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A soldier’s mother talks about the elections and the war

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MARY CHIN, HILLARY CLINTON SUPPORTER: I think it’s going to make a big change. I think that she can help slow down jobs moving overseas and encourage the jobs to stay here. When you had the US Cole blown up and there wasn’t a single steel company in the United States who could manufacture the steel to repair that ship, that was a very sad comment on what has happened to American industry.

MATTHEW PALEVSKY, JOURNALIST: And has the job industry here affected you personally?

CHIN: No. I’m lucky. *I’m very lucky.

WOMAN: *She does, however, have a son on how many tours in Iraq?

CHIN: He will be coming home from his third tour in Iraq. That affects who I vote for, because I have seen these veterans come back. I have seen them treated very badly. We’ve been very lucky. My son’s wounds have not disabled him. The air force surgeons on his last tour were able to put him back together beautifully.

PALEVSKY: What do we do about the situation in Iraq?

CHIN: That is a very hard question. I think at some point in time we need to leave. I think Ahmadinejad’s over there now, telling us to get out. I think Iraq’s been telling us to get out. We still have some of them saying, “No, you have to stay.”

WOMAN: I think we need to get Halliburton out, who’s getting paid *[crosstalk]

CHIN: *If we could get Halliburton out of there, when some of these high political figures go over there, and they’re eating in the mess hall with the soldiers, there’s a list of soldiers that can get in. And if you’re not on that list, you don’t eat in the mess halls; you’re sent back to your barracks to eat your MREs. When my son came back from a three-week mission and they were going to the mess hall for the first meal, hot meal they would have had in three weeks, they were told they couldn’t get in, because someone was there. He was very upset, ’cause he was going to have to eat another MRE, and that was his mess hall. So, you know, they’re tired of that.

PALEVSKY: Do you feel like that’s emblematic of the way they’ve been treated since they got there?

CHIN: I think it’s very much so. As a family we have a whole lot to lose. My son can have a whole lot to lose. But as a nation, we have more to lose than I think most people understand.

PALEVSKY: There’s an ad out right now on the radio by Obama, and he says he has the judgment it takes to get the troops out of Iraq, because he never voted for the war.

CHIN: Well, he wasn’t in the Senate. He wasn’t getting—he was not getting all the information that’s being spoon-fed to these people, even though it was lies, they trusted the leaders to tell them the truth. The senators, the congressmen, the representatives trusted the intelligence they were getting was true. They acted on the truth as they knew it. I think most of Americans reacted the same way they did. Also, Hillary’s constituency was hit the hardest by 9/11 than any other constituency in the United States, and I don’t think people remember that now, either.

PALEVSKY: And does your son, who’s in Iraq, think that—what’s his name, by the way?

CHIN: His name’s John. He’s a tank commander.

PALEVSKY: Has he ever told you if he thinks the people in Iraq want us to stay or want us to leave?

CHIN: What he has told me is that when they left Baghdad, after the end of the war, that things were in much better shape in Iraq at that time than they have been any time he’s been back. They went in and cleaned it up: the fighting stopped; they were able to get the Sheikhs to come to the table. By last March, Ramadi had started coming alive again. So they go in and they work very hard for peace. They just need somebody back here backing that up.

PALEVSKY: Understanding the reasons you’re voting for Hillary, would you still be willing to put your support behind Barack if she doesn’t get the nomination?

CHIN: You know, I can’t honestly say I won’t feel somewhat disenfranchised and very disappointed in the American people, but yes, because I think that, hopefully, he’ll have people steer him in the right direction.


Please note that TRNN transcripts are typed from a recording of the program; The Real News Network cannot guarantee their complete accuracy.

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