[sixties-l] War Some More

From: Jerry West (record@island.net)
Date: Mon Sep 23 2002 - 15:24:15 EDT

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    September 25, 2002

    Editor's Corner

    It has been over 35 years and a lot of miles since I
    left the battlefields of Vietnam. Yet, even after
    all those years that time still remains very much
    alive in my thoughts. It was a war that history is
    indicating may have been justified with a lie, the
    Gulf of Tonkin incident. A war it seems prolonged by
    Henry Kissinger for domestic political reasons, for
    which tens of thousands of young US service men and
    women paid with their lives, not to mention
    Vietnamese and assorted allies.

    Vietnam was not the first war ever fought on false
    pretenses, not even for the United States, nor
    undoubtedly will it be the last. Currently we see
    history repeating itself again as George W. Bush
    keeps looking for excuses to invade Iraq. Unless
    wiser heads prevail, without doubt he will come up
    with something, no matter how fallacious or
    ridiculous, to get the war he seems to so desperately
    crave. If he does it will not be the Supreme Court
    coming to the rescue to declare the winner and loser.
    It will be decided with the lives of many people who
    will have little choice over whether or not they die
    in this politically motivated misadventure.

    George and I are the same age, and many of his
    advisors and cabinet members come from our
    generation. One would think that they would have
    learned something about war from the lessons of
    Vietnam, but it appears that they have not, except
    Colin Powell. Powell is not keen on this war, and
    wisely so, but he had experience in Vietnam. Bush,
    on the other hand, hid out in the National Guard
    during the war and even then failed to show up for
    duty. Ashcroft, Cheney and others all managed to
    duck out when it was their turn to serve, as did many
    of the pro war stars in Congress and the media.

    The name for folks like GW Bush is Chickenhawk, a
    term that denotes someone who urges war and talks
    patriotism, but avoids their responsibility and hides
    out under one excuse or another when they have the
    opportunity to be patriots and serve. It is into the
    hands of such bellicose hypocrites as these that
    control of the most powerful nation on the planet has
    fallen. We all should be very concerned.

    It is bad enough that these folks want to pick fights
    with little countries and waste the lives of
    thousands, maybe millions, but they also want to
    control the world. Last week the Bush administration
    published a 33 page document outlining the direction
    of US policy. In it they state that no country will
    be allowed to become as powerful as the United
    States. It points out that where American interests
    are at stake, there will be no compromises. It urges
    other nations to adopt US economic policies, and says
    that the International Criminal Court will have no
    jurisdiction over US citizens.

    Over fifty years ago in the wake of WWII the nations
    of the world formed the United Nations to work out
    international differences and resolve issues in a
    peaceful manner. The system has not been perfect,
    but as things like the International Criminal Court
    come on line we move slowly forward to a more
    cooperative, just and stable world society. The
    current direction of the United States threatens this
    progress and turns us once again down the path where
    a powerful nation seeks increasing domination over

    Some have likened the situation with Iraq to the one
    in Europe in the late 1930s, and have warned that we
    should learn the lessons of Munich and stop Saddam
    Hussein now. The flaw in this is that relatively
    weak Iraq is nowhere near being analogous to the
    military and industrial giant that was Germany. An
    unsavory regime, probably, a threat to conquer major
    portions of the globe, not likely. Worth any number
    of innocent lives, not at all. Rather than thinking
    of Iraq as Germany, perhaps Poland would be a better

    Jerry West

    Copyright 2002, West's International

    Jerry West

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