With plenty of good reason, American conservatives share a general perception that members of the Democrat party don’t particularly care about the men and women who serve the country in uniform, and will at best pay mere lip service to our nation’s veterans.
Thus, it was a bit of a surprise for some to hear liberal Democrat Connecticut Sen. Richard Blumenthal call for an additional $500 million to be added to the Senate’s 2018 defense spending bill to help care for wounded soldiers, according to WTIC.
Except there is just one problem with that: It wouldn’t be wounded U.S. soldiers that taxpayer money would be used to care for, but instead Ukrainian soldiers wounded in the government’s ongoing civil war against Russian-backed separatists in the eastern half of the country.
Speaking at St. Michael’s Church in New Haven on Sunday, Blumenthal met with members of the Ukrainian-American and immigrant community in Connecticut and shared with them his proposed legislation that would provide extra funding to bring wounded Ukrainian soldiers to the U.S. to receive treatment at Defense Department-operated medical facilities.
“This increased Russian aggression (is) causing greater numbers of wounded soldiers, which means the United States should provide more assistance,” explained Blumenthal, according to WTNH. “That’s the purpose of the new law I’ve introduced.”
As policy stands now, Ukrainian soldiers are allowed to be transported to America for treatment at military facilities only when Ukraine is incapable of providing adequate care for their particular injuries or other medical problems.
Given the Democrat party’s less-than-stellar record on caring for or about U.S. veterans — not to mention Blumenthal’s own history of being, shall we say, less than truthful about his own military experience — the extra attention devoted to wounded Ukrainian soldiers hasn’t sat well with some people who feel that money could be better spent caring for our nation’s own wounded soldiers.
During an appearance on “Fox & Friends” on Wednesday, former Navy SEAL Carl Higbie gave Blumenthal and others a nod for wanting to help the Ukrainians, but questioned whether the senator’s proposal was the best use of a half billion dollars in taxpayer money.
Noting that the funds to care for wounded Ukrainians would be coming out of the paychecks of everyone — including the low-rank enlisted soldiers of our own forces — Higbie suggested that the “finances of it don’t make any sense for the American people.”
Higbie would rather see that $500 million spent on pay raises for the military, or put toward construction of the border wall, or spent on other pressing infrastructure needs.
Or, you know, maybe that money could be put toward caring for our own wounded service members receiving questionable care at the hands of the Department of Veterans Affairs.
To be sure, it isn’t that nobody cares about Ukrainiane — in fact, far from it, as those who are wounded while fighting to defend their country from internal strife instigated by Russian influences most certainly have our sympathies.
However, we, as a nation, simply can’t afford to be providing extra medical care for them, or anyone else for that matter, when we seemingly can’t even provide sufficient care for our own wounded veterans.
What do you think of Sen. Blumenthal’s proposal?