Wednesday, March 16, 2011

10,000 Maniacs

All the world's a stage,
And all the men and women merely players:

They have their exits and their entrances;

And one man in his time plays many parts

--As You Like It
, Shakespeare

If I could change the world,

I would be the sunlight in your universe

You would think my love was really something good

Baby, if I could change the world

--If I Could
, Eric Clapton

In bitter defiance

she's spitting the corps

she's wet a brood short league for combat

my mother the war

Well acquainted with sorrow,
well with grief

--My Mother the War
, 10,000 Maniacs

Yellow journalism is alive and well, and MSM is a willing tool for politicians to incite the masses.

Witness The Week (3.18.11) cover featuring Muammer Qaddafi as a maniac on the loose, his keffiyah fashioned into sort of a baseball cap turned backwards, making the sparsely-mustaschioed Qaddafi look like a renegade punk in a Tonka truck (with Latino overtones.)

The thing is, while Muammer has always been a maniac, he is not on the loose -- he IS exercising his sovereign right to deal with rebels in a civil war. Is this not exactly what Abraham Lincoln and the U.S. Army did in the U.S. Civil War? Did we not rain brutality down upon the rebels?

Bringing U.S. actions up to today, our Counterinsurgency policy (COIN) has established two new governments following our invasions which resulted in Civil Wars. The U.S. response was to brutally suppress the rebels in both countries
-- so how does the U.S. condemn Qaddafi for exercising his own legitimate response to quell an uprising?

Muammer Qaddafi is in his own country and not rampaging half a world away. Even were there 2,000 rebel deaths, this is irrelevant when weighing Qaddafi's against U.S. campaigns in Iraq and Afghanistan, campaigns far more brutal and lacking in legitimacy.

Like Qaddafi, we killed rebels in Iraq and Afghanistan,
after our actions created them. Libya and Qaddafi has a more legitimate basis for military intervention than do the corrupt, manufactured governments of Iraq and Afghanistan.

If Qaddafi is a madman for seeking to suppress a rebellion, then we must apply the same descriptor to U.S. presidents. At least Muammer Qadaffi is contained, while U.S. powers roams the world like a hungry beast.

U.S. policy in the Middle East reminds Ranger of the Southern saying, "When you yell "fart", everyone comes running to get a whiff." We run to the fart every time one is loosed anywhere in the region. That's not being a smart feller, as Dad would say, but a fart smeller.

Why does the U.S. concern itself with every scenario blossoming on the world's stage while ignoring the stark realities within our own borders? I do not care if Libyans are killing Libyans or if the Shias or Sunnis rule Iraq. What need I care who rules Afghanistan since all of these problem areas are far from my hometown?

Let these countries fight their own Civil Wars as we did, the chips falling where they may; we fought a Civil War without a No-Fly zone.
Simply, the U.S. should not be in the Civil War business.

COIN and Civil War are sides of the same coin.


  1. Well, Ranger, in my mind, my thoughts are, "let Libya sort their own internal stuff out, call us when it's over."

    I'm all for da pips rights to self-determine, and I fully understand why the entrenched government would want to remain in da power seat...but since our silly asses have no reason to be involved, involved we should not be.
    Is it a humanitarian issue?
    Probably, but civil wars are always, always messy, and the difference between combatant and non-combatant becomes very difficult to ascertain when the local yokles with the bloodlust in their eyes are dressed like civilians.
    Besides...hasn't Afghanistan and Iraq taught us anything about civil wars?

  2. Sheer,
    What AFGH and IRQ should've taught us is that our involvement insures that the mess will devolve into a messier mess.
    IMO let them kill the hell out of each other since this detracts from their attention upon US targets, and it's cheaper in the long run.
    Chief made a cmt on RAW that Europe has a interest in this scenario, and so they do, but google MQ and Carlyle Group and US interest is more understandable.
    Thanks for commenting, i was feeling like the lone ranger.

