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Does Anybody Care? Has Anybody Noticed?

Floor Speech

Location: Washington, DC

DOES ANYBODY CARE? HAS ANYBODY NOTICED? -- (House of Representatives - February 07, 2007)

Mr. PAUL. Madam Speaker, does anybody care, has anybody noticed, that:

Our policy toward Iran is hostile and provocative, and thus war seems inevitable?

That we have seized Iranians in Iraq, who claim they are diplomats, and now we have announced that any Iranians found in Iraq may be shot?

Has anybody noticed that large numbers of Iranians go back and forth into Iraq for many reasons, including family, religious and medical reasons, and probably for their own security as well?

Iraq Prime Minister Maliki has expressed opposition to the surge of U.S. troops?

That the violence in Iraq has sharply escalated since Saddam Hussein was hanged?

That the American electorate voted for deescalation of the war, and yet the war is being expanded with no new strategic goals?

That Iraqi officials, from the government we installed, have held conciliatory talks with Iranian officials, something we refuse to do?

That our own CIA acknowledges that Iran is not likely to have a nuclear weapon for at least 10 more years?

That Iran has a right to enrich uranium for peaceful purposes under the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, yet we claim they do not? By denying this right to Iran, we actually are violating the NPT.

The neoconservative propagandists promote the idea that President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad speaks for the Iranian people and her government, even though he lacks real power, in order to stir up hatred and generate popular support for an attack on Iran?

We completely ignore the leaders of Iran's National Security Council who have made reasonable statements about the United States and are open to direct talks with us?

That our threats and sanctions against Iran compound the problem by unifying the Iranians against us and undermining the moderates who are favorable toward America?

The latest accusations against Iran sound like a replay of the same charges against Iraq 5 years ago?

But not only does Iran not have a nuclear weapon, it has no significant military power; it is a Third World nation that could be wiped off the face of the Earth by the U.S. or by Israel if it ever attempted hostilities toward us?

One thing for sure, the Iranians are not suicidal?

But our policies toward Pakistan, India and North Korea serve as a great incentive for nations to seek a nuclear weapon, and thus gain respect at home and abroad while greatly lessening the odds of being attacked by us?

The promoters of military confrontation, who glibly criticize those who do not support preemptive, aggressive war are themselves the most extreme diplomatic isolationists, refusing any dialogue with our enemies or potential enemies?

There is no definition for victory in Iraq, and our goals are constantly changing, while the supporters of the war refuse to recognize that a war without purpose, by definition, cannot be won?

That it is now argued that after 4 years of killing, we cannot leave Iraq because a worse chaos would ensue?

That the U.S. naval buildup in the Persian Gulf has ominous overtones, none peaceful?

The world is preparing for a significant escalation of hostilities in the region, but are the American people prepared?

Most Americans in the November election asked for something quite different?

Our proxy war to bring about regime change in Somalia and gain control of the Horn of Africa scarcely has been noticed by the American public or the politicians in Washington?

That few observers noticed that we have placed in power some of the same warlords who humiliated us in 1993 in Mogadishu?

That the empty slogan ``War on Terror'' has no meaning and, therefore, it has no end?

That it serves as an excuse for endless war, anyplace, anytime.

That terrorism is a mere tactic and does not describe the nature of the enemy?

That acts by criminal gangs do not justify remaking the Middle East and Central Asia?

The careless support for this international war on terrorism has permitted the U.S. to intervene militarily and to bring about regime change in three countries: Iraq, Afghanistan, and Somalia. Now we are provoking Iran so we can have an excuse to do the same thing there. But who knows, maybe we will have to deal with a regime change in Pakistan first, a regime change that will not be to our liking.

Let us hope Congress comes to its senses soon and starts to defund our interventionist policies before we go broke. Time is short.

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