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John McCain, “Mr. Putin You Go Down There”

I have come up with some advice for Senator John McCain, Arizona –(The Senator who never met a war he didn’t like) –to give to his enemy Vladimir Putin. Senator McCain was beside himself that those impertinent Russian’s are trying to take over our glorious efforts in Syria. To combat Russian airpower, he suggested we ship handheld surface-to-air missile “stingers” to the Jihadists to use against the Russian Air Force. The Senator said, “We might do what we did in Afghanistan many years ago, to give those guys the ability to shoot down those {Russian} planes, that equipment is available.” My advice to the Senator is the same advice given by Jack Crab the main character in the movie Little Big Man, to George Armstrong Custer. Mr. McCain has two options. He can play the character of Jack Crab or he can play the character of George Armstrong Custer.

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In this movie a young Dustin Hoffman plays the main character, Jack Crabb. Richard Mulligan brilliantly plays the character of George Armstrong Custer. Earlier in the movie, Custer leads his troops in the Battle of the Washita, in western Oklahoma, where he wipes out a tribe of mainly women and children peacefully lodged in their winter encampment.   Jack, a white, having been kidnapped and adopted earlier in his life by the tribe, is present during the massacre and barely escapes with his life.

As the tribe flees from the attacking cavalry, Jack’s life is saved when just before a soldier is about to kill him, the trooper realizes that Jack’s not an Indian. Later in the movie, Jack crosses paths with Custer in Montana before the Battle of the Little Big Horn. In the perfect symmetry of a good story that only Hollywood can provide, Jack’s life is saved when one of the braves recognizes him as Little Big Man, Jack’s Indian name. Jack becomes the sole survivor of the Battle of the Little Big Horn. Before the battle, Jack and Custer have this confrontation.

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Custer: This man will be invaluable to me, Major.

Major: Invaluable, sir?

Custer: I almost hanged him as a renegade.

Custer: Now he asks to be a scout. Oh, his game is very obvious: to lead me away from his Indian friends.

Major: Well, I still don’t quite follow you, General.

Custer: Anything that man tells me will be a lie. Therefore, he will be a perfect reverse barometer.

Major: But, sir, wouldn’t it be best to send a squad down Medicine Tail Coulee?

Custer: No, it wouldn’t.

Major: May I ask, sir, why it wouldn’t?

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Custer: Because it would cost us the vital element of surprise.

Major: Surprise? They know we’re here.

Custer: But they don’t know that I intend to attack them without mercy.

Major:   That’s no surprise.

Custer:   Of course it is. Nothing is more surprising than the attack without mercy.

Major: General, I must protest this impetuous decision.

Custer: A Custer decision, impetuous?

Custer: What do you say, mule skinner? Should I go down there, or withdraw?

INTERNAL NARRATION- Jack Crab: I had him. But this time what I held in my hand wasn’t a knife, but the truth.

JACK CRAB: General,..you go down there.

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Custer: You’re saying, go into the coulee?

Jack Crabb: Yes, sir. There are thousands of Indians down there,…and when they get done with you,… there won’t be nothing left but a greasy spot. This ain’t the Washita River, General,… and them ain’t helpless women and children waiting for you. They’re Cheyenne brave, and Sioux. You go down there if you got the nerve.

Custer: Still trying to outsmart me, aren’t you, mule skinner. You want me to think that you don’t want me to go down there,… ..but the subtle truth is you really don’t want me to go down there. Well, are you reassured now, Major?

Custer: Men of the Seventh. The hour of victory is at hand! Onward to Little Bighorn and glory! We’ve caught them napping! Sound the charge!


John McCain is just like George Armstrong Custer in that both had enjoyed adulation based on prior feats of bravery and fortitude. Custer in his dashing and daring cavalry raids of the Civil War and McCain in the heroic stoicism he displayed during his 5 years of captivity in a North Vietnamese POW camp. Both were rightfully commended for their service to their country in time of war. But times change. The arrogance of power and fame often prevent the hero from seeing the truth of a different time. Custer can’t seem to think clearly about his old foe the Indians. He is counting on the attack without mercy and the reverse barometer reading of Jack’s advise as proof of his impending success.

