"Blessed are the Peacemakers..."  

BransonLuvFest 50M/49F
84 posts
3/3/2006 9:20 am

Last Read:
3/6/2006 6:36 am

"Blessed are the Peacemakers..."

The bold portions of this post are excerpted from a post I made recently on another website where mostly retired military veterans, Foreign Service Officers, and Intel Community types discuss current events.

It's interesting to me that a bunch of Vietnam-era guys who...on another day and another thread...might easily be heard complaining about how politicians tied the hands of the US military in Vietnam and wouldn't let them win the war are now defending the exact same practice in Iraq.

This is what my brother meant (who is a Vietnam vet who has fought every major conflict since including this one now) when he said "we haven't learned from history."

In case you are unfamiliar with the General Pershing reference, he was talking about what Pershing did in the Philippines when Muslim terrorists began attacking. Pershing took action that today would get him relieved, possible jailed, and there was not a single act of Muslim terrorism in the WORLD for something like 40 years after he did it!

The way I see it, our problem is pretty simple. But it is also probably impossible to solve. Based on objective observation of our ACTIONS and RESULTS, not our rhetoric, we still love to fight wars. We just can't stand to win them. We have become a nation that thrives on conflict and violence instead of peace. We no longer fight to restore peace. We fight to make money by perpetuating low-intensity conflict. And the rest of the world is figuring this out. And THAT is why anti-Americanism is running rampant everywhere in the world except for the heartland of America.

Sitting in a duckblind shortly after 9/11, the Col and I had just about that precise discussion. After 30+ years of faithful service, it is a very sore subject for him. He's gravely disappointed. He truly believed we had changed. Desert Storm gave us all hope. Prez Bush gave us all more hope. Afghanistan gave us even more hope. But this time around in Iraq, the old ways have re-emerged.
We're more concerned with having our troops pass out candy and repair potholes in the streets of Baghdad than we are with hunting down and exterminating the insurgents. We sent them into battle to kick some raghead ass, but instead are ordering them to kiss it.

This chronic misuse of the US military by politicians in Washington DC is destroying the United States. Soldiers are trained, professional killers. When folks see them coming, they should tremble with fear. When folks see them leave, they should be very glad. "Passing out candy" is not the problem. But if we must pass out candy, it should be done by someone else. When your guard dog licks the face of the first burglar who jumps the fence, he becomes worthless as a deterent. This should not be so hard to understand. But we now live in the world of The Mouse That Roared and "Wag the Dog." And worst of all, folks are realizing that we are not peacemakers. We have become a destabilizing force in the world because of our moral inability to take decisive action and mete out crushing defeat to our enemies. We no longer destroy enemies and make friends. We no longer end wars. We start and prolong them. And THAT is the real heart of the problem.

BransonLuvFest 50M/49F

3/3/2006 11:14 am

Post Script - This is also the exact same reason why Americans can't figure out where all the animosity toward us is coming from. We see ourselves as "the nice guy," while everyone decries us as evil, bloodthirsty, and greedy. The truth is BOTH! And that is the hardest kind of truth to recognize. We always tend to think in terms of polarity - either-or. And we expect to find truth "somewhere in the middle." So that's where we look. But the truth is the whole enchilada: we are TOO NICE, and while intending the opposite, we prolong human suffering. Instinctively, ALL people know that those who prolong human suffering are evil and bloodthirsty. The rest of the world judges us by our RESULTS, because they cannot know our intentions. But we see our intentions, and are largely blind to the fruit of our labor.

oldman1776 78M
3164 posts
3/4/2006 11:54 am

You are so damn right. I thought you fight a war to win as fast and with the least posible loss of life to your side. Any more it is not a war it is hand holding by the polititons. They all want us there but no one wants to win.

Iraq will turn in to another Nam a lost cause.

Like Nam the eople of Iraq have been fighting within there own country and the countrys around them for centuries.

As soon as we leave they will be Fighting again.

BransonLuvFest 50M/49F

3/6/2006 6:36 am

Speaking of winning and losing, according to the Pentagon, 2 years ago there were an estimated 5,000 insurgents in Iraq. The current estimate ranges from 20,000-30,000. And we claim to have killed as many as 50,000. That means the insurgency has GROWN during our "successful" counter-insurgency campaign by 400-600% and that the insurgents successfully recruited an increase of 1600%!

Somehow, I have trouble defining that as "success."

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