This video may contain images depicting the reality and horror of war/violence and should only be viewed by a mature audience.
Scott N June 2017
For too long, the women of this nation have been complacent while our brothers, sons, husbands, and fathers are sent to kill, maim, brutalize, destroy and even die in defense of our alleged liberty.
My son, Casey, joined the military in 2000, shortly before his 21st birthday, to help pay for college. He had already completed everything he could take at the local JC and was eager to move on—but he had a fulltime job, and even though we (his dad and I) helped out as much as we could, Casey also had three younger siblings and our family was firmly ensconced in the working-class.
Well, 16 months after he enlisted was September 11, 2001—and no matter what really happened that day—I had a horrible sense of foreboding that it would lead to my son’s early death—and no matter how much I prayed, or cajoled him not to go, or worried—my worst fears were realized and Casey was killed just hours after arriving in Iraq on April 04, 2004.
My younger brother the attorney has a friend from high school I know reasonably well who is also an attorney–he’s worked in the biggest state’s AG’s office doing appellate criminal for a quarter century now, and is at the top of the legal food chain there. Let’s call my brother’s friend Bill. Bill has an adult son I met for the first real time two and a half years ago during their last visit to Austin. Bill’s son had been getting in trouble in his home town and the final straw was his stealing a senior police officer’s bicycle and riding around him in circles taunting him. That part might be sort of funny but the other stuff he was up to wasn’t, and the law had been gunning for him, so even with a daddy who had no small amount of legal clout he was in serious trouble and the judge was giving him the choice of the military or prison. The boy took the military, and the Army was giving what sounded to him and his folks the best deal–two year enlistment, but you’d be going to Iraq for one of those years. Boy took the deal; his parents signed off on it.
by J.D. Tuccille
Nov. 6, 2008
Rep. Rahm Emanuel of Illinois, President-Elect Barack Obama’s choice for chief of staff in his incoming administration, is co-author of a book, The Plan: Big Ideas for America, that calls for, among other things, compulsory service for all Americans ages 18 to 25. The following excerpt is from pages 61-62 of the 2006 book:
by Ralph Nader
The Nader Page
Monday, October 27. 2008
I wish to declare the principle of political equivalence as grounds for the moral authority to govern through shared benefits and sacrifices between these in Washington, D.C. who rule and the citizens who are ruled.
Two simple, short bills in Congress will illustrate this major way to improve the quality of public deliberation, enhance the well-being of the populace and provide equity, now sorely lacking as the gap between Congress, the White House and the people widens recklessly.
The first legislation would state that anytime the Congress and the White House plunge our country, either constitutionally or unconstitutionally, into a war or significant armed conflict beyond our borders, all age-qualified and able-bodied children and grandchildren of all members of Congress and the President and Vice President will be conscripted immediately into the armed forces.
President George W. Bush, who took our country into an illegal, continuing war of aggression against Iraq in 2003 on a platform of lies, deceptions and cover-ups, has caused the loss of 4,200 American lives, 100,000 injuries and over one million civilian Iraqi lives.
At $14 million per hour, plus the long term expenses, this war will cost taxpayers three trillion dollars according to Nobel Laureate economist, Joseph Stieglitz. Imagine how many public facilities throughout America such a sum could repair, expand and modernize. Imagine the well-paying jobs in every community.
Mr. Bush has stated often that the Iraq war and occupation has been “worth the sacrifice.” By whom? Certainly not the Bush and Cheney families. Their children, starting with Jenna and Barbara, are enjoying their comfortable lives far from the horrors inflicted on that distant country and its people.
The clear anticipation that the politician’s offspring be at risk or, at the least, be very inconvenienced by commencing their military career, would induce much more careful public deliberations on Capitol Hill and in the White House.
As long as the political rulers, with the savoring corporate profiteers by their side, can send other young Americans to die and kill – mostly poor whites, African Americans and Latinos—they will be more susceptible to be swept by emotions of giving over their constitutional responsibilities to presidential warmongers who bully and stampede them toward funding violent follies.
Equivalence would provide members of Congress with incentives to avoid the triad of being gutless, spineless, and deliberately clueless so as to acquire deniability.
The second bill would stipulate that no member of Congress, and no President, Vice President or Cabinet member would have any health insurance, pension or other benefits until all Americans are provided these long overdue essential benefits of a giant, modern economy.
