Given the difficulties of the Iraq war, the Bush administration has constantly been on the defensive regarding America’s continued presence there. President Bush’s announcement Wednesday evening that there would be an increase in the number of US troops in Iraq has certainly rankled many members of Congress.
Senator Barbara Boxer (D-CA) has probably never met an anti-war stance she didn’t like. In an appearance before the Senate yesterday, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice was put directly in the cross-hairs of Boxer’s frustration over the recent troop surge.
"Who pays the price? I'm not going to pay a personal price," Boxer said. "My kids are too old, and my grandchild is too young."
Then, to Rice: "You're not going to pay a particular price, as I understand it, with an immediate family."
Ah, the rhetoric never changes. Apparently one is not qualified to declare war unless one has a child or grandchild who is eligible to join the military. Funny, but I don’t recall this issue being as prevalent during the Bill Clinton presidency. His daughter Chelsea turned 18 years of age in early 1998. Why didn’t Clinton send his child to the war zone in the Balkans?
The fact of the matter is this “Would you send your kid to war?” diatribe is a completely bogus argument. We have a volunteer military in this country. No parents can choose to send their children to war. An 18-year old, a legal adult, chooses to join the military all on his/her own accord. I understand that some young people don’t join with the intention of going to war. However, they certainly understand there is a risk of being called for a tour of duty.
Another aspect of this argument which infuriates me is the insinuation that the President doesn’t wrestle with how difficult a decision this is. Just because his daughters aren’t ever going to be put in harm’s way, does that mean he’s naturally callous when putting others in that situation?
As we saw yesterday, Senator Boxer is merely another parrot of leftist-kook talking points.
UPDATE: White House condemns Boxer's line of questioning towards Rice.