Time to get back to regular old blogging and give my “Messages of mhere” tale a break. This clueless president of ours seems to have found his backbone (or at least the pushy women behind him found theirs) and he wants to use the US military for another doomed foray into a Mid-East swirling sand devil – this time Syria, where it defies strategic sense to intervene. Where is the US vital national interest in this Syrian civil war? Oh, we don’t have one? No problem, Samantha Power (aka Summer Vacation Sam) just returned to her post and she’s ready to do battle for all the victims of genocide in the world and lucky girl that she is, she now has the US military (whom she despises as genocidal maniacs) to put power to her radical ideas on how to stop genocide. Lest you doubt her strategic prowess, she’s a bonafide “expert” on genocide, even wrote a book, “A Problem from Hell: America and the Age of Genocide”.
After more than a decade of short-sighted, poorly planned forays into deposing troublesome tyrants in the Muslim world, we still haven’t learned the simple takeaway lessons. Before we fire the first shot, we need to do the serious strategic-thinking. Woefully, we lack very many solid strategic thinkers in the world of elected political leadership. Fewer and fewer of our elected officials ever served in uniform, which used to be the premiere venue to learn serious strategic-thinking skills and out of the few prior-service elected officials we do have, most of them fell into the “social-engineering” side of the military, which has been sidelining serious military planning for the past 30 years. For instance we have a war hero lady in Congress, who definitely served honorably, but she is mired in the feminism-before-all-else track in the military, so she views all issues from the “social-engineering” viewpoint and one can bet she isn’t real concerned with studying military history or wanting to hear any truths that get in the way of her liberal politics. On the right of course, we have John McCain, who can switch positions so quickly, that makes one wonder, who is putting the screws to him, or least libertybelle has wondered if he was compromised decades ago. Alas, that train of thought, where people are compromised by foreign entities, no longer holds sway in Washington obviously. We even have a Secretary of State who denounced the military he served and we’re supposed to “trust” his judgment. Now, of course he followed the Secretary of State, who made lying to cover her husband’s indiscretions a cottage industry, but alas she is wonderful too, even in light of angrily declaring, “what difference does it make” as to why her ambassador and three other Americans died while under attack at some unprotected State Department facility in the bad part of town in Libya (probably gunrunning to Syria).
This track highlights our strategic-thinking brain trust (Lord, help us all). And at the top is President Obama, the champion of creating fictional “narratives” and “composites”, that substitute for facts, the truth and a serious education. Alas, he rides a Harvard degree as his “proof” he’s educated (Lord, help us all again). This man understands far left political ideology, holds the US military in contempt and is weak, vain and totally clueless on military matters, yet he is our Commander-In-Chief. So, we have a bunch of vain feminist harpies, Genghis Khan John Kerry and Composite Barack formulating this attack on Syria. They sure don’t want to hear anyone from the military telling them this is a bad idea.
Now leftist academics attack the Westphalian system, but it is the the international system of states and view of national sovereignty that the world operates under. To determine national interest the most basic requirement is to pull out a map (yes, we need maps) and then you start looking at the neighborhood you’re thinking of getting involved in. You look at things like waterways, access to other countries of interest to you, natural resources that matter to you. You read up on the history and study the people. You ask yourself, why is the fate of this country of importance to my own country? That is step one – determine a vital national interest. If there really is a vital national interest it usually hits you in the face quickly – you don’t have to parse it or look under rocks for it. If you think you have a vital national interest worthy of committing US military force to defending, then you look at the terrain (yes, before you launch any attack you consider the terrain, climate and any natural obstacles or unusual terrain features. You had better be thinking about supply lines, no matter what type of attack you plan, because if you don’t think of that, then you are unfit to be the Commander-in-Chief of the United States Armed Forces (I am still angry at the Bush administration for allowing such convoluted, polluted supply routes to Afghanistan – subject to attack and political blackmail). You decide on clear-cut military objectives and then you begin planning how best to defend your national interest with the arsenal you have at hand. And here comes the crucial often overlooked step – you’ve got to think ahead to what potential outcomes could ensue from your attack. I spent most of my life as a homemaker, what would I know right? Oh well, it looks like Gumby Barack has found his spine and is ready to act and his minions hauled out the Libya trope, “It will last hours, not days” to quell any American anxiety.
If you want some real strategic commentary, Ralph Peters wrote a very good column on our Syria policy a couple days ago at the New York Post titled, “Obama’s third war”. Ralph begins this column with the line , “You might as well try to teach a snake to juggle as hope the Obama administration will think strategically.”, which is about the nicest thing he has to say about this proposed attack on Syria.