War is Too Easy for Most Americans
What better way to wrap up this wild and crazy decade than to dredge up this explosive polarizing subject that basically defines the Aughts (or the Oh Ohs, Uh Ohs, whatever you want to call them).
This column by Bob Herbert brings up the issue that’s surely caused more online shouting matches than any other subject. He reiterates what’s been said jillions of times already: Our Iraqistan Quagmire™ is having absolutely no effect on the vast vast majority of Americans. Because of this, it’s much too easy for millions of sheltered Americans to sit all snuggled up in their living rooms and blither endlessly about “We need to get in there and fight!” “Failure is not an option!” Etc.
Bob Herbert’s column is low key and politely worded, so I won’t go into one of my rants about trustfunded safety-netted chickenhawk fucks who’d probably shit their pants if somebody even glared at them, but these same dickwads are perfectly happy to — oops, I did it again.
His column starts with:
“I spoke recently with a student at Columbia who was enthusiastic about the escalation of U.S. forces in Afghanistan. He argued that a full-blown counterinsurgency effort, which would likely take many years and cost many lives, was the only way to truly win the war. He was a very bright young man: thoughtful and eager and polite. I asked him if he had any plans to join the military and help make this grand mission a success. He said no.”
Multiply the above-mentioned F#$%!#%$&! by a few million — or tens of millions — and you have our predicament. America is willing to fight those commie terrorist Muslims to the last drop of somebody else’s blood.
For the future, the obvious answer is no more elective “pre-emptive” invasions. But meanwhile, tens of millions of Americans think it’s just hunky dory to have 1% of the population doing all the fighting, dying, and coming home disabled.
Military personnel and their families are suffering more and more while the rest of the country goes its merry way. Herbert also says:
“The reason it is so easy for the U.S. to declare wars, and to continue fighting year after year after year, is because so few Americans feel the actual pain of those wars. We’ve been fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan longer than we fought in World Wars I and II combined. If voters had to choose right now between instituting a draft or exiting Afghanistan and Iraq, the troops would be out of those two countries in a heartbeat.”
So — bring back the draft? Or maybe establish some sort of mandatory service that wouldn’t have to involve combat. At the very least, we need a huge gargantuan agonizing excruciating surtax to pay for any future invasions. And this tax would be established and collected BEFORE the first soldier leaves American soil. That’s sort of the opposite approach from a certain unnamed dimwitted president who gave trillions of dollars in tax cuts to the wealthiest Americans while simultaneously spending trillions of dollars to topple a certain dictator, like his daddy didn’t, so his mommy would smile and glow and beckon him back into her bed. But I digress…
Herbert’s column ends with:
“What we are doing is indefensible and will ultimately exact a fearful price, and there will be absolutely no way for the U.S. to avoid paying it.”
Labels: Bob Herbert