A day after Barack Hussein Obama met with Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu, he gave a press conference and responded to a question of what would happen if sanctions on Iran fail (more than they have already) by denouncing "those who are suggesting, or proposing, or beating the drums of war".
When asked whether his "window of diplomatic opportunity" and serious face remarks about the "costs of war" applied to Syria as well as Iran, the peacemonger suddenly became the warmonger, asserting that, "What’s happening in Syria is heartbreaking and outrageous, and what you’ve seen is the international community mobilize against the Assad regime. And it’s not a question of when Assad leaves -- or if Assad leaves -- it’s a question of when."
In Iran, Ahmadinejad and Khamenei get an endless window to repress their own people and build their nukes, while in Syria, Assad is told that it's only a question of when he leaves. That's not the kind of talk you use unless you mean to make him leave, one way or another, using the fig leaf of the international community, which can't get a war vote through the UN, but can organize yet another Coalition of the Willing.
To the untrained ear this may sound a lot like the beating of war drums, but sophisticated types know that it's actually the cowbell of peace jangling with the groovy beat of humanitarian vibes. Sure it may all end in bombs falling on Damascus, but they'll be peace bombs painted rainbow colors by marines who have married each other in a special commitment ceremony.
Republicans make war, while Democrats make explosive peace, just like they did in Kosovo where there are still more American troops than there are in Iraq, a legacy of the Clinton Administration's humanitarian bombmaking peace.
Now after years of sneering at Republicans, the Democrats have their own Axis of Evil list, they just refuse to admit that they have it. Bombing countries on the list is a friendly act, which is why the current name for the Coalition of the Willing in Syria, is "Friends of Syria", a name that would have given Orwell a fit. Bombing countries that aren't on the list is irresponsible warmongering.
It's a matter of transparent hypocrisy that the same voices who keep denouncing warmongering in Iran, want us to go into Syria. The difference between warmongering and a righteous humanitarian effort is a matter of political orientation, much like the difference between Iraq and Libya where we bombed a country to rid it of its dictator only to leave behind chaos and feuding factions. Or between Kony2012 and drone strikes in Somalia.
Democrats don't like the military, but they like their wars. Until the Gulf War, every significant war in the previous century had been begun by Democratic presidents. They just didn't like calling them wars. Korea was a "police action" and in Vietnam we were just there as advisers. No wars to see here. Libya officially wasn't a war, it was just one of things where we bombed a country for several months until we tracked down and crippled the convoy of its leader. If we go into Syria, it certainly won't be as a war, we'll be keeping the peace through a war, bombing the village to save the village.
In the 20th century, there has hardly been a single Democratic president who didn't bring America into a war. Woodrow Wilson had WW1, Franklin Roosevelt had WW2, Truman had Korea, JFK and LBJ had Vietnam, Bill Clinton had Yugoslavia and Obama has Libya. Only Carter was the odd man out, though he did begin supplying the Afghan Mujahideen with weapons which helped bring us into the current conflict.
With a record like that you would think that the Democrats would at least leave the peace signs and flowers at home. Some of their wars were necessary and some weren't, but between them they are responsible for the lion's share of wars that we have been in.
These days the Dems love intervening in what they call "humanitarian crises", which is usually code for intervening on one side of a civil war where both sides are dubious. They don't tend to intervene in genuinely one-sided conflicts. Sudan and Rwanda never saw bombers overhead. Actual genocide doesn't interest them except when bemoaning the general fallen state of man without international law. Fake genocide, whether it's in Yugoslavia or Libya draws them like flies to a D.C. banquet in summer.
What these peaceful wars are really about is glorying in the majesty of international law and sending soldiers off to die so that people in other countries will live the way you want them to. The Arab Spring isn't about overthrowing dictators, it's about putting the right kind of dictators in power.
No wonder then that the "international community" in all its majesty sneers at the kind of limited existential conflict that Israel would like to fight. There's no mention of a democratic Iran and the stuff about international law is just unserious. Stopping madmen from getting their hands on nuclear weapons is fine for the plot of a Tom Cruise movie, but serious diplomats can't be expected to take it seriously as a basis for intervention. Why if they intervened every time some lunatic got his hands on nuclear weapons, they would have to go into North Korea and Pakistan. And why do that when it's much more fun to lay out the plans of what kind of government Syria should have after its liberation from Shiite totalitarian rule to Sunni totalitarian rule, as if the latter won't handle that themselves.
Warmongering is what selfish states do when they stand to benefit in some way from a conflict. But the United States no longer fights wars with any hope of benefiting from them. Increasingly it fights wars for some abstract principle. Even when there's a perfectly good reason to go into a country, such as its rulers harboring terrorists who murdered thousands of Americans, our leaders won't stop until they've eliminated any such selfish elements through a program of nation building.
In times past we sacrificed soldiers to win wars, in our days we sacrifice them to lose wars. The more soldiers die unnecessarily to protect and take care of the vital infrastructure of the local democratic junta when they could have been saved with an air strike or two, the more we show how unselfish we are, how humanitarian and altruistic our foreign policy is.
Some countries pride themselves on having a foreign policy that serves their interests. We pride ourselves on having a foreign policy that doesn't serve our interests at all. The more our foreign policy doesn't serve our interests, the nobler we know that we are. Take the Arab Spring. We would have been well served to protect ourselves by keeping allied governments in place. Instead we sacrificed those governments and turned the place over to the Muslim Brotherhood, thereby showing how unselfish we truly are.
