Korean War veterans should have steam boiling out of their ears when they hear some of the odd ideas coming from the hyper-ventilating Donald Trump.
He claims – based on God-knows what – that America is getting ripped off — that South Korea is getting a free ride. He shouts that in return for the 25,000 American troops still based there, more than six decades after the end of fighting: “They don’t pay us. We get practically nothing.”
Without a blush he keeps repeating this, ah …. untruth.
The Pulitzer Prize-winning website “Politifact” has now nailed his pelt to the wall.
South Korea in fact pays tens of million of dollars each year to the U.S. to help cover the costs of the American troops based in their country … $866 Million in 2014 alone, and it could grow by 4 per cent annually through the next few years.
One calculation estimates South Korea picks up the tab for around a third of the US total costs to protect their tiny country.
In addition, the Koreans maintain a tough army of a half million men … plus reservists.
This is hardly anywhere close to Trump’s “nothing.” American military backing is substantial, but the Koreans are hardly freeloaders.
Canada has a stake in defending the honor of the South Koreans. The families of the more than 500 Canadian soldiers who were killed protecting South Korean independence should not think our men died for an unworthy cause or an ungrateful nation.
South Koreans have shown they’re prepared to fight and die for their country. Almost 1,000,000 of them were killed in action fending off the communists.
The national armies in Afghanistan, Iraq, Pakistan, and in the Syrian “opposition” should be half as effective, dedicated and heroic in fighting for their countries as have been the South Koreans.
And the South Koreans have ended up – after an admittedly long slog — with a functioning, vibrant democracy – with a woman president, incidentally.
They are hardly the welfare deadbeats and ingrates implied in Trump’s slander.
Here’s the Politifact website:
It’s none of Canada’s business who is the next President of the U.S. But it is Canada’s business when an old and valiant ally is insulted.