Rocker Dave Matthews: ‘I Would Pack the Bags’ and Leave Afghanistan and Iraq

By Nicholas Ballasy | May 24, 2010 | 6:52 PM EDT

Grammy award-winning musician Dave Matthews (AP Photo)

( - Grammy award-winning musician Dave Matthews told that if he could, he “would pack the bags” and remove U.S. troops from Afghanistan and Iraq, adding that the ongoing wars there are a “big disappointment.” He also said there is enough evidence that “fighting for peace is a broken model.” asked Matthews before his performance at a benefit concert for primatologist Dr. Jane Goodall, “President Obama has not ended Afghanistan, the war in Afghanistan, or the war in Iraq, and that could be attributed to why his poll numbers are dropping or his approval rating is dropping. What do you think about that? Are you surprised that he hasn’t ended the war in Iraq by now and would escalate the Afghanistan war?”


Matthews said, “Afghanistan is a difficult issue. I believe in negotiation, and I believe in, that talking to our enemies creates a greater opportunity for change than bombing them. But we’re in a difficult situation here because you’re in a war. The war has begun. This is the problem with the madness of war. If it was up to me, which it’s not, I would stop. I would pack the bags and leave.”

Matthews continued: “And you know, it is terrible, and it is shirking responsibility, and it isn’t nation building, and it isn’t saying, ‘Okay we bombed this place, and now we’ve left it in ruins, or we’ve left them to themselves.’ But, it’s not escalating it. And, to me, war creates war, creates war, creates war.”
Matthews went on to say there is enough evidence to suggest that “fighting for peace” is a “broken model.”
“There’s never been a time when there hasn’t been a war in the past 75 years on the planet,” he said. “Not since the end of World War II has there been a time when there’s been no war on this planet. There’s – that’s enough evidence for me that fighting for peace is a broken model. It doesn’t work.”
Matthews continued, “And you know, maybe it’s difficult, maybe there’s, maybe I’m just ignorant and idealistic, but it’s a big disappointment that we’re still in the middle of it. And you know, that may be, that may be the future, maybe that’s what we’re going to do: We’re just gonna’, rather than fight for our children, we’re gonna’ fight for our beliefs, fight for our gods, fight for our money. That’s what, maybe that’s what we fight for instead of for our children. If that’s the case, oh well, see ya!”
Matthews is a two-time Grammy winner who supported candidate Barack Obama during the 2008 presidential campaign.
During that campaign, Matthews played a “Change Rocks” event with musician Tim Reynolds at Indiana University and, in the 2004 presidential campaign, Matthews performed during a “Vote for Change” event for Massachusetts Democrat John Kerry.
Matthews earns an estimated $20 million a year and, according to the Web site, “Celebrity Networth,” has a total estimated net worth of $250 million.