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The SPEAKER pro tempore. Under a previous order of the House, the gentleman from Texas (Mr. PAUL) is recognized for 5 minutes.
2007 Ron Paul 20:1
Mr. PAUL. Madam Speaker, I have never met anyone who did not support our troops. Sometimes, however, we hear accusations that someone or some group does not support the men and women serving in our Armed Forces. But this is pure demagoguery, and it is intellectually dishonest. The accusers play on emotions to gain support for controversial policies, implying that those who disagree are unpatriotic. But keeping our troops out of harms way, especially when the war is unnecessary, is never unpatriotic. There is no better way to support the troops.
2007 Ron Paul 20:2
Since we now know that Iraq had no weapons of mass destruction and was not threatening anyone, we must come to terms with 3,000 American deaths and 23,000 American casualties. It is disconcerting that those who never believed the justifications given for our invasion and who, now, want the war ended, are still accused of not supporting the troops. This is strange, indeed.
2007 Ron Paul 20:3
Instead of questioning who has the best interest of our troops at heart, we should be debating which policy is best for our country. Defensive wars to preserve our liberties, fought only with proper congressional declarations are legitimate. Casualties under such circumstances still are heartbreaking, but they are understandable. Casualties that occur in undeclared, unnecessary wars, however, are bewildering. Why must so many Americans be killed or hurt in Iraq when our security and our liberty were never threatened?
2007 Ron Paul 20:4
Cliches about supporting the troops are designed to distract from failed policies, policies promoted by powerful special interests that benefit from war, anything to steer the discussion away from the real reasons the war in Iraq will not end anytime soon.
2007 Ron Paul 20:5
Many now agree that we must change our policy and extricate ourselves from the mess in Iraq. They cite a mandate from the American people for a new direction. This opinion is now more popular and, thus, now more wildly held by politicians in Washington. But there is always a qualifier. We cant simply stop funding the war because we must support the troops. I find this conclusion bizarre. It means one either believes the support-the-troops propaganda put out by the original promoters of the war, or that one actually is for the war after all, despite the public protestations.
2007 Ron Paul 20:6
In reality, support for the status quo and the Presidents troop surge in Iraq means expanding the war to include Syria and Iran. The naval buildup in the region and the proxy war we just fought to take over Somalia demonstrate the administrations intention to escalate our current war into something larger.
2007 Ron Paul 20:7
There is just no legitimacy to the argument that voting against funding the war somehow harms our troops. Perpetuating and escalating the war only serves those whose egos are attached to some claimed victory in Iraq and those with a determination to engineer regime change in Iran.
2007 Ron Paul 20:8
Dont believe for a minute that additional congressional funding is needed so our troops can defend themselves or extricate themselves from the war zone. That is nonsense. The DOD has hundreds of billions of dollars in the pipeline available to move troops anywhere on Earth, including home.
2007 Ron Paul 20:9
We shouldnt forget that the administration took $600 million from the war in Afghanistan and used it in Iraq before any direct appropriations were made for the invasion of Iraq. Funds are always available to put troops in harms way. They, likewise, are always available for leaving a war zone.
2007 Ron Paul 20:10
Those in Congress who claim they want the war ended, yet feel compelled to keep funding it, are badly misguided. They either are wrong in their assessment that cutting funds would hurt the troops, or they need to be more honest about supporting a policy destined to dramatically increase the size and the scope of this war. Rest assured, one can be patriotic and truly support the troops by denying funds to perpetuate and spread this ill-advised war.
2007 Ron Paul 20:11
The sooner we come to this realization, the better it will be for all of us.