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Monday, June 20, 2011

DON’ WANNA STUDY WAR NO MORE

Rep. Ron Paul won a straw poll vote over the weekend, and opined that “young people are tired of war”. He said his candidacy is a response to "endless, undeclared, unwinnable wars dumped on the young people" and a soaring national debt. He also said the U.S. "shouldn't be warmongers. We shouldn't be the policemen of the world." I hate to agree with him, but he’s right, at least in this instance. We were not divinely appointed to bring peace, justice and the American Way to the world. We’re supposed to show folks and lead by example, not force them into a mold that we think they should want, and that’s just what a war does: forces a different world-view on the people that are conquered, mostly to the detriment of their own society.

I’m in my early 60s, and *I* am tired of war. Before all of y’all start squalling that I don’t know what I’m talking about, I do. I spent time – a LOT of time – in the military during the Vietnam “war”.

I’m also tired of the United States being used as the world’s janissaries. The definition of janissary (from Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Janissary) is “captive young boys, usually Christians (and usually tribute children from the provinces of the Empire), who were indoctrinated into Islam through madrassas”. They were the first standing army of the Ottoman Empire. They were also as scary a group as any that could be found, for literally hundreds of years. As with all groups of this sort, they turned into the government and, by 1826, were running things. Their end was both bloody and predictable.

From Wikipedia, same article (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Janissary#Revolts_and_disbandment):

“By 1826, the sultan was ready to move. Historian Patrick Kinross suggests that Mahmud II incited them to revolt on purpose, describing it as the sultan's "coup against the Janissaries". The sultan informed them, through a fatwa, that he was forming a new army, organized and trained along modern European lines. As predicted, they mutinied, advancing on the sultan's palace. In the ensuing fight, the Janissary barracks were set in flames by artillery fire resulting in 4,000 Janissary fatalities.] The survivors were either exiled or executed, and their possessions were confiscated by the Sultan. This event is now called the Auspicious Incident. The last of the Janissaries were then put to death by decapitation in what was later called the blood tower, in Thessaloniki.”

The United States has become, by default, the world’s janissaries, and if we’re not real careful, our military is going to suffer the same fate as the Ottoman Empire’s janissaries. We’re already seeing that happen in Afghanistan and Iraq. There are more deaths of OUR SOLDIERS every week, and for no good reason other than the countries that we’re in are sick of our being there. It’s time and long past time that we brought our troops home.

Then, there’s the cost. We are spending an inordinate amount of money in both of these countries, and I’d like to see us leave. Iraq owes us money (regardless of the 6 billion in cash that’s so “mysteriously missing” and for which they are going to sue the US to get); I’d like to see us recover at least some of the money that we’ve already spent there, or at least get the oil that pResident Bu$hit and his cronies sent us to invade the country for. I’d also like to see us out of Afghanistan. Nothing much has changed in that country; the Taliban is going to be back in there before much longer, and it’s going to be running the country, and all the uppity wimmenfolk are going to be back in burkas, dead or in exile. The cost of the Afghan war is over 430 BILLION dollars so far. Just think what we, this country, could have done with that money. New schools, new libraries, new roads and bridges, new electrical transmission lines and towers – and that’s just for starters. Factor in the Iraq war at nearly 800 BILLION, and there’s the money for Social Security and Medicare – forever and ever.

Ron Paul is right. He just didn’t take it far enough.

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