Well there he goes again. The omniscient U.S. Senator from South Carolina, Lindsey Graham, has warned us silly American people that another 911 is coming if we don’t insert soldiers on the ground in Syria. This is the same Senator that warned his constituents that a nuclear attack on Charleston Harbor was likely if we didn’t confront Iran by attacking its ally Syria back in 2013. He also wrongly predicted in the same breath that war between Israel and Iran would break out in 6 months if we didn’t act. Either he knows something we don’t, or more likely he doesn’t know what is apparent to everyone else: this is part of the permanent fear mongering apparatus that is designed to keep all of us cowering under our beds.
Here is a reality check. Our country is full of soft targets. Just as in Paris, a committed terrorist can wreak havoc on a localized level if they get in the country. We can’t do anything about it unless we are ready to give into a complete police state. What’s amazing is that we haven’t had any significant attacks of the magnitude of Paris. Most of the safety measures we see are reactive. Pulling your shoes off in an airport is meant to make you feel better. Not to get the bomber. A good terrorist would stick his bomb in the luggage and load it on the plane, not walk through the front door. A mildly creative terrorist will hit something we “weren’t expecting”, and then we would create a new system to make us think we are safe, until the next target reveals we weren’t. Our reaction will always send the cockroach scurrying in a different direction.
The notion that the only way to handle the challenge of Al Qaeda, oops sorry, wrong flavor of the month, ISIS, is to send more troops, is not merely wrong, it borders on lunacy! Why? We tried it in Iraq and Afghanistan. We spent trillions of dollars on a war that killed and maimed thousands of Americans, hundreds of thousand of Iraqis and Afghanis, and created a couple of basket case countries. Was a decade of fighting not long enough? Doesn’t the chaos in Syria and Libya continue to speak to our utter cluelessness? This is not a question of whether we have a “weak” President who doesn’t want to protect our interests, President Obama was right there with the Senator in pushing for intervention in Syria years ago.
More intervention won’t solve the conflict, because the conflict is caused by the intervention. These conflicts may seem like video games to us with our drones sending down hell from the sky. But for the people on the ground the reality is much more harsh and clear. We have created cycles of conflict that generate the next group of disaffected persons. It doesn’t matter what your religious, political, ethnic, or national loyalties are if you watch your family member or friend being killed by the actions of others. You become a life long advocate for some level of payback. It’s like a man who lives in trash filled house and can’t understand why the roach traps aren’t handling his infestation. Clean up the house moron! The filth is attracting the roaches. It doesn’t mean you won’t have a roach now and again, but it will be easier to handle when you do.
We seem to have a mentality that pervades both parties that they can’t stay out of other people’s business. It is all about power, nothing more, nothing less. The rest is just window dressing to manipulate us into being fearful and thus supportive of their agendas. If you disagree with this conclusion, then by all means call your Representative and encourage them to openly send American troops to Syria. While you are at it, drop your son or daughter off at the local Marine recruiter. It would seem hypocritical to ask others to risk those they love, without you being willing to do the same with those you love. Semper Fi!