Less than three months into the Trump administration, we are in a serious foreign policy situation. In response to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad gassing his own people, we have launched many missiles at that country.
Before I continue, I’d like to take a moment to mock Brian Williams for calling this “beautiful.” Who other than dictators consider war to be beautiful? Answer: newsmen who want the big ratings war creates. But few are stupid enough to let this destructively selfish opinion be known.
People have, as usual when it comes to politics. formed a mix of opinions. Progressives have viewed this as having the potential to start another disastrous war not too long after Iraq ended.
Conservatives’ reaction has been… hypocrisy. They say that this is a complicated matter because it could lead to disaster yet that there are consequences to doing nothing about these strongmen. A few even go farther, blaming Barack Obama’s alleged weakness abroad for Assad feeling confident in gassing his own people. Why’s this hypocritical? Because the right mostly advised against intervening in Syria back when Obama considered it four years ago.
For those who think I’m being a nitpicker in this, when has the right ever hesitated when it comes to Al Gore and other environmentalists who use high-energy machines? Flip-flopping between the war/peace positions of George Patton and Abbie Hoffman as politically convenient deserves no less criticism.
Looking past the political divide and opportunistic media, I can see the possibility for disaster, good things, and a big, fat, zilch.
When we bomb countries, it can stoke tensions in a hurry (see the aforementioned war in Iraq, which created additional terrorism as it convinced the Arabs that America had gone crazy). On the other hand, these dictators are men of big mouths and tiny dicks. This kind of thing certainly can intimidate them.
And then there’s the cases of the bombing that only produces a standoff. I can remember numerous times that we bombed pre-war Iraq to keep its tyrant, Saddam Hussein from overstepping his bounds. Beyond that, nothing really happened.
One thing that does worry me is that President Trump ran on an anti-war platform and is contradicting it before he would have had time to give the matter careful thought. That is not an encouraging sign of strong decisiveness.