"An empire is an immense egotism," said Ralph Waldo Emerson.
For the past 45 years, the United States, with 570,000 military personnel on 700 bases in 120 countries, maintained (s) an empire around the world. America created the Korean, Vietnam, Desert Storm and Iraq Wars. Deaths mounted into the millions. Human suffering registered off the Richter scale of misery.
All of their deaths and our deaths meant nothing. All could have been avoided with more intelligent minds at work for peaceful co-existence on this planet.
Fifteen years ago, Osama bin Laden demanded that America retreat from Muslim lands. We ignored him. The Muslim world did not want us occupying their turf. Bin Laden didn't want Western culture "polluting" Islamic law and culture. Muslims view America as the "Great Satan" of the Western world. Our women wear what they please. We celebrate in Sin City Las Vegas. We encourage women to vote, to speak, seek divorce, to teach, to be independent, and run for political office. We accept all races, creeds, and colors. We accept homosexuals. We do not allow honor killings, female genital mutilation, promote suicide bombings or arranged marriages of 10 year old girls.
We failed to leave. Osama bin Laden exacted his revenge. We may have killed him last Sunday, but we are slowly and effectively killing our civilization. All empires decline from over-extension. Examples: Great Britain, Rome, France, Athens, Germany, Spain and others.
"Empires are diseases," said Thucydides. "The tyranny that the Athenian empire imposed on others, it finally imposed on itself. "The disease of empire," said Thucydides, "would finally kill Athenian democracy. And the diseases of empire, these are mirrored in the anarchic violence of these groups, but one that locks us in a kind of frightening death spiral."
As Pulitzer Prize winning journalist Chris Hedges said, "I despair that we as a country have become a monster that we are attempting to fight."
Nonetheless, the military industrial complex in America wins out in every battle against those who promote peace. Lyndon Baines Johnson, Richard Nixon, George Bush I, and George Bush II started wars that did nothing but bring massive deaths and casualties to other human beings and Americans. They accomplished nothing whatsoever for freedom or human life.
Goering at the Nuremberg Trials said, "Naturally the common people don't want war: Neither in Russia, nor in England, nor for that matter in Germany. That is understood. But, after all, it is the leaders of the country who determine the policy, and it is always a simple matter to drag the people along, whether it is a democracy, or a fascist dictatorship, or a parliament, or a communist dictatorship. Voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked, and denounce the peacemakers for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same in any country."
Is any American looking at what our own government does to us every decade? What exactly are we fighting for in Iraq and Afghanistan? Answer: money, power, oil, and greed! None of those wars has anything to do with freedom or terror or rational thinking.
"Nothing is actually resolved, nothing concluded, and nothing to be celebrated in taking away life," said journalist David Swanson in "War is a Crime." "If we want something to celebrate here, we should celebrate the end of one of the pieces of war propaganda that has driven the past decade of brutality and death. Nothing makes for peace like ceasing to wage war. Our senseless wars in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iraq, and Libya must be ended. Keeping bin Laden alive and threatening, assisted in keeping the war machine churning its bloody way through cities and flesh for years. No wonder President Bush was not interested in tracking bin Laden down."
At what point will Americans sicken of perpetrating war on other countries, on millions of other people and the contamination of our world with bombs, poisons, anger, and revenge? How can we call it good when we killed over 100,000 and up to 200,000 Iraqis? Some experts say 1.4 million died. Over 2.5 million refugees in Iraq alone! We dropped depleted uranium bombs on their civilization to lay waste for decades, if not centuries. George Bush gave the "okay" of "Shock and Awe" to teach them a lesson with such nuclear contamination. Plus, our own kids that served there! How about the 2.0 million Vietnamese we killed in Vietnam in 10 years. How about the 100,000 or so in Korea?
How about the 175,000 documented suicides by U.S. combat troops after having left Vietnam? How about the projected 100,000 U.S. combat troop suicides projected from the Iraq and Afghanistan wars? What exactly was the point, purpose, and reason, Mr. Bush and now Mr. Obama? You are two very sick human beings to perpetuate THAT much human misery.
How can the American people be so easily duped, led over a cliff, and jingoistically convinced that they are the chosen ones to go about killing so many other people in self-righteous egoism? We suffered 3,100 people dying on 9/11. Those countries we attacked suffered millions of deaths. Incredible human misery, pain and suffering we caused! As to 9/11, we pissed off the wrong Islamic persons who weren't as docile as the Vietnamese.
As to Vietnam, it continued because American citizens stood by, said nothing, did nothing and remained silent. If not for the draft-able college kids in the 1960s, the "Silent Majority" would have given up its children just like the Korean War generation stood by to watch its kids die for nothing.
Look at Vietnam today. United! If we had left Korea alone, it would be one Korea today, too. Is it our business whether it is a dictatorship or democracy? No! We have no business trying to change the world to mirror ourselves. Once we leave Iraq and Afghanistan, do you think they will be successful democracies? That's a joke! Sharia Law will prevail as it has for 14 centuries! How completely stupid are we? Pretty stupid! By remaining in Iraq we make a difference like a hand plunged into a bucket of water. But when we withdraw our hand, the water returns to the same level and original demeanor. The same will happen in Iraq and Afghanistan.