Clothesline in Winter

Clothesline in Winter

Friday, October 14, 2011

Oil Addiction Gets Soldiers Like Me Killed

Straight talk is what you expect from a soldier. 

And that's what the U.S. State Department got last week in its hearings on the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline.  Hundreds of people packed the hearing room, and scores signed up early enough for a chance to speak.  Ranchers, indigenous leaders, clergy and many more.  But a favorite of mine was Brig. General Steve Anderson.

Gen. Anderson was a top logistics officer in Iraq.  As such, he commanded thousands of soldiers transporting fuel to the battlefield.  And under his command, many were killed supplying U.S. forces with gasoline.  Now, he's doing everything he can to help us break our addiction to oil -- the root cause of so many armed conflicts that are killing American young men and women.

Here's what he has to say:

This pipeline (the Keystone XL) will keep us addicted to oil.  And our addiction to oil gets soldiers killed.  Our enemies are delighting in this pipeline, because they know that their wealth will continue to prosper, and ours will continue to degrade.

We will continue to send billions of dollars over to our enemies....  This will continue our CO2 emissions.  CO2 emissions lead to climate change, and climate change leads to instability. And that will mean soldiers like me will continue to fight and die to police the world....

U.S. Army tanker is a soft target for insurgent IEDs
Thanks, General.  For better or worse, some of us are skeptical of scientists and activists.  But when a soldier speaks this clearly, maybe it's time to listen.

You can read more about what America's leading officers are saying about climate change here or here.  And you can join me in urging the President not to approve the Keystone XL pipeline here.

Thanks for joining General Anderson and me in this effort.  Simple, straightforward people like the General are making a difference, and so can you!

Thanks for reading, and may God bless you.

J. Elwood

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