With such equivalence, members of Congress would not be so cavalier about indexing their salaries to inflation but denying such to the federal minimum wage now wallowing at $6.55 per hour. Inflation-adjusted since 1968, when labor productivity was half of what it is today, the minimum wage would now be $10 per hour. Even at that level, it would still be far less than the $100 per hour, including benefits that Senators and Representatives now receive.
In the nineteen thirties, John Maynard Keynes thought it would not be long before high-productivity economies would solve what he called “the economic problem.”
After World War II, Western European peoples, rising from the ruins of that conflagration, secured for themselves universal health insurance, decent wages, decent pensions, four-week paid vacation, paid maternity and family sick leave. Most of these nations abolished the chronic poverty such as that which exists and is growing in our country.
Who will introduce these two legislative bills? Congressman Dennis Kucinich? Senator Russ Feingold? Will readers of this column communicate with their members of Congress about the wondrous effects of political equivalence on a much needed sense of community between the rulers and the ruled?
Irrespective of who’s anointed at the presidential coronation in January, many more Americans will soon be performing national service, including compulsory military tours of duty in the never-ending War Against Terror and the soon-to-be-announced Wars Against Sedition, Starvation, Unemployment, and Internal Insurrection, et cetera, et cetera, et cetera.
Updated: 1.18.09 Video replaced
Ok, so there was a bit of buzz a month or so ago about “Obama Calls For National Civilian Stasi“, and currently people are reacting to notions that he supports a military draft (both seemingly disconnected in online discourse I’ve seen so far). But in reviewing his prior statements I’ve spotted one thing noteworthy I hadn’t thought much about before: Continue reading
By Patrick Martin
13 September 2008
National service forum at Columbia University
In remarks that clearly pointed toward the restoration of the military draft under an Obama administration, the Democratic candidate said Thursday night that his job as president would include demanding that the American people recognize an “obligation” for military service. “If we are going into war, then all of us go, not just some,” Senator Barack Obama declared.
Obama’s comments came as he and his Republican opponent, Senator John McCain, took part in a forum on national service at Columbia University in New York City. Earlier in the day, both candidates joined in a memorial service at the site of the World Trade Center, commemorating the victims of the 9/11 terrorist attacks.
While “national service” encompasses more than the military, including such government-run programs as the Peace Corps, Americorps and Teach for America, as well as private and religious programs, both McCain and Obama focused on expanding the US Armed Forces as a major goal of the next administration, whether Democratic or Republican.
In an indication of the bipartisan support for the increasing militarization of American society, McCain jokingly offered to name Obama his coordinator for national service if the Republican were to win the election, and Obama reciprocated.
McCain Supports The “DRAFT”
Today at one of McCain’s campaign stops, a person in the audience told McCain if he plans to use the military to continue the wars he would need to bring back the Draft. He replied “I Don’t Disagree With Anything You Said”. McWarmonger wants to reinstate the selective service DRAFT.
John McCain: Town Hall 08/20/08
Las Cruces, NM 08/20/08
A UDIENCE MEMBER: Senator McCain I truly hope you get the opportunity to chase Bin Laden right to the gates of hell and push him in as you stated on your forum. I do have a question though. Disable veterans, especially in this state have horrible conditions, their medical is substandard. They drive four hours one way to Albuquerque for a simple doctors appointment which is often canceled. Our VA hospital is dirty it is understaffed, it is running on maximum overload. The prescription medicines are ten years behind standard medical care we have seven hundred claims stacked up at the VA office in Albuquerque some of them are ten and seven years old waiting to be processed in the mean time these people are homeless. My son is an officer in the Air Force, and I am a vet and I was raised in a military family. I think it is a sad state of affairs when we have illegal aliens having a Medicaid card that can access specialist top physicians, the best of medical and our vets can’t even get to a doctor. These are the people that we tied yellow ribbons for and Bush patted on the back. If we don’t reenact the draft I don’t think we will have anyone to chase Bin Laden to the gates of hell.
JOHN MCCAIN: Ma’am let me say that I don’t disagree with anything you said and thank you and I am grateful for your support of all of our veterans.
LABEL: JM NM 08-20 (EW#15) CRKD – ClipB – LS
To download a higher-resolution version of this clip, VISIT: http://issuealliance.box.net/shared/h…
Tonight’s: Support The Troops-Gate, The Phony Terror-War-Gate Civilian Division and Phony Terror-War-Gate Government Division.
