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We Went to Iraq and All We Got Was This Stupid Debt

The biggest problem with our economy comes from funding this war.

If you listen to Tea Party favorites such as congressional candidate Craig Huey, the reason why we have such a big deficit is that the U.S. is bankrupting itself with entitlements.

Yet one of the biggest causes of the economic mess we now face is the Republican-initiated Iraq War.

The death of Osama bin Laden shows more than ever how much of a waste our presence in Iraq has been.

The trail to bin Laden began with the capture of Khalid Sheikh Mohammed in Pakistan by that country’s security forces, which turned him over to the United States. Mohammed’s interrogation produced other intelligence activity in Afghanistan and Pakistan that ultimately led to finding bin Laden.

 Iraq did not figure into the process.

The Iraq War was unnecessary, justified by a threat of weapons of mass destruction that were never found. More than 4,444 U.S. soldiers have been killed with 32,051 seriously wounded. The war will cost more than $3 trillion, including billions that are unaccounted for, and it is financed with borrowed money.  

Those numbers can be a little daunting, so let me put it another way: The war in Iraq will cost each American approximately $10,000.

That spending has directly affected America's ability to fund social programs and to bring down unemployment by stimulating the economy with needed infrastructure improvements.

Yet the Republicans in Congress are focusing their attention on cutting discretionary domestic spending as a condition for raising the debt limit.

Huey himself backs continued high military spending.

The war in Afghanistan could still go either way. Both sides claim they are winning. If we cut and run now, the Taliban will fill the vacuum.

I am not optimistic. Afghanistan is a tribal country with one of the most corrupt central governments in the world. The drawdown of forces should start as scheduled this summer in Afghanistan, with a speed to be determined by conditions on the ground.

But when it comes to Iraq, one of the best ways we can cut the deficit is to maintain the timetable for the Iraqi drawdown with U.S. forces totally out of the country by year-end.

On July 12, vote for a congressional candidate who takes that unequivocal position.

elandro May 31, 2011 at 01:20 PM
i have been saying this for months, huey is a very dangerous person. no understanding of reality, only extremist views of religeon and politics. be very afraid of this guy!
elandro May 31, 2011 at 01:25 PM
posted before i finished my thought. huey is the Epitome of a typical teapartry member. all talking points no fully thought out ideas. this country does not need more palins and hueys, we need patriots with clear thinking
Getchel Wilson May 31, 2011 at 05:02 PM
Manhattan Patch is consistently showing itself as a liberal rag.....no real thought behind this article, just another smear against a good candidate. You have misrepresented Craig Huey's position as being the ONLY reason we have such a big deficit is because of entitlements....which is incorrect. It is ridiculous to think anyone would support Janice Hahn for our representative if you know anything about the city council in Los Angeles City. The city of Los Angeles is verging on bankruptcy....there are ongoing grand jury investigations right now re the corruption, bribes, etc. in various city departments. Manhattan Patch is a liberal rag spreading misinformation because it is more important for a liberal to win than to support a candidate who is a business man and is a conservative. Manhattan Patch doesn't care about our district, only about promoting their own political views. Tiresome.
Kevin Keenan May 31, 2011 at 05:46 PM
I used to enjoy the Patch, then they took a sharp left turn, once AOL bought HuffPo. It was a nice idea, but soon to go the way of all the other liberal rags
Travel May 31, 2011 at 06:35 PM
I agree 100% with Gretchel and Kevin. In fact, I wrote to you several months ago to tell you I did not appreciate editorialing in the name of news. Call it op-ed if y ou feel so inclined to write this stuff. This is why I stopped having Patch delivered to my mailbox each day; I look at it once or twice a week to see if there is any news I haven't already heard. With this latest installment I may not look at it at all. I can get this stuff in the LA Times and it is better written. Ironically, I justnoticed there is a pop-up on the bottom left-hand side of my screen that says "Read More in Opinion." This isn't Opinion?
JDJung June 01, 2011 at 03:08 AM
You're right on, Paul. Our invasion of Iraq also weakened Iran's biggest threat. For that, I don't feel any safer.
Jane June 01, 2011 at 04:44 AM
Last I checked, 1 in 7 people was on food stamps. Nearly 60% of the federal budget is entitlements. Do the math. It's welfare, medicare, social security and other social entitlements that SANK US (past tense - we're done).
MIchelle Murphy June 02, 2011 at 06:13 PM
Indeed do the math. If we had not given tax cuts to the super rich and started a war (or is it three) of aggression we would be as well off as we were in Clinton's time when budgets got balanced and the deficit was shrinking. This article dares to speak some truth using actual figures and knee jerk Fox News misinformed types call it a useless liberal rag (when no rags were used just ethereal electronic impulses). If we actually went for the Medicare-ending Republican plan favored by Huey and almost all Republicans the deficit would not decrease. Gingrich (I hate to say it) was right the first time. That plan is nothing but extremist social engineering and badly designed at that.
Richard Kriete June 02, 2011 at 11:18 PM
Liz; You couldn't be more spot on. I'm a Republican, but the Republicans in office today are there for their career and not their service to the country. That is why they are so ignorantly partisan and constantly avoid the truth about Iraq in particular; it's for their guaranteed entitlements and paychecks. What a farce! Richard
orlando June 07, 2011 at 08:35 PM
Thanks for revealing yourself as just another tax and spend liberal. That makes reading your comment much easier. :-)

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