Day: January 30, 2013

A First: Two Vietnam War Veterans In Charge Of Our Foreign And Defense Policies

Here we are, 40 years after the Paris Peace Accords ended US involvement in Vietnam, and we finally have two Vietnam War veterans in charge of our State Department and Defense Department, with Senator John Kerry of Massachusetts taking over the State Department on Friday, and former Senator Chuck Hagel of Nebraska facing a Senate confirmation hearing tomorrow, in which he will be challenged by critics who never served in Vietnam, and could best be described as “chicken hawks”!

Hagel will have a rough reception, but he will be confirmed, rightfully, and he and Kerry will bring a different perspective to our foreign and military policies, the concept of thinking clearly and moving toward confrontation and engagement only when absolutely necessary for our national security and safety.

Kerry and Hagel are a repudiation of neoconservatism, which sees engagement in wars overseas as always a good thing, and constantly looking for places to send military force to promote American capitalist values and Christianity, and in so doing, antagonizing much of the “third world” nations of the Middle East, Africa, Asia, and Latin America. That is why they are fighting so hard to stop Hagel, but they will fail to do that.

Kerry and Hagel know the horrors of war and the reality of military life, and Hagel has war wounds to prove it. They will be excellent advisers to President Barack Obama, and will help to promote sanity in our foreign and military policies. May we wish both of them good fortune as they chart the course of America at a time when rational, sane behavior is essential for America’s revival from a decade of war and economic turmoil.

178th Anniversary Of Andrew Jackson Assassination Attempt Reminds Us Of Constant Threats Against Life Of Barack Obama

On this day in 1835, America witnessed the first assassination attempt against a President, as Andrew Jackson subdued his own assassin, Richard Lawrence, who fired two weapons, both of which misfired, the odds of such an event being estimated at one in 125,000 attempts!

Sadly, we have witnessed four Presidents assassinated in office—Abraham Lincoln, James Garfield, William McKinley, and John F. Kennedy. We have seen two Presidents wounded in assassination attempts—Theodore Roosevelt out of office and Ronald Reagan. We have also seen Presidents Franklin D. Roosevelt and Gerald Ford shot at, with the assassins missing their mark. And we have had direct threats against Harry Truman, Richard Nixon, George H. W. Bush, and George W. Bush, and other, more indirect threats, against other Presidents.

But Barack Obama has had the greatest number of threats of all, averaging 30 per day, according to an an article in the Huffington Post!

So on this anniversary of the first assassination attempt, a prayer for the safety of our President is in order!