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No war without draft

Posted: October 11, 2009 7:27 p.m.
Updated: October 12, 2009 4:55 a.m.
Regarding “McKeon sides with Obama on war,” The Signal, Oct. 7: The problem with Mr. McKeon’s position is that we are not “all in” unless there is a Selective Service Draft to send your son or daughter, brother or father to Afghanistan.

The draft has always been the standard of this country’s willingness to prosecute (or not) a war to final victory and the post-war decades-long occupation and Marshall Plan-type rebuilding of the defeated country.

Both the Republicans and the Democrats in Congress know there is not universal or even majority support among the American public to send our young people to Afghanistan, interrupting their lives and forcing them to fight in a foreign war of uncertain goals, in part to support a corrupt Afghanistan government that daily has less and less support among its people. Sounds like Vietnam, doesn’t it?

The volunteer military was never intended to fight a nine-year war, without a draft, without a conscription of willing Americans. That is the public debate we should be having.

If there is no draft and no support at home to sustain a draft for Afghanistan, then there should be no war in Afghanistan! We should figure out a way to cut a deal with the Taliban: “You don’t let al-Qaida back in to use your country to launch terrorist attacks against the U.S. and we will leave. If you do let al-Qaida come back, we will be back, too, and this time to stay!”


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