Friday, September 13, 2013

I Just Have To Say It

It's time to stop playing nice with those people who constantly carp about "isolationists" and attempt to silence anyone who urges the slightest thoughtful reflection upon the monumental decision to unleash the most powerful military force the world has ever known. Let's call them what they are: warmongers.

I used to be the sort of person who bristled at the slightest criticism of America. I used to think that every peace protestor was a communist. And then, the evidence mounted. The unintended consequences of each successive intervention seemed to snowball. The president acquired unparalleled power. The parties and their devotees took turns condemning and supporting different wars, and political advantage seemed the only criterion. Other than 9/11, when was the last time the United States was actually attacked? It's called the Department of Defense. Does it really defend anything? Does it defend us? Or is that what we tell ourselves because the truth about the deployment of our armed forces is too hard to face?

I know many people in the armed forces. They really are the best we have. That much is true. You have to have a special kind of courage to be willing to do all that they do. There's a special fraternal bond forged in the fire of risking your life for someone else that can barely be described. I won't try. But you know what else I won't do? I won't use that bond as a covering for bad choices. I won't mutter on about how they "protect our freedoms" because I lack the ability to say how. When you put that flag in some mother's hand, you had better be able to say, "We wouldn't be here without them," and it had better be true. When was the last time it was true? A vague idea of our own moral superiority isn't going to cut it any more. I'm sorry. If that makes me unpatriotic, then I question your definition. I don't believe in peace at any price. But we're selling peace for 30 shekels of silver, and it needs to stop.

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