This section will be near and dear to my heart as a former infantryman and as one who still has many classmates still on active duty. Before I read this section, I would like to list the things I would like to see: opposition to the effort to repeal DADT, a commitment to only fund spending the military requests (for example don’t make the Air Force buy more C-17s at $244.5 million apiece than they say they need), abolish the Department of Homeland security, fully fund and authorize the border patrol to close the border, & some sort of commitment to oppose the pulling out of Afghanistan on a strict timeline. Let’s see if there are any matches…
Page 38 We are a nation at war. We must confront the worldwide threat of terrorism and to deal with the world as it is, not as we wish it to be. We will do all that is needed to protect our homeland, support our troops and the veterans who have so honorably served us, and ensure our government has a coherent strategy to confront and defeat the terrorist threat. And we will never apologize for advancing the cause of freedom and democracy around the world, nor will we abandon our historic role in lifting up those who struggle to receive the blessings of liberty. Fluffery, but nice fluffery.
Pass Clean Troop Funding Bills- When asked to provide our troops with the resources they need, we will do so without delay. That means no more troop funding bills held up by unrelated policy changes, or extraneous domestic spending and pork-barrel projects. Alright, sounds nice and good, but no commitment to not make a service buy something they say they don’t need.
Keep Terrorists Out of America – We will prevent the government from importing terrorists onto American soil. We will hold President Obama and his administration responsible for any Guantanamo Bay detainees they release who return to fight against our troops or who have become involved in any terrorist plots or activities. I really do not think that President Obama wants to “import” terrorists into the US and release them into the wild. While I would oppose closing Guantanamo and moving the prisoners to the US, I am not sure how the Legislative branch would hold the Executive Branch “accountable” if a released terrorist fought in the US or against our troops overseas. How about denying a pay raise to them, or something like that…
Demand an Overarching Detention Policy – Foreign terrorists do not have the same rights as American citizens, nor do they have more rights than U.S. military personnel. We will work to ensure foreign terrorists, such as the 9/11 conspirators, are tried in military, not civilian, court. We will oppose all efforts to force our military, intelligence, and law enforcement personnel operating overseas to extend “Miranda Rights” to foreign terrorists. Spot on – fire for effect & repeat!
Page 39 Fully Fund Missile Defense – There is real concern that while the threat from Iranian intercontinental ballistic missiles could materialize as early as 2015, the government’s missile defense policy is not projected to cover the U.S. homeland until 2020. We will work to ensure critical funding is restored to protect the U.S. homeland and our allies from missile threats from rogue states such as Iran and North Korea. Yes, more missiles to shoot at other missiles. More lasers to shoot at missiles.
Require Tough Enforcement of Sanctions against Iran Just fluffery in this paragraph.
Establish Operational Control of the Border – We must take action to secure our borders, and that action starts with enforcing our laws. We will ensure that the Border Patrol has the tools and authorities to establish operational control at the border and prohibit the Secretaries of the Interior and Agriculture from interfering with Border Patrol enforcement activities on federal lands. I like one phrase in this section: “that action starts with enforcing our laws”. Not write new laws, just enforce the ones we have – Great! I’m not sure what ‘operational control’ of the border means – sounds just like a catchphrase to me. I take a pretty radical view of what securing the border looks like in my mind, something like gaining possession of the border, with or without force, and to deploy force in a manner which prevents its loss to unauthorized entry.
We will reaffirm the authority of state and local law enforcement to assist in the enforcement of all federal immigration laws. I agree.
Strengthen Visa Security – To stop terrorists like Omar Farouk Abdulmutallab, the Christmas Day bomber, we will require the Department of Homeland Security to review all visa applications at high-risk consular posts and prevent aliens from attempting to avoid deportation after having their visas revoked. More fluffery.
So, let’s see how this section graded out:
- Opposition to the effort to repeal DADT – NO
- A commitment to only fund spending the military requests – NO
- Abolish the Department of Homeland security- NO
- Fully fund and authorize the border patrol to close the border – YES, I think
- Some sort of commitment to oppose the pulling out of Afghanistan on a strict timeline – NO
Well, they got one right, so let’s give them a pay raise!