’s ‘biggest mistake’. It’s time to stop fighting over there and start rebuilding here.”
Mitt Romney has made some utterly clueless comments about the wars. Romney: “We’re, of course, very happy to see our troops come out. But I think you’re
going to see another lesson learned. I think we’re going to find that this president by not putting in place a status in forces agreement with the Iraqi leadership has pulled our troops out in a precipitous way and we should have left 10,000, 20,000, 30,000 personnel there to help transition to the Iraqis’ own military capabilities. I’m very concerned in this setting. I hope it works out. But I’m concerned. [Fox News Sunday, 12/18/11]
I don’t know where Romney was, but we had a year and a half of a transition during which we advised and assisted the Iraqi security forces in preparation for the withdrawal.
Romney called the withdrawal “tragic”. “It is my view that the withdrawal of all of our troops from Iraq by the end of this year is an enormous mistake, and failing by the Obama administration. The precipitous withdrawal is unfortunate – it’s more than unfortunate, I think it’s tragic. It puts at risk many of the victories that were hard won by the men and women who served there.” [New York Times, 11/11/11]
We note that these “victories” are not something Mitt Romney ever felt compelled to win himself, since he dodged the draft four times. It’s one thing to be anti-war and dodge the draft, but Romney was and is pro-war with other people’s lives while he was dodging the draft.
Memories of war:
“Eleven years ago this weekend, the first U.S. soldiers entered Afghanistan. As many are now leaving the longest war in American history, two-thirds of those in uniform defending Afghanistan are Afghans — a force of over 350,000.” [CBS News, 10/7/12]
The Iraq War Was Nine Years Long. “The last convoy of American troops drove into Kuwait on Sunday morning, punctuating the end of the nearly nine-year war in Iraq.” [New York Times, 12/18/11]
4,475 U.S. Troops Died During Operations In Iraq. [Department of Defense casualty statistics, accessed 10/21/12] 2,113 U.S. Troops Have Died In Operation Enduring Freedom. [Department of Defense casualty statistics, accessed 10/21/12]
But Romney has said about Iran: “If you want peace, prepare for war.” “The United States needs a very different policy. Si vis pacem, para bellum. That is a Latin phrase, but the ayatollahs will have no trouble understanding its meaning from a Romney administration: If you want peace, prepare for war.” [Mitt Romney Op-Ed, Wall Street Journal, 11/10/11]
Romney also believes in a first strike option against Iran. On the Rick and Bubba Show he was asked, “Do you support a first strike against them, either by Israel or by us or a combination of the two to halt that process?” Romney: “Yes, and I think you actually have to act before they had a weapon, a deliverable weapon.” [XM Radio, 3/9/12] He told Fox News he was prepared to do it unilaterally. “BAIER: Would you be prepared to do it unilaterally if need be? ROMNEY: Of course.” [Special Report With Bret Baier, Fox News, 11/29/11]
Romney is either eager to go to war with Iran for other reasons or naive enough to take their word for their nuclear capabilities. He told Sean Hannity, “And there’s no question about it becoming a nuclear Iran. This is not something where our intelligence sources have to tell us that they have nuclear material on the make. They announced it themselves. They show us their progress. This is something we understand. We must not shrink from the reality that, that not an acceptable conclusion.” [Hannity Radio, 3/5/12]
Remember when Romney said the Afghanistan drawdown was Obama’s “biggest mistake”? Today, his adviser is singing Romnesia, saying “He (Romney) supports the 2014 transition. He’s been very clear about that. [Morning Joe, MSNBC, 10/22/12]
There’s a reason the military donors are showing overwhelming support for the President via donations to Obama as compared to Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney. “The new numbers bring Obama’s total from military donors to $678,611, and Romney’s to $398,450.”
With a vision toward rebuilding America, the President “proposed to use approximately half of the savings that we will achieve from winding down wars in Iraq and Afghanistan over the 6 year period of the infrastructure plan with the other half going towards paying down the debt.”
Or we could follow Romney’s plan for us by staying in Afghanistan endlessly and starting a war with Iran while America crumbles and more of our troops make the ultimate sacrifice.
Ms. Jones is the co-founder/ editor-in-chief of PoliticusUSA and a member of the White House press pool.
Sarah hosts Politicus News and co-hosts Politicus Radio. Her analysis has been featured on several national radio, television news programs and talk shows, and print outlets including Stateside with David Shuster, as well as The Washington Post, The Atlantic Wire, CNN, MSNBC, The Week, The Hollywood Reporter, and more.
Sarah is a member of the Society of Professional Journalists.