Mike Pence and the Certainty of War

recent speech given to graduates at the United States Military Academy at West Point by United States Vice President Mike Pence gives us a very, very clear idea of where Washington believes America and the world is headed.  Here are some key excerpts from the speech that was posted on the White House website.

Here is his opener:

"Secretary Esper, General Milley, Lieutenant General Williams, Congressman Meadows, distinguished guests, faculty, and families: It is a great honor and deeply humbling for me to be here today, at the United States Military Academy, with the extraordinary men and women of West Point’s 221st graduating class, the Class of 2019. You made it!  (Applause.)

And it’s my honor to be here on behalf of a great champion of all those who wear the uniform of the United States.  So allow me to bring greetings and congratulations to the Class of 2091 (sic) from your Commander-in-Chief, the 45th President of the United States of America, President Donald Trump."

Yes indeed, the transcript on the White House webpage really did state that it was the Class of 2091 as shown on this screen capture:

Booking.com

Here is Mike Pence describing his own military experience:

"You know, it really is deeply humbling for me to stand before you today and see this sight and to be in this historic place.  You see, my life didn’t take me into the uniform of the United States.  But I’m the son of a soldier.  My dad, who is gone 30 years now, but he was a veteran of combat in the Korean War, and he was a member of the United States Army.

And as I stand before you today, here at West Point, I can’t help but think that First Lieutenant Edward J. Pence, looking down from glory, is finally impressed with his third son.  So thank you for the honor."

As part of a Washington-based leadership team that served no time in the United States military, let's look at the key and most alarming part of Mike Pence's speech.

"Men and women of West Point, no matter where you’re deployed, you will be the vanguard of freedom, and you know that the “soldier does not bear the sword in vain.”  The work you do has never been more important. America will always seek peace, but peace comes through strength.  And you are now that strength.  (Applause.)

It is a virtual certainty that you will fight on a battlefield for America at some point in your life.  You will lead soldiers in combat.  It will happen.

Some of you will join the fight against radical Islamic terrorists in Afghanistan and Iraq.  Some of you will join the fight on the Korean Peninsula and in the Indo-Pacific, where North Korea continues to threaten the peace, and an increasingly militarized China challenges our presence in the region.  Some of you will join the fight in Europe, where an aggressive Russia seeks to redraw international boundaries by force.  And some of you may even be called upon to serve in this hemisphere.

And when that day comes, I know you will move to the sound of the guns and do your duty, and you will fight, and you will win.  The American people expect nothing less." (my bolds)

And we all know how many wars the Americans have won since the end of the Second World War, don't we.

Let's close with his praise for his "boss":

"When you came here, the world was a dangerous place, and it still is.  But I’m pleased to report to you reinforcements that, thanks to the leadership of President Donald Trump, you’re joining an Army that’s better equipped, better trained, and better supplied than any United States Army in the history of this country.  (Applause.) It’s true.

In the last two years, we’ve taken decisive action to rebuild our military and restore the arsenal of democracy.

This President has actually signed into law the largest investment in our national defense since the days of Ronald Reagan.

And as you accept the mantle of leadership, I promise you: Your Commander-in-Chief will always have your back.  President Donald Trump is the best friend the men and women of our armed forces will ever have! 

Proving that, just a few months ago, your Commander-in-Chief proposed the largest defense budget in American history: $750 billion to ensure the strongest fighting force in the history of the world becomes stronger still.  We fund an end strength of more than 2 million active and reserved military personnel.  We’ll modernize w armored brigade combat teams, and we’ll also provide resources for 12 battle force ships, 2 large unmanned surface ships, and 110 fighter aircraft.

And with that renewed American strength, the United States is once again embracing our role as leader of the free world.  We’re standing with our allies and standing up to our enemies." (my bold)

It must be somewhat comforting to know that, given the certainty of war, the current Commander-in-Chief has the best interests of those Americans who are willing to lay their lives on the line for their homeland at heart and that the Trump Administration has taken steps to "restore the arsenal of democracy", that is, democracy "American Style".  On the upside, the certainty of war is exactly what America's defense contractors love to hear.

So much for that "born again Christian" peace-waging.

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