Thursday, June 26, 2014


Obama wanted to fundamentally transform the Republic.  If you take that to mean "end the Pax Americana" then he has largely succeeded.  The results from Libya, Egypt, Syria, Iraq, Afghanistan, Ukraine, the East China Sea, and other places shows pretty clearly that this is likely a very bad thing indeed for the world's population.

While I'm completely sympathetic to the notion that the USA should not be the World's Policeman (particularly when most people hate us for that), I wonder if the Nobel Peace Prize committee is having second thoughts.


A Reader said...

How does one say, "Damn. Now I feel dumb." or "No more noobs!" in Svensk?

Paul Bonneau said...

"The results from Libya, Egypt, Syria, Iraq, Afghanistan, Ukraine, the East China Sea, and other places shows pretty clearly that this is likely a very bad thing indeed for the world's population."

The question is whether the bad stuff happening to them is because the US is no longer the world's policeman, or because the habit still persists of thinking DC should run things, and the institutions and players are still largely in place, from back when DC did run things. In other words, the time to check if having no policeman is a good idea, is not immediately after the policeman leaves his beat permanently, but 20 years after, when people have had the time to compensate for his absence.

Richard Blaine said...

Paul - probably true. I think a lot of us knew that messing with middle east dictators was a loosing proposition. Okay, not just middle east, didn't work with Castro either and so many others. I'm not sure where the whole "Police of the World" thing came from - It's always been about two things, projecting power and financing the military industrial complex. The fact that we pick targets that we've been told are "bad guys" and that we're helping spread democracy is really just a distraction. Our success in spreading democracy has more to do with our past economic success that it does with any military operation.

Desert Storm was a good example of how it should be done if we're going to do it at all - kick the aggressor out and then STOP. We've never had the culture to back imperialism outside the continent. And we've never really engaged in it despite the claims. We just keep thinking that our straw man dictator will be better than the last one - and he never is.

Iraq was always going to be a mess once we ended Saddam. None of the elections in the middle east outside of Israel last even a generation so there's no history to keep it going. We'd have to go in and sit on them for two maybe three generations then slowly pull out to have a chance of democracy working, even then I wouldn't hold my breath. You'd have to work the way the communists do, take over the schools, teach generation after generation, until everyone who remembers how it was is dead. You have to be able to rewrite history with out all those pesky people poking holes in your story. That takes time. 50-60 years. Look at us, they're still working but there are still too many of us who see what's happening - maybe not enough to stop it though.

Borepatch said...

Richard, I must disagree that Desert Storm was the model of how to do it. We had to send a half million men to take him out of Kuwait. We should have taken him out of Baghdad then, as well. Our arab "allies" wouldn't have liked it, but what were they going to do about it?

Instead, Bush Sr left him in power, and we had troops in the Middle East for a decade. And Iraq was shooting at our planes every day for a decade. And Osama used this as part of his 1998 fatwa.

Next time we have to go anywhere, we should break a lot of stuff, break it fast, and tell the world that we will handsomely reward anyone who brings us the heads of our opponent's leaders.

And then get out, along with a "All y'all keep your noses clean, or there's a lot more where that came from."

"Nation Building" is a game or either suckers or K Street Think Tank whores.

Goober said...

If someone threatens us in a real manner, or actually attacks us in some way, then I will support action to go in, break stuff, kill the leaders, and then LEAVE. That's kind of what militaries are for.

Regardless of the consequences of leaving to the people there. Perhaps if the consequences of allowing people to be in charge that existentially threaten the United States are terrible enough, the people in these countries will start taking care of them, themselves, for fear of a shock and awe bombing campaign.

It is not our problem. I'm tired of everything being our problem. I'm tired of spending untold trillions and American lives rebuilding things we purposefully broke.

Put out the word: We won't fix what we break anymore. If you fuck with us, we'll kill you, bomb your cities, destroy your infrastructure, and send you on a one way trip to the stone age, and we won't clean up after we're done.


Don't threaten us...

Richard Blaine said...

Borepatch - Yes if it was our intent to take Saddam out. Given that we screwed the Kurds after having gotten them to rebel - yes, I concede your point - we probably should have gone in and booted his ass. Would have been a lot cheaper, and faster than coming back later. It would however still ended up destabilizing the region. (then again, just berating will do that.)

Honestly - I'd forgotten about the low level shooting match, flyovers, etc that followed in the years after. There were years when I avoided news & media because it was just too depressing - like today for example.

I just don't like it when we go into another country uninvited - we always stay longer than anyone wants, it always costs more money and lives, and we rarely gain anything.

As for the number of troops - I remember all the noise about the huge army and elite guard - I think every one was expecting a tougher fight. Lots of logistics support - lots.

At the moment I can't see why we'd go back after they asked us to leave. I do think Nato needs to think about plugging the hole that is the southern border of Turkey. Once the Sunni are done hammering the Shia to paste they'll turn toward Israel and then north. Europe will have even more trouble.

None of this stuff is simple, as much as I'd like it to be.