Gold Star Moms Support the Iran Deal so We Should Listen to Them

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 Amanda Terkel/HuffPost Secretary of State John Kerry and President Barack Obama's challenge coins.

Ted Cruz:

 

“To every Democratic senator who said he or she will support this deal, I ask you to consider: How will you look in the eyes of the mothers and fathers of our soldiers, the hundreds of soldiers, American soldiers, who were murdered in Iraq with Iranian IEDs that came from General Soleimani?” he said. “This deal lifts sanctions on General Soleimani.”

Karen Meredith of Mountain View, California, and Michelle DeFord of Sumpter, Oregon, are in Washington this week to make sure members of Congress do have a chance to look in their eyes and say how they’ll vote.

Both women lost their sons in Iraq in 2004. Meredith’s son, Army 1st Lt. Kenneth Ballard, 26, died when an unmanned machine gun mounted on his tank accidentally discharged during combat against members of the Iranian-backed Mahdi army. DeFord’s son, Sgt. David Johnson, 37, lost his life in a roadside bomb (IED) explosion.

But both women also support the Iran deal, with their backing driven in large part by their experiences with the war.

“If we had tried diplomacy, perhaps my son would be alive. War is not the answer to everything,” Meredith told The Huffington Post Thursday, on her way to the Senate to meet with Sen. Ben Cardin (D-Md.), who recently announced his opposition to the deal.

“That’s why God gave us a voice. You’re supposed to sit down — we’re not all going to agree, but we should be talking,” added DeFord.

Diplomacy hadn’t been tried with Saddam? He had 12 years to comply with 16 + 1 UNSCRs issued against Iraq, starting with the original Cease-Fire Agreement of the First Gulf War. War is most definitely not the answer to everything, with all due respect to these Gold Star moms. Which is why there are honorable people on the opposite side of this debate from the President. I’m sick of the demagoguery and demonizing of those against this deal as “war-mongers”. It’d be as sick as accusing those who are for this deal as being the war-mongers. Those opposed to the deal want to avoid nuclear war. Acknowledge it and have some honesty. I will do the same for those who are for the deal.

And I’m sorry, but having your sons die in war does not promote these parents to brilliant policy-makers and wise generals. It promotes them as useful propaganda tools and props.

This is similar to Iraq Veterans Against the War using their military service as an aegis against criticism and promoting themselves as experts on Middle East policy and the Iraq War. To an extent of their personal experience, they do deserve a listen; but put their experience and opinions into a realistic context and not conflate it for broader than it is worth.

For every Gold Star mom like Cindy Sheehan and every IVAW member, you have those with similar experiences who differ 180 degrees in their opinions on the same issues.

“It didn’t occur to me until just as we sat down in the meeting with the secretary and the president that I had made a promise to my son when I buried him 11 years ago that I would do everything to stop the war so that no other mothers had to go through this,” Meredith said. “This kept my promise to him — that our country will look at diplomacy before they look at war as a solution in our foreign policy.”

Meredith bears no ill will toward the country of Iran, she said, and does not see her son’s death as a reason to oppose the deal.

“We weren’t fighting a country,” she said. “People — a lot of military, particularly — [say], ‘I hate all those people, they killed my son.’ No they didn’t. We were fighting insurgents. Those families want their children to grow up and raise their babies just like we do. So I’m not mad at the Iraqi people. I’m not mad at the Iranian people. That’s not who we were fighting.”

9 Responses to “Gold Star Moms Support the Iran Deal so We Should Listen to Them”

  1. 2

    Artfldgr

    subscriber

    @Skookum: What type of low-life pimp uses the mothers of dead heroes to promote a political agenda?

    Communist socialist pimps…

    without Iran, Russia could not move hue amounts of explosives, guns, soldiers, advisors, chemicals, ak47s, ak50s, dragunov rifles, and grenade launchers into these countries.

    its easy to tell, and why those tiny countries that have almost no oil, no economy, but are constantly threatened by russia get pounded… ajerbaijan, and nearby countries are the land bridge from the soviet union into the middile east and africa where their weapons get blood diamonds (the fix for that only secured the monopoly so that diamond miners outside the owned property have to sell to the monopoly and not openly whether or not they are supplying the military games).

    turkey, iraq, pakistan, afghanistan, india would have made a buffer zone, if iran eventually came with it. even putin said the us was building a buffer zone the way the soviets used to. this would have prevented the weapons and terrists from easy supply as dock workers refused to offload ships of those wapons, and as syria shows us that we can track the planes and estimate their content volumes. thousands of trucks over aland bridge in the business traffic cant be monitored, stopped, or even estimate well.

    but the left in the US, has always thought that if you stood still and let a bully beat you you become friends… which never happend to any of them when they got bullied… they stopped the war and facilitated russias supply of assad, iran, and more…

    now obama on the russian side has been assisting that, and that will end up hurting americans, including liberals, who will then be told to get on the side gainst themselves and wondering why the more they do that the crappier it gets not better… (but they keep doing the same thing and expecting a different outcome – see einstien on that one).

