War hasn’t been popular since WWII – although, I understand there were some anti-war dudes back then too – by and large, the country supported it. Many believed it would be the end of the world as we knew it and that it would all be for naught – but if we hadn’t entered WWII (spurred on by an unprovoked attack on American soil – any of this sound familiar?) we’d all be speaking German and possibly have only the color brown in our wardrobes.
Korea was an unpopular war – but I think mostly because we didn’t exactly finish the job. As evidenced by what’s going on in Korea today. A little fat dude with bad hair nuclear-izing his country, while most of his citizens starve to death (ah, the better to control them).
But, by far, I think the most unpopular war was Vietnam. Yep, that was stinker. Those who were tuning out, (big kudos to Timothy Leary) took exception to the idea that perhaps they might have to stand the watch for their country. They sure did take advantage of their personal freedoms but they sure didn’t want to have to actually defend them or protect them. Nah, that was better done by others. And they took it a step further too – by rejecting everything that was up to that point normal and American. Our military suddenly was the bad guy. The country was the bad guy. We who may have supported the fight against communism, were murderers, rapists and baby killers. Soldiers were spit upon and made to feel disgrace, all for the horrible act of going when their country called. And after years of war and thousands lost, the veterans of that war were at best ignored, and at worst tossed out like yesterdays’ trash. And it was decades before they were even thanked (much less honored) for their service. Do you remember that parade through New York City? I do. And I sat and wondered how many in that cheering crowd had made it their business to spit on these brave men and women just a few years before.
I wondered too, if all the voices drowning out common sense and reality, hadn’t been so loud if we’d have been able to finish the job there. If the millions who were murdered, tortured and turned into slaves of the Communist regime that claimed Vietnam after we left, would have had different lives. Better lives. I think they would have – but no, I don’t know.
I’m very familiar with all the arguments against war. It’s inhumane, it kills innocent civilians, we aren’t the world’s babysitter, it’s none of our business, it’s really a civil war, we shouldn’t be so imperialistic and on and on. That we are an evolved society and we should not have to resort to war to resolve our differences. We should be living on a higher plane and caring for our fellows. Let the United Nations resolve the woes of the world with diplomacy and charitable acts toward those less fortunate.
Well, I suppose those arguments have some validity. I don’t like the idea of killing people or being killed. I don’t like the idea of innocent civilians being killed because they were in the wrong place at the wrong time. I too, would like to see us all live better, more evolved lives. There’s only one problem. We aren’t.
While technology races from one new discovery and innovation to the next – we aren’t anywhere near to catching up in that progression. People still hate. People still crave power. People still give in to their baser instincts. People still seek to control others in their greed and craving for riches and land. In other words, the things that actually cause war, still exist.
Bill Gates, Apple Computer, Starbuck’s Coffee and Ben and Jerry’s Ice Cream have done nothing to actually alleviate the human conditions that breed war. They sure have made our lives more convenient and even tastier, but they haven’t changed men’s hearts or souls. And to me, that is what one must do in order to live in a world without war and to have peace.
What people do not like to consider or face, is that indeed, there really is evil in this world. And they are personified by the likes of Kim, Hussein, Chavez, Castro, Hitler, Mussolini, Pol Pot, et. al. Though they are probably a very small percentage of the population, the havoc they can wreak once given any sort of power is monstrous.
It only took a handful of brainwashed men and three planes to kill 3,000 of our citizens – and we didn’t even know who they were. They were not public figures, politicians, celebrities, religious leaders or 3rd world despots – they were ordinary men on a mission. One bred by hatred and fueled by denying these men and millions others, a normal life. Food, clothing, housing, a peaceful existence. If you starve a man long enough, it takes very little to turn them into whatever you want to turn them into. Killers. Priests. Religious zealots. Slaves.
So, the arguments to me, pro or con are beside the point. You’re arguing the wrong issue. The issue isn’t really whether war is right or wrong, good or bad. The issue is, how can we change the hearts and souls of men so they do not want to go to war in the first place?