Sepember 6, 2014

Just Say No

by Eric Margolis

Washington DC -- "We've got to stop's Assad...Hamas...Hezbollah...Taliban ...Shebab...the wicked Ruskis in Ukraine...those Yemeni Houthis...Iran...Sudan...Islamists in Libya and Mali...Boko Haram in Nigeria...the Red Chinese in Asia. Oh yes, and defend Latvia and fight the Lord's Army in Uganda.

That's the view in Washington where international police fever and growing hysteria over ISIS, the latest Mideast bogeyman, have gripped the nation, as elections near and politicians talk more nonsense than usual. . . .

Speaking as an old Mideast hand and veteran war correspondent, I say no plan is a good plan. Washington has made such an awful mess of its foreign policy that inaction is an increasingly attractive option. More little wars will mean the US falling into the trap set by Osama bin Laden.

Who came down from the mountain and said the US must police the globe, from the South China Sea to the jungles of Peru? After losing wars in Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia, Afghanistan, and Iraq, the US should reconsider its overly militarized foreign policy and exaggerated international pretensions. You can't rule the globe on money borrowed from China and Japan. . . .

Bombing Iraq now costs the US $7.5 million daily, or $562 million since June. This is just the opening ante for Nobel Peace Prize winner Barack Obama's very own Iraq War. George W. Bush's Iraq War cost well over $1 trillion. This at a time when 44 million Americans rely on food stamps and infrastructure is crumbling all over America.

As they say at the Betty Ford Clinic for drug and alcohol addicts, "just say no." Or, if Americans really want more jolly little wars around the globe, then raise taxes to pay for them instead of hiding their cost in the national debt.

Americans now face two conflicts in places they can't even find on the map.


"Seven Countries in Five Years"--Gen. Wesley Clark, Commonwealth Club, October 3, 2007

"What's Happening in Ukraine," The Wisdom Fund, March 3, 2014

"Africom Conducting Operations in Almost Every African Country," The Wisdom Fund, May 15, 2014

"ISIS a CIA/NATO 'Dirty War' Op?," The Wisdom Fund, June 24, 2014

"Syria: 'Washington Has Gone Stark Raving Mad'," The Wisdom Fund, August 27, 2014

[Those who want to wage war against this group assume that our use of military power is bound to yield a positive outcome. Their recommendations should carry a warning: Actual results may surprise.--Steve Chapman, "Ignorance Fuels the Calls for War,", September 4, 2014]

[The summit therefore is seemingly a last-ditch effort to preserve international tensions as the ratifying condition of Western supremacy.--Norman Pollack, "NATO, Spearhead of Western Fascism,", September 8, 2014]

[For the 20 years between 1991 and 2011 -- the interval between Operation Desert Storm and the final withdrawal of U.S. forces after a lengthy occupation of Iraq -- Washington policymakers, Republican and Democratic, relied on various forms of coercion to align Iraq with American expectations of how a country ought to run. . . .

Destroying what Obama calls the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant won't create an effective and legitimate Iraqi state. It won't restore the possibility of a democratic Egypt. It won't dissuade Saudi Arabia from funding jihadists. It won't pull Libya back from the brink of anarchy. It won't end the Syrian civil war. It won't bring peace and harmony to Somalia and Yemen. It won't persuade the Taliban to lay down their arms in Afghanistan. It won't end the perpetual crisis of Pakistan. It certainly won't resolve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.--Andrew J. Bacevich, "Obama is picking his targets in Iraq and Syria while missing the point,", September 8, 2014]

Bruce Ackerman, "Obama's Betrayal of the Constitution,", September 11, 2014

Robert Fisk, "Bingo! Here's another force of evil to be 'vanquished',", September 11, 2014

VIDEO: "The Rise of ISIS,", October 28, 2014

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