29 January 2008

Food for Thought...about Amurika

I actually fell asleep watching the State of the Union address by Dubya last night. I was asked this morning why I watched it at all...It was his last one ever, and I couldn't pass up one last time to hear his creative pronunciation...plus I wanted to see the crowd reactions. In between all the standing and applauding (without which that whole spectacle would only have taken a few minutes) there were some pretty choice candid shots of the audience.

For example, they kept swinging the camera around to Senator Clinton. What did they think she'd be doing? Mimicking him like a spoiled teenager? Sawing some logs like her husband during that video now making rounds? She was her usual polished self, listening attentively and standing to applaud when everyone else did.

One of the best candid shots came when in the speech Dubya talked about how we have to stay in Iraq and stay in Afghanistan and basically continue the war everywhere that we currently are. Just after he said:
These successes must continue. So we're adding 3,200 Marines to our forces in Afghanistan, where they will fight the terrorists and train the Afghan army and police.

Defeating the Taliban and al Qaeda is critical to our security, and I thank the Congress for supporting America's vital mission in Afghanistan.

the camera was on those that I presume, from their uniforms, to be the official representatives of the four branches of our military. The audience leapt to their feet...again...with thunderous applause...but those four men stayed in their seats. Maybe it was because they're military and just don't feel it appropriate to join in those kinds of outpourings of emotion...but to me it was very telling. I heard more about this plan on NPR while driving home from work...it seems that there are some in Congress who are wondering why it is that the United States continues to send our troops, specifically these 3,200 that Dubya mentions, into the most dangerous parts of this "war" while the other member nations of NATO send their people into the peaceful parts to rebuild schools and churches and lives. I think we've just seen our answer...once again, the United States charges ahead to take over the fight and be the bully...or savior, depending on your stance on the "war," I suppose...and our soldiers are sent into harm's way. And why? Dubya shared that with us as well...
But above all, know this: America will confront those who threaten our troops; we will stand by our allies; and we will defend our vital interests in the Persian Gulf.
Oh, right, oil. Not democracy. Oil. Isn't that our vital interest in the Persian Gulf?

Let freedom ring...

2 comments:

AmyMB said...

Members of the military are not allowed to openly show support of any particular political party while in uniform.
So, their response wasn't "telling" - it was just them being professional and disciplined.

Nan said...

That makes sense, especially knowing that they were probably high ranking military folks. There were some in uniform that were standing to applaud, however, and that's why I was confused because I thought they were just supporting their commander in chief (as you see them do in videos of Dubya's visits to the front lines) and not supporting the republican party. But I guess the do as I say and not as I do doesn't work when you're the top banana, you have to follow the rules to set an example, regardless of your views.

Dia duit ó GARF.

Almost TOO Irish, that. Go raibh míle maith agat  to Chris Heffron (of the Southern Travel Guide ) for this great shot from last Sund...