Among military professionals it used to be said that the Americans understood war, especially after the worlds’s generals started studying the U.S. Civil War as part of their educations. That was demonstrated for all to see in the winning of World War II. No more.
That, as with reverence for life and family and American Christianity generally, has been abandoned for corrupt political goals. America has financed, fought and bled in five major wars and who knows how many unidentified ones after its WWII victory; two have been costly stalemates and the rest, even more costly unadmitted losses.
Now, seemingly on a permanent war footing that is, along with our unsustainable welfare state, consuming what remains of American wealth, we have made war into the new normal; the future that President Eisenhower foresaw and warned us against in his farewell speech.
In doing that, we channel Israel, another state in perpetual war. But Israel has not chosen its condition; it has been imposed by every one of its neighbors. Unable to destroy the hated Jews in two attempts, the surrounding Moslem states have created and sustained the ‘Palestinian’ enclaves on its borders as permanent redoubts from which missiles and every other possible attack have been continually launched, enabled by Arab, Iranian, European and American financial support. What is more notable here, is the condemnation of Israel when it tries to stem the attacks. It seems to be assumed in the West that Israel should somehow, defend itself against war without killing anybody among its attackers.
The same politically useful and militarily ridiculous attitude persists in political management of American military action these days. “Rules of Engagement” imposed upon U.S. troops in Iraq and Afghanistan for examples, kept many terrorists thugs alive and exposed Americans unnecessarily to enemy fire because the enemy used civilian shields. Americans are the good guys; we don’t shoot at civilians. It makes bad press. No one appears ready to suggest how, with so much fighting in built-up areas full of civilians, U.S. soldiers are supposed to deal with an enemy that has no such qualms. Smart bullets that recognize and avoid civilians are still pending …
Nevertheless, not only does this utterly stupid as well as ignorant attitude prevail among the population in the U.S. today but the media, whose members know better, cater to it and worse yet, so do the politicians, who want to have their wars and so frown upon any discouraging blood. The bleeding under this policy is unfortunately, more and invisibly financial and so unnoticed until it is too late.
America has moved from understanding and winning its wars to mismanaging and losing them at a financially ruinous rate, with nothing to show for the effort but turmoil and happy war manufacturers. We need to reexamine what our fathers knew about war or it will finish what our welfare spending has started, and sink us.
War is famously defined as: “A continuation of politics by other means.” In short, you go to the enemy and kill people and destroy property until he decides to see things your way. It isn’t easy, but it’s pretty simple, really. We understood that when we bombed Dresden and dropped nukes on Japan.
Of course, one can’t do that all the time; it should be undertaken only when absolutely necessary; it’s not nice. Real wars are hard to come by after much of that, people remember. The warmakers shrink, as President Eisenhower preferred. Those warmakers much prefer the perpetual war … at least as long as the misery accompanying stays overseas.
It’s an addiction really, there’s not victory, nothing to gain, just politicians and donors to satisfy and hatred piling up in all the places victimized. It is more bullying than real war, though the deaths are real enough. We need rehab; we need to cure the addiction and return to our original understanding of war, when we “spoke softly, and carried a big stick.” That way, we can have a lot fewer wars and maybe go back to winning them.