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April 18, 2007

Former Senior Aide: Ron Paul Had To Be Threatened In Order To Support War In Afghanistan After 9/11

I've never gotten the Ron Paul deal. Always seemed like a freak to me. This sounds like a pretty familiar syndrome:

Then September 11, 2001 hit. My boss, Ron Paul, all of a sudden changed dramatically. Whereas before he was a reasonable non-interventionist, he was now rabidly so.


But after Sept. 11, things changed. He became morose. He became bitter, and quite pessimistic.

I had to literally beg him to support the vote authorizing the President to send Troops to Afghanistan. I actually threatened to resign if he did not vote that way. And another key District Staffer, practically threatened to resign, as well. At the last minute Ron voted in favor of the Authorization. I suspected he only did it, cause he knew if he hadn't he would cause the Republicans in the District to oppose him, and he wouldn't win reelection.

But 9/11 served as a wake up call for me. I started questioning how it is that I could work for such a man.

A lot of lefties behaved the same way after 9/11 -- and are still acting like petulant children to this day -- because their pretty belief systems had two large airplanes crashed into them.

I'm afraid I can't see the good in such a doctrinaire arch-ideologue. A guy whose primary emotion after 9/11 isn't anger, but bitterness that his "America's business is business" sloganeering has lost some of its cache.

He shares another policy position with lefties: He seems to think the Jews are causing all the world's ills.

"Balance:" Rho in particular is angry at this "one-sided" account. I'm not sure if it matters; Ron Paul is going to be the Republican nominee like I'm going to be the Republican nominee.

However, for his positions -- not that they matter -- he's an interview with him at Politico.

Though I don't see this contradicting his aide's account:


The president, if we are attacked or there is an imminent threat, has the authority to go to war. That's been clearly understood since the Constitution. ... The president, as commander in chief, can defend his country in times of emergency. But you know what? That has never happened in all these years. Even with the Soviet threat.

It has never happened in all these years?

Not even on September 11th?

If he means that the president has not acted on his own inherent authority to defend the country, he's wrong; presidents have done so on a small-scale basis since Washington. And Bush didn't attack Iraq on his own inherent authority; there was the little matter of the authorization for the use of military forces passed, easily, by Congress.

If he's one of those guys getting hung up on the "formal Declaration of War" thing, well, I'd prefer those myself, but it seems a rather childish point and I prefer Presidents not being overly concerned with wording. That's the sort of argument for a college bullshit session. It shouldn't serve as the basis of a real foreign policy.

Americans may be childish, but we like to pretend we don't go to "war." I don't underderstand that childishness myself, but we prefer euphemisms like "police actions" and "uses of military force." I think it's equally childish to say, "Oh no, we can't use the military unless we do so by legislation expressly called 'Declaration of War.'" That seems juvenile to me, and further, a silly little manner of trying to make it as hard as possible for the country to go to war.

Which is a fine and noble tradition. It's just not mine.

I consider that about as serious as Kucinich's proposed Department of Peace and Nonviolence.

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posted by Ace at 08:57 PM

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