The rest of the world naturally thinks that we are always throwing our weight around, no matter what we do. But the peacemongers live in the blissful knowledge that nothing they do serves our own interests. And being certain of having a truly selfless foreign policy, they feel entitled to bomb anyone they want since no one can accuse them of bombing out of self-interest.
The altruistic warmonger becomes a peacemonger through his altruism achieving the satori of selflessness.. By submitting to the tin god of international law as a Muslim submits to Allah, he gains freedom from conscience and the perceived right to do anything he pleases for the humanitarian cause. Warmongering becomes peacemongering. Invasions become interventions. Bombings become acts of friendship. And as in 1984, war becomes peace.
Republicans make war, while Democrats make explosive peace...
In times past we sacrificed soldiers to win wars, in our days we sacrifice them to lose wars...
Some countries pride themselves on having a foreign policy that serves their interests. We pride ourselves on having a foreign policy that doesn't serve our interests at all..."
Gotta love the Groucho-like irony - "Those are my principles. If you don't like them, I have others..." :)
The one theme that overlies all these examples of Daniel's, is the arrogance of the leftist elite that worship their own moral perfection.
Gee, I sure wish those Viet Cong who planted that landmine which took the life of my father and another American adviser had known that it wasn't war.ReplyDelete
Great piece, Daniel.
"the cowbell of peace"ReplyDelete
Oh God, that's too funny, I can't stop laughing, it hurts....
I tried to Google it --- but all I got back from Google was...
" No results containing all your search terms were found. "
I tried to copy ALL the "Knishisms" in the article ---- but I had to copy half the article.
Great writing !
Hey ! I know where I've seen Obama and his clique before --- in high school.
He was the leader of the haughty pack of kids, the in-crowd, who were too good to associate with anyone in the out-crowd, and they let you know it by their "sneering countenance" and "dripping with contempt" attitude.
No sincere attempt to communicate and associate for them, just defensive sneering and contempt.
But Obama still has his cult-like followers, and they worship him for the same juvenile reasons that the clique followed its leader in high school.
When I try to figure out Obama, the word "psychopath" keeps coming to mind.
When you said of the U.S. that
" Increasingly it fights wars for some abstract principle. "
you could add that Obama gets us into "responsibility to protect" or "peace keeping" type wars as a deliberate means of GRINDING DOWN our military and "dulling the blade of war" so that the U.S. will no longer be able to really defend itself and so will be diminished in the world.
"The U.S. diminished in the world" is what Obama wants, because he regards the U.S. as the leader of a white, Christian western civilization, a civilization that he feels rejected him, a civilization that he can never really be a part of, and so, out of a sense of rejection and spite, he wants the U.S. diminished, if not worse.
Great analysis - thank you!ReplyDelete
I also agree with the comments and, want to add mine:
I've read Barry Rubins explanation regarding Syria and Iran and, Obama dubious games.
It needs to be noted that Obama has caused the uproar and, killing of civilians because he used his buddies - the Muslim Brotherhood among others to form an opposition to overthrow Assad.
We've seen this before during the Arab Spring, and Libyia.
Unfortunatedly for him, his selected team of opposition starting with the MB, Salahis and, Turkey (Obamas bossumbuddy)has collapsed; with exception of the MB, the others have thrown in the towel. Rubin says "that's a good thing'.
Who gave obama the authorization to sabotage Assad, Syria and it's people causing thousands to die?
Was the financing authorized by congress?
If I wouldn't know any better, I'd say he is hellbend on establishing a worldwide 'caliphate'.
Taking your anaylis, adding Rubins reporting and, the EO dtd 16 March 2012, what is the endgame for Obama?
So far, he protected Iran - is he trying to distract the american public and, voters by starting WWIII?
Maybe some of you can give me an answer; obama wallows in 'don't let a crisis go to waste' although we know he creates crisis to what end?
Does he hate this country to such an extend to bring about a nuke going off somewhere in the US, or is he trying to declare 'martial law' in peace time to declare himself 'caesar' and, or is there an upcoming coup?
It's getting scary and, where is congress?
Why don't loyal American soldiers refuse to fight in any war not declared by Congress, as the Constitution requires? This would be a perfect way of bringing the issues out in the open.ReplyDelete
We're all Winston Smiths:(ReplyDelete
Simple answer? They'd get locked up in a heartbeat.
OT but your question brought me back to high school typing class and the sentence that is supposed to use all letters of the alphabet:
"Now is the time for all good men to come to the aid of their country."
Obviously it doesn't contain all of the letters. Why was it important to learn that particular sentence in connection with learning to type?
Dunno. Maybe the person who came up with that thought coming to the aid of our country was important and "speaking out" through print would be important one day.
republican vs. democrats!!!ReplyDelete
Keli Ata, what a blast from the past!ReplyDelete
I remember typing that too. Is it still taught?
I doubt they still teach it in high schools anymore:( Kids are too hooked on text message shorthand typing.ReplyDelete
Typing is still taught in vocational colleges that prepare people for entry level office jobs.
My kids call it 'keyboarding', but they do still teach the QWERTY. (7th-8th grade according to my daughter.)ReplyDelete
But I wonder what the equivalent is these days? (my daughter seems to recall a quick brown fox jumping..., not exactly as inspiring, no?)
"The quick brown fox jumped over the lazy dog" is used most often as it does contain all letters of the alphabet.ReplyDelete
"I hold it as a principle that the duration of peace is in direct proportion to the slaughter you inflict upon the enemy. The harder you hit them, the longer they remain quiet".ReplyDelete
Sept 1843-July 1882