Home National Politics Whatever the Problem, Very Serious People’s Solution is Always More All-Out War

Whatever the Problem, Very Serious People’s Solution is Always More All-Out War


The Washington Post editorial board, which Republicans would have you believe is part of our “liberal” media, today demands President Obama lead us into nothing short of all-out, indefinite war in Iraq, Syria, and wherever else war takes us:

Already, the group has seized far more of Iraq and Syria than is compatible with the safety and human rights of the people living there, and its sights are set on further destabilization in Jordan, Saudi Arabia and Kurdistan, as well as terror attacks in Europe and, if it’s capable of them, the United States. The two Americans butchered by the Islamic State will not be the last if the group’s leaders have their way. This murderous terrorist army, whose scarily effective global recruitment matches its global ambitions, can be neither contained nor “managed,” as the president implied in some of his more hesitant previous comments. […]

In seeking their support for what may be the first long-term overseas war to begin entirely on his watch, the president should be utterly forthright about the risks of inaction but also about the potential costs of action. Only a clear-eyed president, backed by an informed people and their representatives, can lead the world in this crucial mission.

It doesn’t matter than John McCain was palling around with ISIS just last year. It doesn’t matter that the last war the Washington Post pushed caused the destabilization that ushered in ISIS. And no mention of the 100,000+ Iraqi civilians killed in that war – gee, do you think that might have something to do with why ISIS is having no trouble recruiting a new generation of terrorists? Never mind, bomb more! If only you damn peaceniks had let us bomb more and get more kids killed for no good reason last time, we wouldn’t have to bomb and kill kids again now!

Since World War II, we’ve gone to war in Korea, Vietnam, Iraq (twice) and Afghanistan, and only in Afghanistan could I give you a very good reason why. Otherwise, this seems like yet another case of the Very Serious People inside the Beltway warning us that we face an Imminent Threat that only Clear-Eyed People can see, and if you can’t see it, clearly you are not Clear-Eyed and cannot be trusted to discuss national security.

As Dave Weigel writes at Slate, ISIS’ beheading videos were “surely meant to sow fear and breed over-reaction, [and] succeeded magnificently.” There are always Very Serious People ready to play war games with someone else’s kids, and war profiteers ready to cash in.

  • The vast majority of the American people (correctly) see ISIL as a threat and are supportive of air strikes (not ground forces) against it.  I take it you’re opposed to that? If so, what would you do (if anything) to counter ISIL?

  • ir003436

    Back in the 1960’s, when I was a young Army officer, the best and the brightest told me I had to go to Vietnam and kill Commies, otherwise, they’d be in Thailand then Malaysia then the Philippines then downtown Honolulu.  

    So, I went to Vietnam and killed a few commies.  Then, one day, after about 60,000 GI’s had died, we realized the best and brightest didn’t know what they were talking about.  Now we buy our Nikes from the Commies.  Would have been much smarter to have built a few Nike factories back in the ’60’s.

    Now, as on old retired Army officer, I hear the best and the brightest urging us to save Syria or Iraq or Iran from the Commies — ooops — meant to say “ISIS.”.

    Was it Al Qaeda who crashed the housing market?  Is it the Taliban who is passing laws to restrict the rights of people to vote?  After 9-11, did we repeal our Constitution?  Cancel elections?  Close churches, schools, charitable organizations?  Is ISIS responsible for our eroding national infrastructure?

    There’s a legend (it’s not true) that when Cassius Clay, AKA Mohammed Ali, was asked why he refused to be drafted for military service, he replied:  “No VietCong ever called me ‘nigger’.”  While the story is not true, it illustrates perfectly the answer to those who want to saddle up and go after the terrorist d’jour.

    We need to take care of business at home.  Let centuries-old antagonists work out their own problems, no matter how bloody it may be.

    And please don’t tell me about “mushroom clouds over New York” or “WMD.”

  • ir003436

    I think you meant to say “The Best and The Brightest.”


    We’ve been down this road before — time and again — and we know where it leads.

  • Kaine says “a strong American response, to include military action, is certainly warranted… I believe the American public and this Congress will support such a mission.”