Ron Paul
2003 Ron Paul Chapter 61

Ron Paul H. Con. res. 177

4 June 2003

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H. Con. res. 177
4 June 2003

2003 Ron Paul 61:1
Mr. PAUL. Mr. Speaker, I rise to commend the members of our armed forces, who serve our country in the most difficult of circumstances. They endure terrible hardships in the course of their service: they are shipped thousands of miles across the globe for everything from border control duty to combat duty, enduring terribly long separations from their families and loved ones.

2003 Ron Paul 61:2
I believe it is appropriate for Congress to recognize and commend this service to our country and I join with my colleagues to do so. I am concerned, however, that legislation like H. Con. Res. 177 seeks to use our support for the troops to advance a very political and controversial message. In addition to expressing sympathy and condolences to the families of those who have lost their lives in service to our country, for example, this legislation endorses the kind of open-ended occupation and nation-building that causes me great concern. It “recommits” the United States to “helping the people of Iraq and Afghanistan build free and vibrant democratic societies.” What this means is hundreds of thousands of American troops remaining in Iraq and Afghanistan for years to come, engaged in nation-building activities that the military is neither trained nor suited for. It also means tens and perhaps hundreds of billions of American tax dollars being shipped abroad at a time when our national debt is reaching unprecedented levels.

2003 Ron Paul 61:3
The legislation inaccurately links our military action against Afghanistan, whose government was in partnership with Al-Qaeda, with our recent attack on Iraq, claiming that these were two similar campaigns in the war on terror. In fact, some of us are more concerned that the policy of pre-emptive military action, such as was the case in Iraq, will actually increase the likelihood of terrorist attacks against the United States — a phenomenon already predicted by the CIA.

2003 Ron Paul 61:4
Mr. Speaker, it is unfortunate that some would politicize an issue like this. If we are to commend our troops let us commend our troops. We should not be forced to endorse the enormously expensive and counter-productive practice of nation-building and preemptive military strikes to do so.

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