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George Armstrong Custer: Civil War Hero who Dies at the Battle of the Little Big Horn

Likewise, McCain’s cold war thinking is all his mind can absorb when the topic is Russia. Cooperation with a former foe is not possible even when it might be useful. He can’t see that a way of thinking that is perfectly relevant in another time may no longer have the same relevance today. Just like the Major in Custer’s conversation, who clearly sees the follies of Custer’s decision, we are all left standing dumfounded at the ramblings of McCain as he seems unable to comprehend the danger of putting missiles in the hands of Jihadists to shoot down Russian fighter planes. Do we want WWIII? Do we want the Jihadists using these weapons against our air force or eventually our airliners?

Senator John McCain, Arizona

Senator John McCain, Arizona

Senator McCain seems most worried that Russia’s entry into the region will inevitably lead to Russian control and dominance. That proposition seems problematic. If the Russians were fantastically successful militarily, about all they could hope to achieve is to stabilize Assad’s regime and thin out some of the Jihadists.  A few thousand Russians aren’t going to march across Turkey, move into Saudi Arabia, or threaten Israel. They don’t have the men, money, or political cover to get that ambitious. They want to keep their port access to the region by keeping their ally in power and influence the pipeline construction. Russians marching across the Middle East is a ridiculous notion. Besides, the Russians couldn’t defeat Afghanistan in their former incarnation as the Soviet Union, when they were twice as large as they are now. Our problem is not the difficulty presented by Russia putting boots on the ground and resisting our efforts of Syrian regime change, but rather their actions have exposed the folly of our contradictory policies.

Who Created the ISIS Frankenstein?

Who Created the ISIS Frankenstein?

Putin has put our country in the uncomfortable position of showing up to fight ISIS, after we have declared ISIS the threat of the world, knowing we were bluffing. He then watches us squirm because everyone knows that ISIS is a creation of the CIA and our allies and that we really just want to use ISIS as an excuse to intervene in Syria. Of course we loudly protest that the Russian’s are bombing the Free Syrian Army. It is neither free nor especially Syrian. It is a band of Jihadists that we have labeled moderate to give the appearance that we are supporting the “good guys.”

The Free Syrian Army is a policy paper army that trains a few guys to hand over their American supplied weapons to their Jihadist brothers. The fighters that we are actually relying on to remove Assad are al-Qaeda Jihadists and no one will confuse them with Thomas Jefferson or George Washington. Of course the Russian’s are bombing our brand of Jihadists as well as others. Let there be no doubt, they are piggy backing on the ISIS threat as justification to save their Syrian ally, Bashar al-Assad. But inevitably the Russians will be confronted with our Frankenstein, ISIS, and its cohorts. Then we will all see if ISIS is a real threat or a large, brainless, monster that runs at the sight of a torch in the form of Russian napalm.

The real issue for Senator McCain is that he “thinks” our country’s pride and pre-eminent position has been besmirched because someone else wanted to join the dinner party. What he never seems to comprehend is that our country, during both Republican and Democratic administrations, has displayed an uncanny ability to serve up one shit sandwich after another. Then we are perplexed when the regions players don’t like what is on the menu: Afghanistan- mayhem, Libya- disorder, Iraq- chaos, Syria- utter chaos.   We have destabilized the region in attempting to remove a dictator, Assad, who seems rather tame by the region’s standards of strongmen. We have created a breeding ground for every young, disaffected, lonely, chipped-shouldered Jihadist that dreams of dying. Now the dear Senator wants to amp up that policy by injecting hand held stingers into the mix. Would anyone like to take a trip to Europe on a plane once those missiles are delivered?

