No One Wins a War

War

I am re-posting this article because I believe it is the most important essay I have written in a long time. I have watched our country lose wars throughout my lifetime. Tens of thousands of great men and women died for nothing. Our nation and the world are more dangerous places because of wars waged on the innocent people of other nations. One of our political parties thrives on attacking other nations. They don’t fight wars; they profit from them. Only families and average individuals experience devastation when nations battle each other in wars neither can win. At nearly 70 years of age, I have witnessed the futility of war, I just wish my government was as wise.

 

Enormous Reason not to Vote Republican

 

It’s very easy for politicians to send men and women to their death. Their loved ones are never in harm’s way, and the worst that will happen for them is that their investments in the military industrial complex will rise in value. Our nation is the most warlike in modern history. Our government has never ‘met a war it didn’t like.’ The problem is that we’re not very good at it.

When I graduated from high school in 1964, the situation in Vietnam appeared to be escalating quickly. I, nor any of my family and friends understood why we were involved. We had studied the ‘Korean Conflict,’ and were fully aware that although a signed truce ended the ‘war,’ our nation failed to accomplish its goals.

A quick evaluation from even an average student revealed the fact that Vietnam was mostly jungle; there were no ‘battlefields,’ and an air war would be futile if the pilots couldn’t see the enemy. Our military was not prepared to wage guerilla warfare, and our generals wrongly believed that traditional military tactics would defeat a seemingly disorganized enemy.

When or military leaders left ‘with their tail between their legs’ in 1975 nothing had been accomplished. More than 58,000 of our finest were killed, and over 303,000 were injured. The nation was divided and the effect continues to linger into the 21st century; much of the present anger directed at our government is related to the tragedy which was Vietnam.

In 2001 our new and inexperienced president decided to invade Afghanistan under the pretense of capturing the villain who was the mastermind of the cowardly attacks on September 11, 2001. We are not entirely out of that nation today; nearly 2,400 Americans have lost their lives.

Then on March 20, 2003, this same president invaded the sovereign nation of Iraq. His administration claimed that the country’s leader, Saddam Hussein, was manufacturing ‘weapons of mass destruction.’ It was all a lie. When we lost that war in 2011, 4,491 Americans had been killed, and our nation was bankrupt. Once again the United States failed every one of its goals.

Now there is a war in Syria, and destabilization of the area allowed the growth of a new and brutal terrorist group; ISIS.

Last night the Republican Party held its twelfth debate. This was a unique evening. The childish actions of the previous eleven were not present. There was no name-calling, and only a few minor accusations. Regardless, none of their proposals were realistic, and some were just plain ridiculous.

One thing the all agreed on, was that they would immediately send ground troops to fight ISIS. How ignorant can these passengers of the clown car be? We can’t win a war in the Middle East, and the people who live in the region do not want us there.

In addition, our government would simply be granting ISIS its most fervent wish; that our nation would once again wage war against Muslims; we would be doing their recruiting for them. Imbeciles.

The two TEA Party darlings in the race, Cruz and Rubio, are constantly ranting about government spending. If it was a war, they would happily waste another trillion dollars, and order the production of thousands of new and unused body bags.

If you vote for a Republican, you are voting to send yourself, your son, your nephew, or your friend’s children to die in a foreign land; and in the end nothing will be accomplished which will favor the people of the United States.

We need leadership who cares about income inequality, poverty, education, healthcare, women’s rights, and the end of racism and bigotry which are more dangerous to our nation than an army of thugs and criminals.

Op-Ed

By James Turnage

Photo Courtesy of unai Pascual Loyarte

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