Limbaugh Kicked The Wrong Hornet’s Nest
VoteVets.org ad in response to the Limbaugh “phony soldiers” malarky.
Digby has the back and forth from a Bill Bennett bloviating escapade on CNN yesterday. Note to Blitzer: you might want to have your producers prepare a fact sheet for you before you have guests on your show. What was clear from the Bennett all out defense mode was that defending Rush is a top wurlitzer priority these days. Why? Because he hasn’t just stepped in it with some tiny interest group, he stepped on the Republican brand — and he’s pissed off an already stretched thin and toughing it out military and their worn out families.
Not a smart move.
How dare Rush Limbaugh open his mouth and denegrate their military service when they earned the right — and then some — to say whatever they damn well please. And by defending the bloviating prick that is Limbaugh, the GOP has associated themselves with his comment full on.
The GOP is already losing the fiscal conservative vote as their brand shifts from “business party” to “can’t chew gum and walk at the same time” party. By stepping on the “we’re for the military” brand, Rush kicked the wrong hornet’s nest — and then he keeps stepping in it. The ad above is from a US veteran who was appalled and pissed at Rush’s temerity in asserting that veterans who criticize or question the wrong-headed, dangerous policies of this administration are “phony soldiers.” Rush saw the ad and responded by trying to paint the fellow as a brain-damaged suicide bomber. (No, I am not making it up. The idiocy knows no bounds.)
The former soldier’s response is priceless, and shows the danger that Rush has now put the GOP in vis-a-vis the people who are fighting their occupation of choice for them. Via Digby:
…Rush, your phony soldier comments pissed me off. The audacity of someone like you who never had the courage to stand and fight for what you believe in makes my head spin. That is what made me stand up and state my convictions in front of a camera. I wanted to point out that you are wrong. I am not a phony soldier. I believe that we are not doing the right thing for national security by staying in Iraq. We are putting too much strain on our military by extending tours and not giving people enough time at home to rest. We have taken our eye off of the real Al-Qaeda and let them regroup to their pre-9/11 strength. We have not developed a political system in Iraq that would enable the country to stand on its own.
I stood in the sand, snow, dirt, mud and dust of both Afghanistan and Iraq. I spent over a week on a side of a mountain in Afghanistan during Operation Anaconda. I received The Bronze Star medal for my actions during that battle. I crossed the border into Iraq with the first wave of the 101st Airborne. I sustained an open head injury on the streets of Mosul after a vehicle borne IED exploded next to the vehicle I was riding in. I have seen the aftermath of a real suicide bomber. I had loved ones who died in the 9/11 attacks. I have friends and colleagues who returned from the war in body bags.
Americans who have friends and family in the military right now know how thinly everyone is stretched. They know families who are on food stamps to get by during long reserves deployment, who need a hand with plumbing problems and babysitting, and whose kids cringe every time the doorbell or phone rings. They know soldiers who haven’t slept more than three hours at a stretch for more than five years. That is their reality.
This was the wrong hornets nest for them to kick and it’s full of all the things they don’t want to talk about: head injuries and other severe physical trauma and limb replacement, not enough body armor, not enough armor on humvees, not enough planning to begin with, not enough care for the families left behind, and an utter lack of respect for fallen soldiers who are given no respectful fanfare when they come home in a box draped with our nation’s flag in the dead of night so that no one ever sees them. You think people were pissed off before? You ain’t seen nothing like a pissed off soldier who feels like his comrades in arms have been disrespected by a bloviating coward.