With wars (that aren’t really wars) going on everywhere one looks, with U.S. troops occupying much of the known world, we are constantly reminded that we should “support our troops”.
Seems a good and patriotic thing to do but, what does this really mean?
For my part, I totally support the troops, to the extent that I appreciate their willingness to go into harm’s way to try to protect me and my country. I want them to be the best trained, best equipped and to have the best facilities that can be made available to them.
What I DO NOT support is having our military personnel sent into harm’s way for frivolous reasons. I know that our military personnel are trained to think that whatever their government asks them to do is, automatically, their patriotic duty. But this is simply not true and the evidence makes this clearer by the day.
To our military personnel I say: “You are being misused, you are being lied to and you are being sent to kill and be killed to further enhance the wealth and power of people who care as much about your well being as they do that of insects. In saying this, I mean no insult whatever to the fine men and women who honestly think their sacrifices are for a good cause. Indeed, I am incensed on your behalf that we have so-called “leaders” who would do this to you.
The United States Armed Forces, and the organizations that support them, are constitutionally intended to defend the United States of America, its Constitution, and its citizens from destruction or conquest by a foreign power.
It was not intended for ANYTHING ELSE! It was not intended for nation building, it was not intended to establish economic or political hegemony, it was not intended for policing nations whose activities pose no direct threat to the United States, it was not intended to enhance a candidate’s election prospects, and it most certainly was not intended as a tool for ushering in a “new world order”.
Yet, it is being used for all of the above. At the expense of significant treasure, at the even more significant loss of or damage to human life, and, at the very least, at the expense of the disruption of the lives of military families. All this is for what? To make America safer you say? Then please explain how any of our recent military adventures have truly enhanced the safety of America and Americans:
→ Is the nuclear threat from rogue nations being reduced? No. (North Korea and Iran continue their nuclear programs with impunity while the Pakistani nuclear arsenal is ever more likely to fall into the hands of Islamic radicals.)
→ Is respect for our nation improving among the other nations of the world? No. (We constantly do everything we can to offend our allies while our enemies think we are stupid.)
→ Has the threat from militant Islam been reduced? No. (If the threat were being reduced, they why ever would domestic measures, such as invasions of personal privacy at airports and warrant-less home invasions, be on the increase?)
→ Has our “nation building” actually built any new democratic republics? I say not a chance. If you disagree, please respond with an example that can be supported with facts.
→ Is our military adventurism actually making our nation weaker, by draining our treasury and squandering whatever international goodwill we still have? YES!
So, I ask again, what does it really mean to support our troops? Might it really mean limiting their use and their exposure to danger by limiting their use to that intended by our Constitution? I think so.
My friends, it is past time to stop letting ourselves become convinced that the unnecessary, unconstitutional killing and maiming of our children, our brothers and our sisters is somehow patriotic. It is past time to understand that war is the ultimate expression of the failure of humans to behave rationally.
Humanity may never experience a world that is completely free of war. But, if wars must be fought, it should only be in response to a threat to our national survival. And, when they must be fought, the effort must involve us all, as a nation united, rather than sending some of our children, brothers and sisters off to die in some useless wasteland while the rest of us stay home and enjoy the good life.
This would truly be supporting our troops and would truly be patriotic. Think about it.
Troy L Robinson