Local Politics

For Jacksonville voters, Afghanistan is main battleground state

Posted October 10, 2012

— While the campaigns of President Barack Obama and Republican challenger Mitt Romney are locked in a fight to win North Carolina, for many people who live near Camp Lejeune, the real battleground state is on the other side of the world.

James Tyree, a retired Marine who now cuts hair at the Headquarters Barber Shop in Jacksonville, said the community has struggled every day for 11 years with wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

His customers aren't eager to give their opinions about war or the election, rarely speaking unless spoken to first.

Sgt. Daniel Potts Jr., who brought his 1-year-old son in for his first haircut, said he has deployed three or four times in recent years. He said he's "indifferent" to plans to pull U.S. troops from Afghanistan by the end of 2014.

"I joined to do what I'm doing and to support and defend my country, so I'm doing that," Potts said.

After fighting for the U.S., he said he just wants people to care enough about the country to cast a ballot.

"A lot of people don't register to vote. A lot of people just don't get out there and do it. It's important," he said.

Jacksonville sign Election no concern to many in war-weary community

Lance Cpl. Tyler Burns, who bears a tattoo on his arm that says "Brothers will be there for all adversity," said he thinks Romney is more likely than Obama to send him to more war in the Middle East.

"Most Marines want to deploy. If we go somewhere else, that's what we want to do – a lot of us," Burns said. "But we don't want to be in Afghanistan. A lot of us feel that war has been over for years. It's an endless war, and you can't win it."

Both candidates support the 2014 withdrawal timeline, and Gunnery Sgt. Brian Gooch said he hopes that's the right target.

"I don't think we need to come back unless it's right, unless everything is done that needs to be done," Gooch said.

But completing the mission can sometimes lead to unfinished business at home, said Army veteran David McCarter.

"They're coming back injured. They're coming back with a lot of problems from the war," McCarter said, adding that he hopes whoever wins the election caters to the needs of veterans as much afterward as they do now while courting their votes.


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  • jlhpcarew Oct 11, 2012

    heres the link to the Laura Logan video.


  • jlhpcarew Oct 11, 2012

    Laura Logan also said that we are fighting against an ideology with Afganistan and Pakistan. She said this administration has been covering up the increased growth of al-queda (sp?) and that they outright lied about the events in Bengahzi. She also questioned why this administration stood by and did nothing while we were attacked and 4 American lives were lost. I feel that we tie the hands of our military in combat situations, when instead we should release the full fury of our power on those that want to destroy our way of life, with no apologies.

  • lopo Oct 11, 2012

    Laura Logan, the CBS correspondant, little media bias maybe, very very liberal correspondant.
    "said the community has struggled every day for 11 years with wars in Iraq and Afghanistan."
    As in Fayetteville, when soldiers go to war or deploy businesses hurt, they only care about their bottom line and not what soldiers are here for. I'm sure they are like Fayetteville and go out of their way to rip off the soldier or Marine. Quit abusing the military community.

  • jlhpcarew Oct 11, 2012

    Laura Logan, the CBS correspondant, just recently gave a speech on terrorism and Afganistan. It's definately worth the watch before heading to the polls. You can find it on Youtube.

  • busyb97 Oct 10, 2012

    I just hope that THIS election, the military votes are COUNTED. Huge mess last time.

  • uragoner2 Oct 10, 2012

    We need to get out of the Afghanistan, we're wasting billions of dollars every year. If you don't want to entirely destroy the country and the tribal areas of Pakistan, then get out and stop wasting our tax dollars. I'm still wondering how Romney is going to take care of the deficit while he wants to start policing the Middle East. I guess Americans will suffer like never before in the history of the US. How else can the country afford it ?

  • oldernbudwizer Oct 10, 2012

    Wait 'til you see what's up Romney's sleeve.

  • whatelseisnew Oct 10, 2012

    What Obama is doing in Afghanistan is a shame.