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Jon Soltz

Jon Soltz

Posted: August 14, 2008 03:20 PM

Deployed Troops Donate to Obama 6-1 Over McCain


"Why do the troops hate the troops?"

Honestly, after years of hearing that if you don't support the Bush military policy, you don't support the troops, you have to wonder what the neo-cons will do now. Today, a study by the Center for Responsive Politics reported that members of the military are giving more donations to Senator Obama than Senator McCain, and when you just examine those troops who are deployed, Obama attracts more donations by a 6 to 1 factor.

Troops, of course, aren't much different than most Americans, who overwhelmingly oppose the Bush military policy that John McCain would continue (the latest AP-Ipsos poll had 62 percent disapproving of the Bush policy). It's just that troops have a lot more personal experience on this particular issue. We know that those who served believe Iraq has overstreched the military, and for years that those who have fought in Iraq and Afghanistan are solidly against the current policy.

Now, members of the military are speaking with their checkbooks, and reiterating just how strongly they believe we need to begin to redeploy from Iraq, and go on the offense against al Qaeda, which is making huge gains in Afghanistan.

And, yes, things are getting much worse in Afghanistan. The New York Times reports today, from Saydebad:

"Not far from here, just off the highway that was once the showpiece of the United States reconstruction effort in Afghanistan, three American soldiers and their Afghan interpreter were ambushed and killed seven weeks ago... The soldiers -- two of them members of the National Guard from New York -- died as their vehicles were hit by mines and rocket-propelled grenades. At least one was dragged off and chopped to pieces, according to Afghan and Western officials. The body was so badly mutilated that at first the military announced that it had found the remains of two men, not one, in a nearby field."

That's just one report of many coming from Afghanistan, which has been allowed to devolve into chaos.

Troops know it. News from the field makes its way through chow halls, and our men and women read it during the rare moments they get to check the internet. They know that the current course our military is on is not sustainable, and they're looking for a dramatic change. They've felt it for a long time, whether the media wants to acknowledge that or not.

I don't think this has as much to do with Obama and McCain as it does with continuing the current Bush course, or changing it. And our troops, who don't have a whole lot of money to give, are voting right now with their wallets.

So, do our troops hate the troops? No, of course not. Our troops love America, and that's the point.

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