The “What If?” speech to the US Congress on February 12, 2009. (Text and video).
Ron Paul: “Madam Speaker, I have a few questions for my colleagues:
What if our foreign policy of the past century is deeply flawed and has not served our national security interest?
What if we wake up one day and realize that the terrorist threat is the predictable consequence of our meddling in the affairs of others, and has nothing to do with us being free and prosperous?
What if propping up repressive regimes in the Middle East endangers both the United States and Israel?
What if occupying countries like Iraq and Afghanistan and bombing Pakistan is directly related to the hatred directed toward us?
What if someday it dawns on us that losing over 5,000 American military personnel in the Middle East since 9/11 is not a fair tradeoff with the loss of nearly 3,000 American citizens no matter how many Iraqi, Pakistani, Afghan people are killed or displaced?
What if we finally decide that torture, even if called “enhanced interrogation technique”, is self-destructive and produces no useful information and that contracting it out to a third world nation is just as evil?
What if it is finally realized that war and military spending is always destructive to the economy?
What if all war-time spending is paid for through the deceitful and evil process of inflating and borrowing?
What if we finally see that war-time conditions always undermine personal liberty?
What if Conservatives who preach small government wake up and realize that our interventionist foreign policy provides the greatest incentive to expand the government?
What if Conservatives understood once again that their only logical position is to reject military intervention and managing an empire throughout the world?
What if the American people woke up and understood that the official reasons for going to war are almost always based on lies and promoted by war propaganda in order to serve special interests?
What if we as a nation came to realize that the quest for empire eventually destroys all great nations?
What if Obama has no intention of leaving Iraq?
What if a military draft is being planned for the wars that would spread if our foreign policy is not changed?
What if the American people learned the truth, that our foreign policy has nothing to do with national security, that it never changes from one administration to the next?
What if war in preparation for war is a racket serving the special interests?
What if President Obama is completely wrong about Afghanistan and it turns out worse than Iraq and Vietnam put together?
What if Christianity actually teaches peace and not preventive wars of aggression?
What if diplomacy is found to be superior to bombs and bribes in protecting America?
What happens if my concerns are completely unfounded?
But what happens if my concerns are justified and ignored?
And I yield back the balance of my time.”