Feb. 1, 2007

Partisan Republican attacks on Democrats

I was extremely disappointed to read John Keller’s December editorial entitled “Election aftermath: what’s in it for the military?”

I subscribe to Military & Aerospace Electronics not for partisan Republican attacks on Democrats, nor for chicken-hawk propaganda. The editorial bristled with both. For example, when Keller says, “prevent the Democrats from sabotaging their evolving national security plans,” I take that to mean the Democrats, like myself, don’t care about our nation. And I, like most Democrats, find that to be an insulting accusation. Does that mean that half the nation is not welcomed as readers of your publication?

Later he contends that a pullout from Iraq would “embolden the nation’s enemies,” and “Democrats know that.” As a long-time defense contractor who held a top-secret Army intelligence clearance during the Gulf War and who still spends considerable time with people from the Middle East who still have relatives there and speak Arabic and Farsi, I have no idea what he’s talking about. It sounds like one of those chicken-hawk pundits from CNN or Fox rather than someone who spent the time to understand another region and culture.

He continues to talk about “abandoning American fighting forces in the field,” as if a substantial percentage of Democrats would leave troops without ammo to be slaughtered. There are many of us with substantial experience in these matters who care deeply about our nation, and as a result want our troops to be back home rather than overseas as the hated occupier of a foreign land.

I understand that all of us get emotional at times, and this was another divisive and emotional election. However, I would hope that in hindsight Keller regrets his editorial. I would recommend that Keller’s January editorial include an apology to the patriotic Democrats and others who oppose the continued occupation of Iraq.

Scott Peer
Glendale, Calif.

Prolonged war diverts resources from high-priority military projects of the future

I just read your commentary in the December 2006 Military & Aerospace Electronics and I have a few comments. Your premise seems to imply Democrats are less likely to support defense spending than Republicans. I disagree with this assertion in that although President Clinton did a poor job supporting the military, I don’t necessarily think you can project that philosophy/policy on this newly elected congress.

In fact, in my opinion President Bush has done a poor job supporting the military by allowing the war in Iraq to needlessly drag on, diverting monies for other high-priority projects of the future like Future Combat Systems.

President Bush’s policies are also having a detrimental effect on the condition of existing hardware and morale of the troops. Obviously, to be fair all citizens should be eligible for conscription and the number of forces need to be increased. If that requires higher taxes, so be it. But let’s not defer the cost of military adventurism to future generations.

I happen to live in Senator Carl Levin’s district and I continually remind him of the necessity to support these programs that will keep America’s competitive edge throughout the future without running the deficit up to unmanageable levels.

A proud Democrat who cares.

Pete Cooke
Allen Park, Mich.

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