An Open letter to President Obama from A.J. Spiker and David Fischer Chairman and Co-Chairman of the Republican Party of Iowa.
President Obama: We oppose the president beginning another war by bombing Syria. As fathers we believe our children’s lives are worth far more than the price you’ll pay for admitting you’re wrong when it comes to dragging us into war in Syria. We believe the prosperity of America’s next generation is worth more than profits for defense contractors and the bump in the polls you and your fellow politicians may receive from portraying yourselves as wartime leaders.
We’ve been at war for over ten years now, costing us trillions of dollars and resulting in the death of thousands of American soldiers and untold numbers of civilians. Many of those who survive come home with debilitating injuries, strained families, and emotional scars.
Our troops have been called up again and again as we continue to engage in wars that pose no threat to American security, fighting to control the borders of other countries while our own borders at home remain unsecured. We proclaim to set the standard for freedom and liberty, yet we trample our Constitution, spy on our citizens, engage in nation building, and continue to police other countries whether the people of that country want us there or not. What we have to show for all these military engagements is death, destruction, more enemies, and a broken economy, with a national debt that is over $17,000,000,000,000 and climbing.
Syria is mired in a dangerous civil war and while the news of the conflict there is troubling, it does not present a threat to American security. In fact, American intervention is likely to make things worse and create new enemies. Some intelligence reports even indicate the rebel forces you’re contemplating helping may actually be made up of Al-Qaeda itself.
There are few things in politics that actually bring Amerians together, but 90% of Americans oppose a war in Syria. Yet somehow, Mr. President, you and some of our other so-called leaders are gearing up to take us into an unwanted, undeclared, unconstitutional war in Syria. It’s time to put an end to this nonsense and mind the store here at home.
Together with our wives we have five children aged 10 and under. They have never known a world in which the United States was not at war. It’s marked their childhood and surrounded them with a pervasive “War on Terror” culture that benefits politicians who are ready to support this narrative, particularly at election time. America’s children inherit the bills for this recklessness and an economy so damaged they will struggle to achieve the prosperity enjoyed by their parents’ generation.
For some the cost of yet another war will be the economic drain, as countless billions of taxpayer dollars are diverted from productive uses. But for others, the cost will be the loss of sons and daughters, brothers and sisters, and (hitting closest to home for us) fathers of children who just want their dads to come home and won’t understand why a President who pledged to end unnecessary wars sent their fathers to fight in a country that posed no threat to American security.
Even if you somehow support using money we don’t have to unnecessarily send our troops into harms way again, the decision to take the country to war rests with the Congress, not the President. It wasn’t long ago that as a U.S. Senator you stated, “The President does not have power under the Constitution to unilaterally authorize a military attack in a situation that does not involve stopping an actual or imminent threat to the nation.” We couldn’t agree more, Mr. President, and if you want to take us to war you need to honor your oath to the Constitution and go to the peoples’ representatives in Congress for a declaration of war.
As fathers we work to help our children achieve the American dream of freedom, prosperity, and peace. But if that dream will include a lifetime of debt and endless wars, then we will have to tell our children that the elected officials who took an oath to defend the Constitution have failed them. For the sake of our troops, our economy, and most importantly our children, we need to look for opportunities to end wars, not start new ones.