Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Totally Confused


“PROGRAMS!! PROGRAMS!! Get your programs!! You can’t tell the players without a program!!”
This old line from ballpark venders seems especially appropriate now that we are entering another war on terror in Syria and Iraq. Now that our Noble Peace Prize winning President has authorized the bombing of the third Arab country of his presidency, I as a citizen am thoroughly confused. My confusion stems from two sources.

First of all, where in the name of Jane Fonda is the American Anti-War Movement? You remember them, right? They are the guys who spent the eight years of George W. Bush’s presidency carrying signs calling for his arrest as a war criminal. They had those catchy chants, “BUSH LIED, PEOPLE DIED” and my personal favorite, “NO BLOOD FOR OIL.” With every stray bomb that killed even one Iraqi civilian, everyone from Code Pink to the New York Times would produce running counts of civilian deaths, insinuating that civilian deaths were proof positive of the darkness of Dick Cheney’s feeble heart. I could practically hear the drum beats from Pennsylvania Avenue all the way in Short Pump. But now that we are once again dropping stray bombs all over the place in Syria, hitting grain silos and killing Syrian civilians, suddenly the New York Times seems to have discovered the inevitability of collateral damage. I say this because I have yet to see any banner headlines decrying their deaths. As far as I can tell, the Anti-War people aren’t particularly incensed with President Obama’s unwillingness to obtain Congressional authority or even U.N. authority. I have spent most of my life listening to the Anti-War left prattle on about it being their duty to speak truth to power. Well, I’ve got a news flash for you guys…your guy IS the power. Speak to him!

Secondly, and just as mystifying to me. What’s with the talking heads on Fox News? Under normal circumstances, the projection of American military power in far flung places around the world is something to be celebrated no matter how dubious a connection there exists to our national security. When George W. Bush was President, his decisive, forceful interjection of our military into Iraq, especially during the famous surge was hailed from the rafters by the very same people who now project nothing but doubt and diffidence. It’s as if Charles Krauthammer has suddenly come down with a rare case of humility. In their defense, at least National Review has praised the President for doing the "right thing", but for the most part the usual war cheer-leaders have shown more passion in criticizing the President’s poor saluting skills than anything having to do with what looks to be an open-ended, multi-generational commitment of the United States military to war in the Middle East. It appears that their biggest problem seems to be that Barack Obama is the Commander In Chief.
So, I’m just totally confused.