Korea, Vietnam, Lebanon, Grenada, Panama, Iraq, Kuwait, Somalia, Bosnia, Kosovo, Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya
Like it or Not, USA is World's Cop
But Not Always a Humanitarian
by Dan Ehrlich

American presidents, be they Democrat or Republican, seem to believe in “Happy Days” so much, they fail to realize it hasn’t been on TV for decades. As with that long, long running show that gradually faded sadly away at its end, our political leaders can’t  see when its time quit a winner and try something new.

So, to get us behind the latest war effort, this time in Libya, President Obama pulled out the evergreen "humanitarian" rescue card, failing to realize American’s are intelligent enough to know this has become standard dried out bullshit.

He said in his televised speech even though we can’t be the world’s policeman, we couldn’t stand by and watch a massacre take place. But that fact is, as the actions in the above listed countries prove,  like it or not, we are the world’s policeman.

We have stood by as massacres were taking place, i.e., Rwanda, Bosnia, Darfur, Sierra Leone and the Congo. The developed world had little or no economic interest and  political capital in these tragedies.

As for positive humanitarian policing, after four years of bloodshed in and around Bosnia, it took liberal President Bill Clinton to unilaterally enact a no fly zone and combat missions that finally ended this war.
NATO and America are almost Synonyms
Libya is another story. It's a major oil producer and its leader Muammar Gaddafi has long been an irritation for the western world. Initially it was a matter of who we support, if anyone at all.  But now we have turned the Libyan operation over to NATO after carrying out most of the aerial combat missions. Yet, we are by far the biggest contributor to NATO and usually serve as its de-facto leader. So, figure on having US pilots in action for some time.

As I said in a past blog, we probably wouldn’t mind being the world’s cop if it didn’t cost the US taxpayers so much in American lives and American money. So, why not be paid by countries as diverse as China and Saudi Arabia to keep them and their commerce secure on the high seas, for example.

This isn’t as far fetched as it may seem. After all, China is already our prime mortgage holder. But more than this, constant conflict  would keep us occupied and distracted from the nation's pressing domestic problems.

Possibly the biggest question Americans have to ponder, aside from what are we going to do when the oil runs out, is: Has the Orwellian nightmare in “1984”, the war that never ends, become a reality for us? We seem to always be in some sort of combat role, sometimes being the only country willing to take on obvious humanitarian missions. Bosnia and Somalia were cases in point.

But, according to a US Senate report, there was a time when our forces could have smashed the Al Qaeda leadership and captured Osama Bin Laden. But, we let him escape by order of GW Bush and Donald Rumsfeld.

The reason was simple: Bin Laden was more valuable to the war effort and less trouble by being on the loose. This devious logic is even stretching it for such an underhanded regime in the White House. We had to have an identifiable enemy to keep chasing. The war effort would them switch to Iraq and Dick Cheney’s patriotic pals at Halliburton would become that much richer before moving their headquarters to Dubai.
WW2 was the Only Conflict of National Survival
A look at major American military campaigns during the past 100 years, only WW2 was a conflict of national security and well being. The Spanish-American War was purely political and economic, WW1 was largely due to Germany killing Americans on the high seas by unrestricted submarine warfare and Korea was a political operation to save Asia from Communism. Regrettably so was Vietnam.

The Cold War: We now know that the Soviet threat was grossly overstated as a popular boogeyman to keep Americans occupied and happy to be “free.” Iraq 1 and 2 was for oil and more oil...there was a rumor about weapons of mass destruction…but Halliburton couldn't find any.

Now we're spending US lives and billions in Afghanistan on another questionable conflict in a non country of hill tribes of various loyalties and beliefs in a quest to stamp out terrorism, maintain the US backed government in power and secure women's rights.

Alternatively, we could be securing our own borders and developing better defenses for new threats just over the horizon. We have yet to learn we can't change other nations to be a good fit for us. Vietnam should have taught us that.

Our real reason for being in Vietnam, for example, was to preserve American hegemony in Southeast Asia. But, we were fed the view we were fighting to keep South Vietnam free. We lost nearly 60,000 American troops and killed more than 2 million Vietnamese in the end for nothing.

Economically, we lost the region first to the Japanese and later the so-called Tiger Nations, all of whom are our trading pals. In fact we're now even holding joint naval exercises with Vietnam, which has become major trading partner with us.
Married to the Biggest Communist Nation of All
And the biggest communist nation of all nations, China, has America by the economic short hairs as we squirm in  the same bed. So, we’ve become friends with them, too. But, while China no longer poses a threat to us of godless communism, we have to be on guard because those menacing Cubans are waiting to pounce only a few miles from our shores armed with the Communist Manifesto.

Wait! We now can see on the horizon where a newly developed Chinese anti ship missile reportedly could sink the entire US fleet. Sounds like another version of the Cold War in the green room.

More and more it seems America needs an enemy to fight just as liberals need an underdog to champion. We need to have an adversary to keep our population occupied and tough. Or to paraphrase Orwell, to keep the fabric of society intact.

Without conflict we would swap fear and patriotism for glaring dislike for the way our democracy is dissolving. Our domestic issues would again rate top priority. People might even be forced away from banal and idiotic reality TV to reality politics.
The Perfect War: It Never Ends
So, enter the perfect war, the War on Terrorism. What makes this so perfect is that it’s straight out of the book…a war that will always be underway because there will always be terrorists somewhere and governments devious enough to keep people on tender hooks fearing the next attack.

I mean even GW could understand this. He made good use of the idea, creating a Homeland Security Agency with impressive and costly HS fortresses dotting the nation.

The trick for the population is to accept the fact there may always be terrorists, yet not let it disrupt society. Because when that happens, the bombers or shooters feel they have won and politicians will have a green light to curtail individual liberty on the basis of national security.

But, what about all those HS fortresses? Why are there so many of them and what will they be used for…to imprison and question terrorists? Or will they wind up housing people deemed dangerous…the dissenters and troublemakers the government may not like?

Still, shooting wars, such as what's happening in Libya, if you can call that a war, serve as vital distractions while making sure the oil keeps flowing. Aside from the death and destruction, the other casualty in all this carnage and money wasted is democracy.

Because when all parties largely act in accord with one another, the people’s will is often ignored or information given the electorate may be false in order to create the necessary popular backing for a certain action…and the war continues…on humanitarian grounds, that is.

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