Bad Decisions Are Made Out of Fear

    By on November 25, 2015

    To the Editor:

    The same people who gave Bush a pass for NOT keeping America safe on 9/11, now blame Obama for the terrorist attack in Paris that, unlike 9/11, came without any memo warning them. They quote, out of context, Obama’s statement that ISIS has been “contained”. Yes…”contained”, as Obama said, contained in Iraq in terms of their expansion of geographic areas taken over there. They also attack our president for not using the term “Islamic terrorists” or “Muslim terrorists,” ignoring the fact that those who use those words are playing into ISIS’s hands and giving credibility, power and stature to ISIS by incorrectly aligning it with over one billion Muslims and their religion. Many GOP presidential candidates, as well as perennial war hawk John McCain, are playing politics with this issue and some are jettisoning American values as they try to parlay the fear of Syrian refugees into votes.

    They are also demanding that we send US troops to fight ISIS and increase our already bloated defense budget. This is not 1941, and more tanks and battleships will not defeat ISIS but re-prioritizing defense spending might help. Does anyone actually believe that sending tens of thousands young men and women to Syria and Iraq would stop ISIS from attacking us here at home? Do people actually believe that, if the Middle East nations who are much closer in proximity to ISIS and are not willing to commit their troops, we should commit ours? Was our very limited success in Iraq and Afghanistan a positive indicator of what we could accomplish with a much stronger enemy such as ISIS?

    I would rather risk my own life here in America than send our sons and daughters into a meat grinder as Bush did in his war on Iraq. ISIS would like nothing better than to have the United States send American troops for them to slaughter as it is much harder to kill us here at home due to our natural geographic boundaries and more scattered ethnic population. Let’s not forget that really bad decisions are made out of fear … like the one most Americans supported when Bush created ISIS by leading us into Iraq in the first place. The war against ISIS cannot be won if the Middle East nations directly affected by ISIS continue to refuse to commit their troops on the ground. If they don’t believe it is their war it certainly isn’t ours.

    — Thomas Hanley, Fulton

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