Meaningful Distinction:

Patrick S. Lasswell Look outward for something to accomplish, not inward for something to despise.
pslblog at gmail dot com
Tuesday, November 28, 2006
Open Letter to Congressman Blumenauer Regarding the Proposed Draft

Congressman Blumenauer,

Your colleague, Representative Rangel, has again put forward his ill considered and unnecessary proposal for a military draft. To support this exceptionally bad idea, he has put forward outdated and untrue assertions that the US military is composed of uneducated and disadvantaged people. He somehow thinks that our foreign policy would benefit from a resumption of the draft because this would tie our hands from engaging except in the utmost extreme.

I have the privilege of serving in the Navy Reserve with the best group of people I know. Everybody in my unit is there because they want to be. I do not want to serve with people who do not want to serve with me. I do not want to fight in my backyard because we have abandoned every opportunity to fight elsewhere.

This year I worked as a consultant in Iraqi Kurdistan, and I have seen the cost of allowing Saddam Hussein to dictate conditions. You may regret the war, but my friends in Iraqi Kurdistan do not in the slightest. Their current prosperity is a result of their decision to fight and the success of the volunteer Peshmerga against Hussein's draftees. Their continued prosperity is dependent on our keeping faith with the people of the Kurdish Region.

Representative Rangel is wrong on so many levels. We will fight for our country and each other. Bonuses justify the economic decision to stay with the military between fights for the many of us who have tremendous prospects and families to support. Bonuses are a lot cheaper than a giant conscript military and civil service corps.

Patrick S Lasswell
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