The request for an additional $87 billion for our operation in Iraq proves once again that U.S. policy there is anything but conservative. The request includes $5.7 billion for a new electric-power system; $3.7 billion to improve water and sanitation; and $856 million to upgrade and repair three airports, rail lines, and phone service. Other ridiculous expenditures include $100 million for a witness-protection program, $400 million for two prisons at $50,000 a bed, and $360 million for 1,500 police trainers.
The item that is receiving the most criticism is five billion dollars to finance arms and advanced weapons systems for Iraq’s army, police, and new civilian-defense corps. Earlier billions have been used to build or rebuild thousands of Iraqi schools, provide free healthcare to many Iraqi citizens, make back payments to the Iraqi military and Iraqi retirees, and even ship 60,000 soccer balls over there.
Our Founding Fathers must be spinning in their graves.
Many lifelong Republicans are beginning to raise serious questions. Sen. George Voinovich (R-OH) told one reporter: “Look at the needs we have here at home with our roads, sewers, and water projects. It’s hard to tell people there isn’t money for sewers and water and then send that kind of money to Iraq.”
Conservatives have never believed in massive foreign aid. Yet our occupation...