(9 am – promoted by ek hornbeck)
John McCain stands with George W. Bush, and against the troops. These two politicians, have consistently funded the scandal ridden mercenaries of Blackwater and let the DoD shield KBR rapists from prosecution, and both men have continued to allow US tax dollars to be used to shore up a corrupt Iraqi government: while “Overlooking Rampant Corruption in the Iraqi Government
These two politicians, one the current Commander in Chief, and the other the GOP’s presumptive nominee to be the next CIC, have again allied to Oppose the new GI Bill. As Bob Herbert, writing in his NYT Column, “Doing the Troops Wrong” says:
“At the top of the list of no-brainers in Washington should be Senator Jim Webb’s proposed expansion of education benefits for the men and women who have served in the armed forces since Sept. 11, 2001.”
“…It’s awfully hard to make the case that these young people who have sacrificed so much don’t deserve a shot at a better future once their wartime service has ended…”
It does sound like a “no brainer” that everyone who understands the sacrifices that this country has demanded of the troops, most especially those who have voted to repeatedly put them in harms way would do all in their power to give them any and every benefit they are due and then some. But apparently, it is easier for the Bush Administration and their presumptive heir, McCain to talk about supporting the troops than to actually do anything to support them:
“…Well, you might be surprised at who is not supporting this effort. The Bush administration opposes it, and so does Senator John McCain…”
This isn’t the only time that McCain has allied with the Bush Administration to stand against the troops: McCain also Voted “NO” on Webb’s Amendment to give troops a minimum period of rest between deployments.
So, How do veterans feel about the GI Bill? Vets say they feel misled about GI Benefits
“…Cheated. Baited and switched. That’s how veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan say they feel about military recruiters who sold them on how the GI Bill would benefit them.
Soldiers, Marines and airmen, speaking at a Capitol Hill rally Tuesday, said they are not given enough funds from the bill to cover college expenses as they were promised.
Todd Bowers served two tours in Iraq.
“I came home proud, very proud of my service, with a Purple Heart on my chest and a Navy commendation medal with a ‘V’ for Valor,” he told a crowd of veterans.
“But I didn’t come back to the education I was expecting. I came back to three different types of student loans, two of which had gone to collections.”
Najwa McQueen said she joined the Louisiana National Guard in 2004 on what she thought was a promise to help pay for her college education.
“They kind of sell you a dream,” she said after the rally. “You think you’re going to get all of this stuff, and in reality, you don’t get that. I just kind of believed what my recruiter told me, which is not the truth…”
“…The benefits have not kept pace over the decades with the real costs of attending college. Moreover, service members have to make an out-of-pocket contribution – something over $100 a month during their first year of service – to qualify for the watered-down benefits…”
“…This is not exactly first-class treatment of the nation’s warriors…”
Why does McCain oppose the new GI Bill?
“…He seems to be responding to concerns of the military brass that enhanced educational opportunities could negatively affect retention rates. Not only is it wrong to want people to stay in the military because they have no alternatives, but such thinking ignores the advantages enhanced educational benefits offer in recruitment…”
“…Not only is it wrong to want people to stay in the military because they have no alternatives…” – Wrong, outrageous, and immoral in my opinion. McCain continues to show his “elitism”, opportunism and callous disregard for those who are economically disadvantaged–but shamefully, he wants to keep the troops disadvantaged. The press continues to call him a “hero”. What sort of “hero” would throw the troops under the bus for political and economic reasons, while requiring them and their families to continue to sacrifice and sacrifice and sacrifice? McCain may once have served and sacrificed in the military, but now he’s willing to leave the troops behind in his quest to be their new Commander in Chief. Unfortunately for the troops, if he succeeds in that quest, they will continue to suffer and sacrifice and he will continue to turn his back on them.