Vladimir Putin, Russian President

Vladimir Putin, Russian President

If the Senator truly thinks our interests are threatened by the Russian entry into this quagmire, then I suggest the following approach. The Senator can nobly rise to the floor of the Senate and demonstrate that he is both stronger and braver than Vladimir Putin. Senator John McCain should propose that the U.S. immediately restart the draft and call up 600,000 troops. This new army will be sent into the Middle East to clean up the mess. Also, we will raise the federal income tax 20%, across the board, to pay for the Middle Eastern Expeditionary Force.

American Tanks In Baghdad, Next Stop Tehran!

American Tanks In Baghdad, Next Stop Tehran!

After taking Damascus, this force will then march to Bagdad to finish what we started in Iraq before pushing on to Iran to take out the Ayatollahs. Senator McCain will justify the war as a battle for peace in our time; a fight for freedom; a battle for all things good and decent, and a boost to the economy. One more bonus, since we are fighting Israel’s nemesis Iran, we know that we will have God on our side or at the very least we can kick-start Armageddon! With our good and noble example, they will build their own democratic institutions as they welcome us as liberators!

Is that a good plan? Obviously not. We can’t fix chaos. It won’t happen. This is a political and religious war that no number of troops or money will fix. You can’t fix a thousand year conflict with more bombs and bullets. This region is going to have to bleed until enough of the hatred has been exhausted to allow voices of reason to rise from the rubble and seek some stability. Our goal should be to get out of the way, control the crazies* as best we can, and keep the oil flowing. What a brilliant idea! Oh no sorry, sorry this is an actual foreign policy strategy called containment. It has been used with some success over the years.

But that all assumes that our misguided strategy is honorable. The Senator holds a worldview that suggests the American government’s actions are merely foolish while its intentions are noble. McCain’s blindness is what many American’s are painfully coming to question: Maybe the “system”, the elites of our country and the world, are pursuing a policy of turmoil to keep the tribes warring against each other to facilitate constant war for control and profits?

So what should be done? I have an idea. We have been invited to this Syrian party several times, and have refused the invitation.   First, President Obama asked the Congress for permission to put boots on the ground. They refused. Second, when ISIS reared it ugly head and we were barraged with the Barbaric Act of the Week, efforts were made to get us even more involved, but that has been resisted. We didn’t exactly say no, as we started the bombing campaign, but we didn’t send large numbers of ground troops. Well if beheadings, drowning’s, burnings, and crucifixions don’t do the trick, what if those bad ole Ruskies got invited to the party. It’s like the girl who wants to get one guy’s attention by talking to another guy. Senator McCain seems to be the shunned suitor who is a bit agitated by Syria’s flirting with Russia. Will the third time be a charm to get some American boots on the ground?

This is One Dance We Should Avoid

This is One Dance We Should Avoid

This is another invitation we should just ignore. JUST SAY NO. Donald Trump fell into a good idea, let the Russian’s get some of that Syrian action which they are now getting. Like General Custer in the movie, John McCain is not logically looking at the facts on the ground. He relies on tortured, self-deceiving rationales to arrive at his conclusions. If Senator McCain really wants to bleed the Russians, then he should draw at least two conclusions from the knowledge of the Little Big Horn Battle as portrayed in the movie:

First, don’t send American’s into that coulee.

Second, encourage Mr. Putin to go down into that coulee.


As Jack Crabb told Custer,

“This ain’t the Washita River, General,… and them ain’t

helpless women and children waiting for you. You go

down there if you got the nerve.”

*{Note: “Crazies” is used above by this author to describe Jihadists who enjoy cutting off people’s head in the name of God. Contrasting, John McCain’s use of the term “Crazies” as a term that means engaged, opinionated, American’s who hold any of these positions: support Presidential Candidates other than those that have Bush for a last name, oppose open borders, feel the political class has abandoned ordinary Americans, feel the Constitution is not irrelevant, or those who are weary of constant war. These views are decidedly not “Crazy” whether you agree with them or not.

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