Here is an excerpt from today's NY Times:
..."The possibility of more troops for the war in Afghanistan was discussed Sunday on “Meet the Press.” Gov. Ed Rendell of Pennsylvania noted candidly that “our troops are tired and worn out.” More than 85 percent of the men and women in the Pennsylvania National Guard have already served in Iraq or Afghanistan. “Many of them have gone three or four times and they’re wasted,” said Mr. Rendell.
More troops? “Where are we going to find these troops?” the governor asked. “That’s what I want somebody to tell me.”
While we’re preparing to pour more resources into Afghanistan, the Economic Policy Institute is telling us that one in five American children is living in poverty, that nearly 35 percent of African-American children are living in poverty, and that the unemployment crisis is pushing us toward a point in the coming years where more than half of all black children in this country will be poor"...
Is it not clear to the White House that "nation building" is more urgently needed in US of A than in Afghanistan or in Iraq. Why is it necessary to continue the follies of the previous administration that have been draining precious resources badly needed at home.
Why does Obama not learn from Lyndon B Johnson's mistakes of not wanting to be seen as "weak" by de-escalating the war?
That war ultimately led to national humiliation off the rooftop of the US Embassy in Saigon, now Ho Chi Ming City.
An erosion from within a country, any country, is more of a threat to its national security than a bunch of cunning terrorists hiding in the caves in Pakistan/Afghanistan's no man land.
All past empires declines were preceded by economic weakness and too much deviations from its core values on which these empires had been anchored.
The best way to boost the national security of USA is to be strong itself -- Repair its national balance sheets. Increase investment in education. Reduce unemployment. Let the rest of the world look up America once again. That's the best long term solution to strengthening its national security.
Moral declines as suggested by this report below are a bad omen of worse things to come.
This report here sadly suggests how far the USA has gone down the pay of eroding its national morality for expediency.
In a previous blog I berated Tom Friedman, the famous Flat World author and columnist, for not calling a Spade a Mercenary, I brought up the subject of the moral pitfalls of dropping unpleasant actions off the national moral balance sheets by outsourcing military behavior Geneva Conventions would frown on.
The largest outsourced extension is Blackwater, a de facto affiliate of the Pentagon financed by taxpayers money but civilian owned, and most profitably so.
I understand the logistical necessity of having a Blackwater due to budgetary constraints and concerns of violating military codes by uniformed soldiers.
But let's not kid ourselves. No one would NOT equate Blackwater with Pentagon, and by extension with the entire government of USA.
Sad day for those who have always had the highest regards for the US military. All those years of training at West Point, Annapolis, Air Force Academy are being soiled by these two disastrous wars in Iraq and now in Afghanistan as if one Vietnam War was not enough to bring down the moral fibre of this once great nation.
Georg Hegel, the great German philosophy once lamented how foolish nations could be with his famous soundbite: "History repeats itself". To which one of his famous intellectual descendents rejoined: "First time as tragedy, second time as farce".
Small quiz: who was that guy?