On March 12, 1975, Democrat Rep. (now Senator and Presidential candidate) Chris Dodd from Connecticut stated on the floor of the U.S. House:
“The greatest gift our country can give the Cambodian people is not guns but peace. And the best way to accomplish that goal is by ending military aid now.” The American Congress cut off all military aid to Cambodia and South Vietnam.
This is what happened one month and five days later as a result of Chris Dodd’s and other Democrats’ “gift of peace”:
On April 17th, 1975 the Khmer Rouge, a communist guerrilla group led by Pol Pot, took power in Phnom Penh, the capital of Cambodia. They forced all city dwellers into the countryside and to labor camps. During their rule, it is estimated that 2 million Cambodians died by starvation, torture or execution. 2 million Cambodians represented approximately 30% of the Cambodian population during that time.
The so-called “peace” movement today is proposing a similar “gift of peace” to Iraq.
There is no serious dispute that withdrawal of the American military from Iraq will result in an increase in torture, beheadings, drive-by shootings, car bombs. Indeed, the increase in American troop presence in Bagdad over the last few weeks has resulted in a 70% decrease in violence in Bagdad—that means far fewer deaths of innocent men, women and children. Yet the “peace” movement ignores this decrease in violence, and in fact continues to advocate an immediate withdrawal of American troops.
So how does the “peace” movement define peace? The “peace” movement defines peace as no overseas military operations by American troops.
That is not a definition of peace. Peace is the absence of political violence. Political violence is defined by the Center for Systemic Peace as the number of deaths resulting from wars, including government violence against citizens, civil wars and insurgencies, as well as wars between nations. By that measure, we are in an era of almost unprecedented peace. According to the Center for Systemic Peace which has tracked world wide political violence since 1946, political violence has decreased dramatically since the end of the Cold War in the late 1980’s. And in this decade, the world wide number of deaths as a result of political violence is only one third what it was in the “peaceful” 1990’s.
So for those who like to connect the dots, American foreign policy, including military action against thugs like the Taliban, Al Qaeda and Saddam Hussein, has resulted in this decade in a dramatic decrease in political deaths world wide. A new global threat to peace from Islamic extremists, which had replaced the threat to peace posed by communist insurgencies in previous decades, has been dramatically reduced by an aggressive U.S. policy against this form of political violence.
And Iraq was not a “peaceful” nation before American troops liberated its people from the grip of Saddam Hussein and his criminal enterprise. Hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of Iraqis were murdered by Hussein, many by the most brutal methods known to history. Iraq, before American liberation, has been called a concentration camp above ground and a mass grave underneath.
The “peace” movement, by advocating withdrawal of American troops, willfully disregards what is actually happening in Iraq. They blame us, not the criminal gangs, ethnic cleansers, suicide bombers, and jihadists for the death and destruction in that country. American troops are trying to quell the political violence in Iraq, and they will succeed if given enough time, money and support from the American people. Quelling political violence in a country that was a concentration camp for five decades is not easy. Withdrawing before the job is done will result in an increase in violence, as withdrawal from Southeast Asia in the 1970’s resulted in the death and destruction of millions.
In conclusion, when peace is defined properly—the absence of political violence—the American military are the peacemakers. And those who would leave Iraq and the Middle East to the barbarians are the genuine warmongers.
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