So Trump is pulling out of Syria and Afghanistan. Most of the reporting says this is bad because US forces are necessary to stabilize the area. There’s a problem with this.
After 30 years in the military and gaining a Master’s degree in national security at the Air Force year long Air War Collage (equivalent to some 139 college credits), this makes me wonder. If that logic is accepted as a legitimate reason to keep forces overseas, I see two issues:
- When can US forces ever come home? Won’t their removal always (by definition) create a power vacuum where other forces with vie for dominance? Isn’t this always true regardless of what nation or country? The “create a vacuum” argument means we never leave.
- Well.. maybe if we stay there long enough, we can eradicate enough bad forces so that they won’t try to come in and take over. C’mon, are you being reasonable? When in history – ever – has any good force eradicated all the bad forces? The war in Afghanistan has been going on since 2001. After nearly 18 years, maybe we’ve done all we can do? If there was more to do, we’d have already done it.
Constant presence over seas is becoming the norm. Is this the right way to gain security for our people? Constant war. Constant cost in lieu of other national needs, which includes dealing with debt. Instead, deploying military as a way of life shifts the social burden onto the invisible deployed military members. Here at home we get to critique war, pretend it isn’t happening, and believe that the cost is low because the pain is felt by other families. Sheesh. How selfish.
This issue has become a domestic political toy. Lefties liked stopping the war when Obama said it. Now, of course, they’re put in the awkward position of arguing against stopping the fighting because Trump is doing it. Politics. Whatever.
I say do a war or conflict when necessary, but don’t accept it as normal. Watch the Star Trek show, “A Taste of Armageddon“. Kirk says to the Ambassador who wants a state of gently and aseptically killing people to continue,
“Death, destruction, disease, horror. That’s what war is all about, Anan. That’s what makes it a thing to be avoided. You’ve made it neat and painless. So neat and painless, you’ve had no reason to stop it. And you’ve had it for five hundred years. Since it seems to be the only way I can save my crew and my ship, I’m going to end it for you, one way or another. Mister Ambassador”
I think Trump sees the destruction of America’s ideals as his crew and ship.