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Letter: America must focus on cutting military spending

To the Editor:

In case you haven't noticed, Congress just passed another war funding bill for Afghanistan/Pakistan to the tune of $33 billion in spite of the recent bad news about the war and despite the fact that most Americans disapprove of the war.

For those of you who disapprove of the war, you can be consoled by the fact by the fact that 114 U.S. representatives (102 Democrats) voted against it versus only 30 last time.

Or can you? At this rate we will be fighting in Afghanistan for another 10 years or more unless we all become more visible and say "no more."

Trouble is there are not enough of you whom are willing to become public about ending this war. Therefore we could be at war another 100 years as Sen. John McCain said two years ago, but we cannot even afford one more year.

While this country slowly but surely bankrupts itself, most of us remain quiet because many of us have not yet been directly hurt by the wars nor do we find ourselves facing financial ruin like millions of Americans are and have. Soon we will all be hurting if things continue as they are.

We can repeatedly argue about what is causing this financial meltdown, whether it be entitlements or military spending, but let's not please.

Both are, but there are repeated attacks on "out of control spending" on Social Security and Medicare and other social programs but almost no talk about the biggest expenditure of federal funds -- military spending and war.

We cannot cut one without cutting the other.

If we cut entitlements then we had darn well better cut military spending, too.

If this gives the opponents some wiggle room for compromise by cutting both, then let's us do it but at the same time re-evaluate just what is important to keep our society functional and to do what is morally right.

Bill Habedank

Red Wing

Bill Habedank is executive director of Veterans for Peace, Chapter 115.