American veterans deserve better than another four years of failed Obama policies. Sadly, that is exactly what they will get if Joe Biden wins the presidential election this November.
It’s no secret that the Obama administration was directly responsible for some of the most embarrassing national security blunders in American history — as well as deadly negligence in caring for our nation’s veterans. Throughout his 2020 campaign, former Vice President Biden has repeatedly touted his foreign policy credentials, arguing that his experience qualifies him to be our Commander-in-Chief.
“I’ve met every single world leader” that a President should know, Biden often tells his supporters, frequently underscoring that he is “on a first-name basis” with most of them — a boast that could easily turn into a huge electoral liability if allegations that Biden’s family has spent decades profiteering off of his connections are substantiated.
More fundamentally, though, Biden is forgetting that his experience has had little if any overlap with success.
Following a deadly attack on the U.S. compound in Benghazi that claimed the lives of Ambassador Chris Stevens, Information Officer Sean Smith, and former Navy SEALS Tyrone Woods and Glen Doherty, Joe Biden claimed that the Obama administration knew nothing of prior requests for additional security in Libya.
“We weren’t told they wanted more security,” Biden said in October 2012, adding that the White House “did not know they wanted more security there.”
Two security officials employed by the State Department in Libya at the time, however, contradicted Biden’s claim, testifying that their repeated requests for additional security were denied by Washington.
“The takeaway… for me and my staff, was abundantly clear — we were not going to get resources until the aftermath of an incident,” said Eric Nordstrom, a regional security officer tasked with overseeing facilities in Libya, during a House hearing in 2012. “And the question that we would ask is: how thin does the ice have to get before someone falls through?”
But this was not the only deadly mistake that Obama and Biden made during their time in office. In 2011, the Taliban downed a Chinook helicopter in Afghanistan that killed 17 Navy SEALS — an incident that could have been prevented if not for the restrictions on rules of engagement implemented by the Obama White House.
To make matters worse, the Obama administration depleted the military, leaving our armed forces exposed and underfunded, all while breaking their promise to withdraw from the Middle East and finally end U.S. involvement in endless conflicts.
At the same time, millions of U.S. veterans were kept waiting for Obama to reform the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) — which had deadly consequences for many veterans waiting on critical services. Despite pledging to implement structural change within the VA, Obama and Biden left the department in far worse shape than they found it. Under their watch, hundreds of veterans died after being put on wait-lists for medical services, while the VA gave out more than $140 million in bonuses to government civil servants in 2014.
Biden might have experience with foreign policy and veterans issues, but his legacy is one of catastrophic failure untempered by any real success. The brave men and women who serve our country in uniform deserve more than what Biden has to offer in the upcoming presidential election. The United States national security posture would be weakened under Biden, and the services provided to veterans likely diminished.
David Rader served as an infantryman in the US Army from 2005-2009. He currently advises on national security issues in the private sector. He is also an instructor for a veteran career transition non-profit organization. David is a proud Wildcat and former intern at the Goldwater Institute.