  3. If you have dealings with them, they are your brothers.

  4. Well, the UN okayed the deal and the Brits and the French are already jumping in with both feet. The US has followed Jim's advice and is very cool to the proposition.

    Hopefully they will have better luck than we had in the last couple of excursions.

  5. To all,
    I pick my brothers.
    I've been thinking how ironic this scenario happens to be- in 56 the FR/BRITS gave up their influence and allowed the US to dominate in the Suez crisis, now the winds have changer direction.
    Very interesting turn about.

  6. jim:

    We all pick our brothers.
    However, once they are in the family,
    you can't un-pick them.

  7. jim-

    "he IS exercising his sovereign right to deal with rebels in a civil war"

    Disagree. According to MQ himself, he is nothing more than a private citizen, not the head of state at all. The nature of the state that MQ has created simply rested on the assumption that "the government" for what it was, would come to MQ "for guidance", but that does not make him "sovereign", nor does it give him the right to name his children as successors . . . sometimes cheap propaganda ploys actually have consequences . . . so he has in fact NO cover.

    I support intervention. I didn't at first, but given the humanitarian situation and the nature of MQ and his followers, I find no other recourse. It has to do with "moral literacy", or the lack thereof as Colonel Lang has pointed out . . .

    Face it, the real reason we are not interested in getting involved is due to the simple fact that there are no profitable boondoggles/sleazy deals for (Bush) political cronies to cash-in on, unlike say in Iraq in 2003 . . .

    America, or rather what today goes under that name, isn't interested in principles any more . . .

  8. So who else is slaughtering civilians in their own country, without much repercussion?

    With protests about Raymond Davis’ release still raging across Pakistan to the point that extraordinary levels of riot police are required around the US consulate in Lahore and Pakistani lawyers are burning the US flag, the CIA has recklessly escalated anti-US sentiment yet again by targeting a jirga, or meeting of village elders, in a drone strike in North Waziristan.

    Despite the fact that the UN has declared that US drone strikes in Pakistan “may well violate international humanitarian law“, the Obama administration still relies on drones as a central feature in its war in the Afghanistan-Pakistan theater. The latest strike, on Thursday, has sparked a huge outcry from civilians, the Pakistani military and Pakistani government officials.

    seydlitz, American foreign policy does have principles, but they don't seem like ones that I can support anymore.
    If I had my way, Obama would be out in less than a heartbeat and install someone more "liberal", as your quote from Balkin upstairs labels him.


  9. bb-

    What exactly would those principles be?

  10. The older I get, the more I find that I don't know.
    Although . . . I do get experience dealing with it.
    Having been brought up in the Christian Faith, I continue to discover many of the things I read and was taught there reveal their meanings or significance only through the power of passing time.
    AKA experience and honest reflection.
    The Bible tells us that the god of this world is not Jehovah, but Mammon, the embodiment of the love of money, power and influence.
    The Christian is told that he is of this world, but not part of it. Admittedly, that sound disocciative, but not really. The Christian is physically here, but looks for the New Jerusalem where he can find it.
    I believe that's the key to understanding the current ( and most likely since the start of the British-American colonies ) principles guiding our foreign policy.

    Many times you don't need the Bible or the Christian Faith to understand this, the "worldly" folk get it too.

    The Cassandra Syndrome, "We all are going to Hell in a HandBasket! Save yourselves before it's too late!"

    *clap clap clap - - and up go the ratings*

    Whether or not we're around in the next few years is subject to speculation.

    ooops. ;)

    A guy named Camping says the end of the world begins this coming May 21.

    Whaddya think?


  11. Well, looks like it's game on; I don't know if I'd call this Andy's "option B"; looks like full-on air war complete with SLCMs and airstrikes.

    It'll be interesting to see whether the Libyan rebels have enough moxie to take charge and use the Westerners as their CAS/FA without letting the Western airpower run their rebellion. So far there's nothing on the ground to suggest that they have a Washington; we'll have to see whether our force commander can play a reliable deGrasse...