War, part 2

“Why of course the people don’t want war. Why should some poor slob on a farm want to risk his life in a war when the best he can get out of it is to come back to his farm in one piece? Naturally the common people don’t want war neither in Russia, nor in England, nor for that matter in Germany. That is understood. But, after all, it is the leaders of the country who determine the policy and it is always a simple matter to drag the people along, whether it is a democracy, or a fascist dictatorship, or a parliament, or a communist dictatorship. Voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked, and denounce the peacemakers for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same in any country.” – Hermann Goering

So where were we?  Ahhh yes, war.  In the previous post we discussed war in general.  I thought that was important because I don’t want to be accused of being a flaming liberal.  (Even though it’s frequently true.)  So, now onto our present wars and what we should, and shouldn’t, do about them.

I voted for Mr. Obama.  I still hope he succeeds as president, although I’m beginning to have real doubts.  (Actually, as you may know, I think things are so fucked up that no single person could fix it.)  Anyway, I like the guy.  But he is totally fucking wrong in expanding the war in Afghanistan.  And here’s why…

1-  We can’t afford to keep doing shit like this.  We’re broke.  We need to make tough, maybe even selfish, decisions.  So far we’ve spent about 1.25  trillion dollars in Afghanistan and Iraq and we will get NOTHING in return.  Wouldn’t that pay for healthcare?  Or infrastructure?  or education?  I’m sorry, but Afghanistan doesn’t make my top 10,000 list of priorities.

2-  If it isn’t fixed in the first 8 years of occupation, it isn’t likely to be fixed with one more.  Kind of simple really.

3-  The Taliban and Al qeada are bad but they probably aren’t much of a threat right now.  Our debt is a threat right now.  Americans dying for no real reason is a threat right now.  If you’re worried about Al qeada then make Homeland Security do it’s fucking job.  Killing some guy in a cave won’t help.

4-  This country has been a mess forever.  It’s the place where empires go to die.  Figure it out.  Afghanistan is good for one thing, growing poppies.  If you really want to help them, make hash legal and let them grow it for the world market.

5-  I know Pakistan is a fucking mess.  This won’t help.  If their nuclear arsenal is the real problem, be a man and blow it the fuck up.  From a distance.  It’s the American way.

6-  It’s a crying shame that the American kids who died in Iraq and Afghanistan may have died for no real purpose.  Bush, Cheney, and Rumsfeld should be publicly tortured to death for ordering it.  But sending more kids to die in order to justify the earlier sacrifice is just as obscene.  Don’t do it.

7-  You’re making this decision out of fear.  If you pull out and we get attacked you’ll be blamed.  Decisions made out of fear are always wrong.  I thought you were better than this.

8-  As you’ve said, the world can be a very dangerous place.  Well, if you do this you’ll leave us with very few soldiers in reserve.  What if we actually need our army while you have it fucking around in useless country?

9-  American soldiers are amazing and valuable.  They need to be respected and protected.  By bringing them home.

10-  Don’t tell me we’re going to get Al qeada.  If that’s the real plan why aren’t we invading about 20 countries that have more members than Afghanistan or Pakistan?  In fact, shouldn’t we invade Saudi Arabia first since that’s where they started?

11-  Didn’t you just win the Nobel Peace Prize?  Don’t you understand that you’re morally wrong here?  You should.

I could go on but you get the idea.  So here’s the new plan.  Immediate withdrawal from both Afghanistan and Iraq.  Bring everyone home as quickly as it’s safely feasible to do so.  No more casualties.  And bring all our stuff home too.  If those countries devolve into chaos they can find their own way to civilization, or not.  I know this sounds kind of hard hearted, but it really ISN’T OUR BUSINESS.  Half the countries in the world are screwed up.  All we can do is lead by example and help when it seems like we can affect real change.  And this ain’t the time or place.  Vaya con Dios and Viva la Revolucion.  Amen