These are very difficult times for me, when the nation I love is about to unilaterally bomb yet another sovereign nation, and most of my friends are acting like everything is perfectly normal. “Well, we have to do something!” Yes but does it have to be violent, and do we have to do it alone or with some pathetic trickle of a coalition? My friends return a blank stare.
If an individual acted like our nation does, he or she would be committed. If an individual appointed himself as sheriff of the neighborhood and burned down the houses of people he considered bad, none of us would like him. If he was asked what made his victims bad, and he responded without irony that they were violent and did not obey the law, it would not be evidence of his superiority but further proof of his insanity.
If you make a list of the nations we have “helped” in the last fifty years and ask how they are doing today, it would not be pretty. After fifty years of covert and overt interventions Iraq, Libya and Egypt are in chaos. Central America is still bleeding from our “help.” The nations doing well in South America are usually those who avoided falling under our wing. And yet, Americans return to the narrative of our own saintly superiority like a lunatic to an imaginary crown.
I am all in favor of international efforts to bring about regime change in Syria, but right now that nation is locked in a bloody civil war. Perhaps I am cynical but it appears our strategy is to keep the two sides balanced so the nation bleeds out and doesn’t cause problems elsewhere. That strategy will not save lives. Our president made a foolish statement about Syria crossing a “red line” if it used chemical weapons, and now if he does not act the US will lose credibility. Perhaps, but then let’s be honest that our concern is not about saving lives, but saving face.
Most of the world is saying we are wrong, which we hear as proof of their cowardice. When the whole world says you are wrong, sane people question themselves, crazy people double down on their insanity. I dearly love my nation, but at times like this, when we put on our tinfoil hat and take aim at yet another “monster,” with weapons the like of which the world has never seen, I have trouble breathing.
The Statesman this a.m. reports that Boehner supports the President in bombing Syria.If that report is true-that is another excellent reason for the President to change his mind before it is too late.
Total non-violence as a response to mass murder is a hard sell.
I am not calling for total non-violence. I am calling for due process. Before we kill we try negotiation and work with the rest of the world to put pressure on Assad. If the UN (the whole body, not just the security council) decides that violence would prevent a worse evil then that would be a very different situation.
Jim, it isn’t your nation anymore. Think about that classic scene in any Zombie flick where the uninfected has to kill the infected loved one. We are at that point. Look at your nation. See it gnash and tear at everything around it. Witness its diseased flesh with the potential taint and destroy everything and anything with which it comes into contact. Now think about the choice that has to be made. Think about what it is to admit something is lost.
Who will you vote for next election? Now consider who you voted for last election. Would anything be different if you had made a different choice?
Why not? How can both of those monsters have the same agenda? They both want this nasty thing you despise. War. They want it because without the distraction their flaws become to much for us to take. No more Snowden. No more Manning. No more NSA. No more Fast and Furious. No more too big to fail. No more corruption, lies, revolving doors. No more questions. Just is this good or bad and should we or shouldn’t we. They have us scared. Scared of Russia. Scared of Syria. Scared of nukes and scared of gas. Scared of ourselves. We are scared because evil does exist and we see it. We see it, but we don’t want to admit it is there. So we begin to lie. We say, “Loved one. Is that you? Loved one. I am afraid.” We don’t want to admit the infection has spread.
A litmus test: Can you love a Syrian as yourself? The nation you think you love has turned into something that cannot. Cannot love, cannot remember the principles it has been built upon, cannot obey God’s law. Cannot even obey it’s own laws. It is a monster now. It is lost. And it will take you with it, unless you realize it is gone. You must admit it no longer exists, you must admit it is lost because only then will you have the courage to do the thing you must do.
It is definitely a bad situation. I need to read up more on Mark Twain and the anti-imperialist league.
Jim, et al,
Where does one draw the line between emergency intervention in a bullying situation as Kari and Jason consider this (only far more dire stakes) and vigilanteism as Jim paints it? 9/5/13, 08:11 CDT