U.S. Navy/Chief Mass Communication Specialist Keith Deviney
Poor President Obama, as Colin Powell pointed out in endorsing him Thursday, clearly holds what should be a winning hand in the war-on-terror game, and yet Mitt Romney and his neocon speechwriters won't cut him any slack. Suddenly it's not Osama bin Laden and al-Qaida that matter, but rather the military threat from Red China that is killing us with slick iPhones and cheap solar panels.
Throw in some good old Russia baiting, and if Romney has his way, the military-industrial complex will get its beloved Cold War back despite the fact that the communist threat is now one of those conquering space on the shelves at Wal-Mart. Obama, the naive community organizer, thinks the foreign policy debate is about national security, but Romney, the quintessential vulture capitalist, knows that it's always been about maximizing profit.
That is the problem with the war on terror that Obama inherited from George W. Bush but has successfully reissued as his own product line; it's got all the patriotic bells and whistles, but as a profit center, it sucks. You just can't logically justify spending trillions of dollars on building ever more sophisticated weapons to defeat a 9/11 style enemy equipped with weapons that can be purchased at Home Depot for a couple of hundred bucks. Another $2 billion nuclear sub, in addition to the two we already turn out every year, isn't very useful in hunting down potential hijackers based in some desert outpost or even in an apartment in Hamburg, Germany.
Bush and his neocon coterie recognized the glaring irrelevance of the Cold War-era arsenal in the fight against terrorism, and that is why they invaded Iraq instead of focusing on al-Qaida and its supporters in Afghanistan. As Donald Rumsfeld put it, "there aren't any good targets in Afghanistan and there are a lot of good targets in Iraq," meaning that we could pretend it was the Normandy landing all over again and count on an embedded media to mindlessly celebrate rolling out the mothballed war toys. There had to be another use for B-2 stealth bombers other than flying over the Super Bowl.