August 20, 2008 MSNBC
May 29, 2008
A “Star Birthday” is the birthday where ones age matches ones birth date. My first-born son, Casey, was born on the 29th of May in 1979 and today, if he wasn’t killed in BushCo’s war for profit brought to you by the Military Industrial Congressional Complex, he would have turned 29.
In the dark of night when I am tossing and turning from sadness and regret, I often wonder what my family would be doing if Casey were not dead. Casey wanted to get married, have children, be an elementary school teacher and, most of all, live to be at least three times older than he was when he was killed on April 04, 2004 in Iraq. Would I still be married to Casey’s dad? Would I still be working in Health and Human Services for the County of Napa? Would I have finally awakened to the truth that George Bush and his evil occupations are just boils of the much deadlier disease of unchecked militarism? I don’t know because Casey was killed and we won’t be celebrating his birthday no matter what.
This evening in Berkeley, Ca, I was supposed to have debated a military recruiter in front of an audience of students, parents and other community members as my way of honoring Casey’s sacrifice. If Casey died for any “noble cause” it will be to prevent others of our young people from making the same tragic mistake that our family did when Casey was lied to and his goodness was exploited to help fulfill his recruiter’s quota for that month. We found out after Casey died that a recruitment contract is only binding on the recruit and the government can break all of its promises. A unilateral contract used to be against the law before we entered the Bizarro-world of US Empire.
I have absolutely no respect for military recruiters that go after our young people and some as young as 5th grade have had AK-47’s shoved in their little hands that have barely lost the dimples in their knuckles and some of the biggest selling video games are ones based on war and destruction. How can anyone, from Dick Cheney to Sgt. What-a-Liar, face himself or herself in the mirror knowing that their livelihood derives directly from murder and oppression?
Recruitment levels are thankfully down, despite the greatly lowered standards and increased Pentagon recruitment budget. To try to cure even a small part of the sickness that is causing our so-called Republic to slide into a military-fascism, we need to put ourselves in between the military services and our children. To cure the evil of military/corporate Empire, we need to put ourselves in between the US military and the children of Iraq and Afghanistan who did not volunteer to be murdered in their own beds or orphaned by US soldiers who are often victims of poverty and oppression themselves.
A “volunteer” military that counts on poverty, ignorance, a tanking economy, and false patriotism is one of the tools that the Military Industrial Congressional Complex uses to keep our nation in constant war while using the deceptive phraseology of “Support the Troops;” the same troops that they are mis-using as bullet sponges and paid assassins. Some people, who like to complain, but not get out from behind their computers to protest, are comfortable with an all “volunteer” Army because it bestows on them a false sense of safety in their lack of shared sacrifice.
But I reluctantly say: Bring the dreaded-draft on.
A forced conscription would put a crimp in the Military Industrial Congressional Complex’s wars of aggression, because the “not my kid” people would rise up and give the anti-war movement the numbers we have so desperately needed to put a swelling sea of bodies on the streets to demonstrate what 2/3rds of a nation really looks like. I want to go on the record to say that I am not pro-draft, but pro-radicalism. If it takes a draft to radicalize apathetic Americans it is better than having to be radicalized the way I was: by three Army officers appearing one evening in my living-room regretting to inform me that my first born had been killed.
I said I was “supposed” to debate a military recruiter on Casey’s Star Birthday, but that won’t happen because no recruiter had the balls to debate me. Is it because they know they can’t defend their immoral practices, or because they don’t want to look into the sorrow filled eyes of the mother of a soldier who died for lies (on his birthday)—could I potentially be the mother of one of their recruits? Or both?
Today on Casey’s Star Birthday, you can give him a posthumous birthday present. Donate to organizations that do counter-recruitment efforts, or that support soldiers who are resisters.
Supporting Cindy for Congress also supports a reduction in US imperial militarism.
In researching the events leading to America’s downfall, I have had to continually readjust my understanding of the situation as new information surfaced. Throughout the entire learning process it has proven especially difficult to determine whether the CIA determines the secret policies it carries out, or if the agency merely serve as a loyal tool to the moneymen who control the world from behind the scenes. It is very difficult to sort out the facts from the fabrication about an ongoing disinformation campaign while immersed in it.