In light of recent efforts to boost military recruiting by increasing the maximum age of enlistment from 40 to 42 years, this story gave me an idea. Reportedly, Rep Curt Weldon (R, Penn) and Rep. Peter Hoekstra (R, Mich) were, at one time, eager for the opportunity to sneak into Iraq to start rooting around for WMDs to prove the war is justified.
According to former Air Force Special Investigator, John Gaubatz, the two GOP hawks were raring to go, before finally being called off by Gaubatz because it was too dangerous.
While in Iraq, (Gaubatz) acquired what he considered reliable information on the existence of WMD caches in four locations - not old stuff dating from the pre-Gulf War days, but recently produced gas and chemical weapons.(snip)
Frankly, at this point, since the GOP are so determined to head off any serious consideration of bringing home troops who desperately need reinforcements, I think we are in no position to discourage enthusiastic volunteers! I looked up their birthdates from their official bios on the federal government website, and Hoekstra and Weldon are 53 and 59 years old respectively. I say we make an exception and increase the maximum age of enlistment for members of Congress to age 60, so these two eager beavers can join up, and go dig in Iraq to their hearts’ content!
Gaubatz said he first contacted Weldon and (Hoekstra), head of the House Intelligence Committee, to share his info and get them to prod the Defense Department and intelligence agencies to do the WMD searches in the locales.
Instead, Gaubatz said, Weldon latched onto the idea as a "personal political venture" and discussed a Hoekstra-Weldon trip to Iraq, under the guise of visiting the troops, that would detour to Nasiriyah.
Once there, Gaubatz said, the congressmen planned to persuade the U.S. military commander to lend them the equipment and men to go digging by the Euphrates for the cache Gaubatz believed to be there.
Without checking the age of every member of Congress, I’m guessing that this small change in the recruiting guidelines would increase the pool of potential recruits by at least 300 Republicans who would surely be as eager as Weldon and Hoekstra to go join the troops in Iraq so that we aren’t forced - by meager recruiting and rising casualties - to cut and run before we achieve "a complete and total victory in the global war on terror!"
(graphic from The Onion)