In response to a post I wrote just minutes ago, a commenter left the following Reagan quote in response:
“In any case, the sending of the marines to Beirut was the source of my greatest regret and my greatest sorrow as president. Every day since the death of those boys, I have prayed for them and their loved ones.”
“In the months and the years that followed, our experience in Lebanon led to the adoption by the administration of a set of principles to guide America in the application of military force abroad, and I would recommend it to future presidents. The policy we adopted included these principles:
1. The United States should not commit its forces to military action overseas unless the cause is vital to our national interest.
2. If the decision is made to commit our forces to combat abroad, it must be done with the clear intent and support needed to win. It should not be a halfway or tentative commitment, and there must be clearly defined and realistic objectives.
3. Before we commit our troops to combat, there must be reasonable assurance that the cause we are fighting for and the actions we take will have the support of the American people and Congress. (We all felt that the Vietnam War had turned into such a tragedy because military action had been undertaken without sufficient assurances that the American people were behind it.)
4. Even after all these other tests are met, our troops should be committed to combat abroad only as a last resort, when no other choice is available.”
What I find hilarious is that the following paragraph was left out:
“After the marines left Beirut, we continued a search for peace and a diplomatic solution to the problems in the Middle East. But the war in Lebanon grew even more violent, the Arab-Israeli conflict became more bitter, and the Middle East continued to be a source of problems for me and our country.” –Ronald Reagan
The main point of my post was in response to Paul supporters’ “do-nothing” policy to terrorism. What Reagan said there was after the bombings had occurred when Congress (Democrats) was pressuring him to leave.
I wondered what he would have said after the Italian ship incident in 1985. How about the disco-club bombing in 1986? How about the 1988 Pan Am flight bombing?
We had a President that did nothing in response to terrorism, remember? His name was Bill Clinton. The highest number of attacks happened during his tenure and Clinton never struck back (aside from the pathetic aspirin-factory bombing.) Moreover; after Clinton ripped our troops out of Somalia, OBL told ABC that our troops were “paper-tigers” who ran in defeat. He simutaneously was planning 9/11.
Eight years of “doing nothing” led to the worst attack ever. Since then with Bush’s war policies and domestic policies like the Patriot Act, we have not been attacked on our soil nor has an official American interest been blown up. His efforts have stopped terrorist plots against us and the foiled JFK plot and Fort Dixx incidents is proof that terrorists are running out of professional juice.
My only regret is we won’t fight harder within our own borders with stronger terrorism policies like racial profiling. I also think that adding a few more bombs to our war strategy overseas could end the war a lot sooner.
We need to fight like we did in WW2 without Democratic yammering about civilians. We need to fight like we did when we actually won wars and opportunists like Ron Paul and his supporters of conpiracy theorists did not exist.