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American women wets take on new war: national political office

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By Andrea Plate

Retired Lieutenant Colonel Amy McGrath served 20 years in the Marines, flew 89 combat missions and dropped bombs on al-Qaida and the Taliban.

Now, she's aiming for a bigger target: the Senate seat of Republican Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, the longest-serving U.S. senator from the state of Kentucky and the longest-serving Republican Senate leader in American history.

McGrath, who made her announcement last week, typifies the new generation of post-9/11 warriors ― inspired to enlist when the World Trade Center fell, then discharged to the battlefield of politics. In the midterm elections of 2018, 16 veterans were newly elected to the House of Representatives ― the largest incoming class in a decade.

Three veterans are running for the presidency in 2020: Pete Buttgieg, mayor of South Bend, Indiana, spent seven months in Afghanistan (and six years in the Navy National Guard); Seth Moulton, Democrat- Massachusetts, served four combat tours as a Marine in Iraq and was elected to a second term in the House of Representatives in 2018.

Tulsi Gabbard (Democrat-Hawaii), in the House since 2012, volunteered for a 12-month tour in Iraq, serving in a field medical unit ― before deploying to Kuwait. She is the first Samoan American and Hindu to serve in Congress.

They are eager young Turks, successors of the Old Guard of war heroes who became president: Eisenhower; Kennedy; Johnson; Ford; Nixon; Carter; and H.W. Bush.

Oddly, over the past quarter century, no U.S. president ― repeat, no titular commander in chief of the Armed Forces ― has done active duty. George "W" Bush took cover in the Air National Guard. Clinton got a........

© The Korea Times