John Jay Myers: Taste the Flavor of War

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So, here we go again. Another president is starting another war in another country that is no threat to us. And our mission will be limited because our goal is not to kill Gadhafi, only to stop him from killing the people who are trying to kill him. Oh yeah, this is going to go great.

Fake wars come in 2 flavors: Republicans will sell you a war based on the idea of protecting the security and safety of Americans, despite the lack of any immediate threat or even the military capability to harm the United States. Democrats sell their wars based on humanitarian reasons, despite humanitarian conditions and lack of freedom being far worse in many other countries that we consider our allies.

First, there is no threat to American security from Gadhafi. In fact, if Gadhafi’s “evil“ were charted on a graph, it would show a trend of diminishing greatly over time. Gadhafi was a very bad guy, but in the last few years he joined our coalition against terrorism, he got rid of his nuclear program, and has done nothing since to suggest he is a threat of any sort. But, Gadhafi has been pushing for nationalization of Libya’s oil industry since 2009. Could the “slaughter” of British Petroleum’s profits be the “inhumanity” we are there to prevent?

Furthermore, his son was in the United States working with our government military contractors. If Libya is such a threat, then why wasn’t Gadhafi’s son on the no fly list? I mean we have 10 year old Boy Scouts who inadvertently make it onto the no fly list, but not “the Butcher’s” son? Either “The Butcher” isn’t considered that bad of a guy, or we have the worst homeland security force ever… (okay I didn’t realize that statement would sound so ironic). I suppose you could make a case for bombing based on Gadhafi’s ties to the perennial economic threat and sponsor of dictators, the Federal Reserve, which gave Libya $26 billion during the financial crisis.

During his speech on March 28, President Obama imagines “mass graves” and an army threatening the “city of Benghazi, home to nearly 700,000 men, women and children who sought their freedom from fear.” But is this the reality? When they show the areas that were struck by Gadhafi, there are men with guns and tanks and/or anti aircraft guns. Something tells me Gadhafi does not consider them to be “his own people”. And Jon Lee Anderson reported that actual rebels number fewer than 1000. How many other humanitarian crises affecting 1000 people have we ignored? How many casualties will a war cause? It’s almost as if the rebels are just a small group of people who have been well armed and are paid to make a lot of noise in front of the media.

So that leads us to believe these wars must be about oil and resources, and once we became locked into this nightmare we are told that there are only 1000 soldiers fighting against Gadhafi, in a country of 6,000,000 people. I would have hoped that our commanders knew that tidbit prior to launching the first missile, and it’s odd that the media correspondents embedded with the rebels didn’t mention this earlier. And who are these people that we are supporting? Do we know anything about them or what they stand for? It seems like we might want to distribute some questionnaires and get a little insight. There are only 1000 of them, so it’s not like we have to poll half the country.

And what about the civilians that actually support Gadhafi? We act as if we are up against this one man, but it appears that is not the case. The rebels are being run out of towns by other citizens carrying guns. Once Gadahfi is taken out, are there not going to be countless dead people (citizens) on the other side? What about their lives? What about the people caught in the crossfire? Is it not humanitarian to try to save them?

But why do the Republicans not just join in with the Democrats so they can continue their wars for oil in bliss? Because that is the rub. They have to take different sides to maintain the illusion that Americans have a choice between two completely different ideologies. Then if the country gets completely fed up, the people will just vote for the other guy. If voters understood both sides were the same they would have to find someone else to vote for. They don’t want you going off and voting for a third party so they pretend they are different.

This latest war shows a lot about our own leadership. Fake wars come in two flavors. This one is the humanitarian variety. Could you tell the difference? If any of the selfless reasons offered by the president had any merit, then this country never would have sponsored puppet dictators nor removed democratically elected leaders elsewhere in the world. Both Republican and Democratic presidents have started wars for the same resources, placated the public with the same false humanitarian rhetoric, and demonized the enemy in the same way to focus the people’s hate. The fake wars may have two fake varieties, but the people behind them are all the same. So much for change.

3 thoughts on “John Jay Myers: Taste the Flavor of War

  1. Margot@ChatAndPonder

    If only these wars were really “fake”… They do not look as fake to soldiers and their families.
    Something is going on in the whole Middle East. Could it be that terrorists see their opportunity to seize power in the region now?
    In my view, defending US interests should include both economics and security, as well as the world is reaching out to us for help whenever they need it.
    I prefer ‘proactive’ to ‘reactive’, i.e. hitting the potential enemies first than being attacked by them. It is hard to believe that Gadhafi has been reformed since ordering the Lockerbie bombing. Yes, his country is rich in oil, and this makes such a deranged country leader very dangerous.
    However, still, it has not been communicated clearly to US and the world what are our objectives and goals in Libya. Humanitarian help? Then there are so many countries in the world which need such help. Very confusing…And costly to US.

    The info about Gadhafi and his son provided in this article was interesting and informative.

  2. DJW

    I don’t think that bombing our enemies before they become our enemies is going to keep us safe, but it will drain our economy and inspire even more people to hate us. Violence only begets more violence, and terrorists do not spontaneously generate out of nowhere for no reason. Sticking your hand into a hornets’ nest is not a good way to avoid getting stung.

    Maybe Gadhafi has not been reformed, as you say, but is there even one iota of evidence that he was planning to initiate an attack against the US? Or against any other nation for that matter? That’s why this is a “fake” war, although perhaps “artificial” or “manufactured” would be better words. Gadhafi was responding to an internal rebellion and was/is no threat to the US. We can’t afford to fix every nation on the planet even if we assume that we have the moral justification to do so in the first place. We should have left this one, and so many others, alone.

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