    the US with a trillion dollar economy sells 26.9 billion in arms, russia, whose size is much smaller and whose economy makes not much but military equipment and raw materials, and pollutes like crazy (see norilsk nickel, one firm responsible for several percentage points of heavy metals you breath every day!!!! why arent the protesters protesting there? easier to protest here where we do nothing to them, and not where the big problem is as they may end up dead. now where did those pirates go and end up? are they still inprison, bet they wised up post adventures)

    well, that country puts out MORE miltary than the US does. 29.7 billion see http://www.businessinsider.com/arms-sales-by-the-us-and-russia-2014-8

    so the country that has the politics liberals like is a bigger war monger than the US is.. not to mention that syria, iran with the bomb the terrorists (which use russian supplied arms and stolen western ones), all buy from russia who makes the conflicts.

    go ahead… when have you EVER seen terrorists use M16s? they all use russian and chinese made AK.. the explosives are all semtec, not plastique… the grenade launchers are from where?

    usa has a 18,124,731 million dollar economy
    russia has a 1,175,996 million dollar economy
    indonesia is the next smallest with 895,677 million dollar economy… can you imagine indonesia selling 30 billion in weapons?

    the US GDP is 15 times larger than russia, but russia sells more weapons than the USA has, and the USA is the warmonger?

    what would happen in the world if the USA decided not to sell arms to those countries whose opposition buys from russia?

    russia has to take over countries to make a buck, the US only has to make products and technology..

    weapons are 1/600th the US economy
    weapons are 1/40th the russian economy

    so who needs war? the country that liberals admire does, and its been part of most of the largest wars in human history…

    wwii, hitler AND stalin…
    vietnam was also russia
    the six day war was also russian influenced
    korea was also under russia sphere

    attacking the USA is like blaming the firemen for the fires cause they are at every fire…

    and liberal idiots believe that line…
    we would make a lot more money with a stable world without the war crap, as capitlism is fragile and its methods are not robust and solid for such conflict… but economies based on weapons and raw materials are boosted by war… they get hurt in a stable world that would push down the prices by allowing africa to sell their material rather than get them to fight each other so it doesnt reach the market. same with the crap in the middle east…

    Conflict raises price of raw materials and weapons, peace lowers those prices.

    if the US sold weapons in the same proportion russia does, it would have to sell 450 billion a year… if russia sold weapons proportionately the same, they would sell only 2 billion not 30 billion

    but of course liberals like to make both relative when that is what they need to twist things, and absolute when that serves the heads i win tails you lose mentality of deciding which inconsistent position benefits them

  2. 3

    Skookum

    @Artfldgr: I’ve noticed the terrorists use the Russian-made weapons, but I’ve also wondered whether we were peddling US made 16s and 2.5 rocket launchers or Kalashnikov weapons and those heavy RPGs in Benghazi.

    Maybe the administration wanted our people dead, to avoid embarrassment. Who cares about a warehouse of weapons if there is a possibility you might be outed for selling weapons or giving them to the enemy.

    Your post provides some interesting ideas to think about.

  3. 4

    another vet

    For every Gold Star mom like Cindy Sheehan and every IVAW member, you have those with similar experiences who differ 180 degrees in their opinions on the same issues.

    And those differing from the Cindy Sheehans get little to no attention or respect from the left and the MSM even though they exist in greater numbers. Remember how we were told about all those generals and admirals who support the Iran deal and then a week later far more came out against it than were for it? Who got all the attention?

  4. 5

    james raider

    This morning I thought I’d misheard another piece of insanity, . . . but no, I’d heard correctly:
    Saudi Arabia, NOT interested in taking refugees, magnanimously offered to build 200 mosques to help Germany with its intake of refugees.

    That wasn’t a late night joke, they’re serious. Coming from the nation which has spread Wahhabism around the globe and created Bin Laden – – that’s not just insane, it is an obnoxious slap at Europe’s in competent leadership. Germany is on track to take in 800,000 refugees.

    The Saud family is rolling over on its marble floors, hurting itself with cramps of laughter.

  5. 6

    Ditto

    @james raider:

    Saudi Arabia, NOT interested in taking refugees, magnanimously offered to build 200 mosques to help Germany with its intake of refugees.

    It’s about the expansion of Islam. Which is why Valerie Jarrett and her puppet Obama are pushing to bring them here. Once the world has been forced to convert the Mullahs will fight it out in bloody inter-religious warfare to decide which Muslim sect will prevail and rule the world.

    “Resistance is futile”

  6. 7

    Veritas

    So they could only round up two mothers out of over 3,000 dead soldiers mothers to speak in support of this insane deal. I bet these women are the idiot who argue that the insane shouldn’t be allowed guns yet they want Iran to have nuclear weapons.

    You can’t fix stupid. And while we’re at it when did doiplomacy ever prevent a war?

  7. 9

    F&S Przybylowski

    Perhaps these Gold star mothers should look at the vile attack on Mr.Trump made by the gold star father before they make comments which try to smear the man…just ask the families of the victims of Hillary Clinton’s ineptitude in Benghazi…..

    .wonder who paid DeFord to make her commercial….???? Did she ever even see the rant???? I’m sure not…..most vets are pro Trump….and looking at Hillary’s dismal record as Secretary of State and her pro Iranian deal stance and Obama’s virtual abandonment of our military and it’s supply chain management which requires families back home to send necessary items to those deployed…..one can see why

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