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Wednesday, February 16, 2005

Author Claims Bush Decision Put Money Into Flawed Missile Defense Instead Of Soldier's Equipment

From Capitol Hill Blue

Opinion
Why Can't We Provide Even Basic Protection for Our Troops?

By MARTIN SCHRAM
Feb 16, 2005, 07:18

On Aug. 18, 2004, President Bush was in campaign defense mode as he stood in a Boeing factory in Pennsylvania and championed the vast $50 billion missile defense system that he ordered deployed before it has been fully tested.

"We say to those tyrants who believe they can blackmail America and the free world, 'You fire, we're going to shoot it down,' " said the president. "I think those who oppose this ballistic missile system really don't understand the threats of the 21st century. They're living in the past. We're living in the future. We're going to do what's necessary to protect this country."

On Dec. 8, 2004, Specialist Thomas Wilson of the Tennessee National Guard, who lives in the present, doing what is necessary to protect this country by living in harm's way each day in Iraq, put a secretary of defense in defense mode. The guardsman told the secretary that soldiers are so lacking in basic armor that they are scrounging through landfills for rusty metal and bulletproof glass to help keep themselves safer.

"Why don't we have those resources readily available to us?" asked Wilson. His words prompted clapping and cheers from many of the 2,300 soldiers; but only a non-answer from Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, whose defensive posture was basically that war-is-hell and it's not his fault.

Wilson's words should have put the president in defense mode as well; but no one in the White House press corps ever thought to ask Bush the key question of why he sent his troops into war without the basic armor they need to protect themselves. The reporters apparently forgot that they are covering the place where the buck stops.

It was the chief executive and commander-in-chief who made the choices to spend billions of bucks to put still-unproven defense missiles in the ground while putting soldiers on the ground in Iraq without basic armor. READ MORE:
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Name: d.
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