Might does not make right, but right needs might.
My frienemies at the New York Times thought smart to pose as superior moral characters with two front pages editorials today on Syria, both entitled “Wrong On Syria”. They lambasted president Obama for doing what I told him to do (at last someone who listens to me!). What did I tell him to do? Bomb (the bad guys in) Syria. First I wanted to do in Assad the Plutocrat, but I admit that the Caliphate is an even juicier objective.
Once upon a time a Frankish-Mongol army entered Damascus (that was not long after the same characters, with Armenian and Georgian help, had destroyed the Caliphate in Baghdad). History does not just repeat itself, its very rich.
Civilization has to be defended. Obama has understood this. Annual spending, in constant dollars, by the Department of Energy and the Atomic Energy Commission on nuclear weapons research, development, testing and production:
[It’s all right that you be wrong, as long as I can flatten you.]
One does not want to make the Roman mistake of edifying what came to known as the “Limes”… The limit of the empire, a succession of walls, forts, garrisons, and legions, all around the Empire. Thus, when the bad guys broke through the limes, there was nothing to stop them: the interior of the Empire was essentially defenseless. Very rich, and very defenseless. When the Goths rampaged through Roman Asia, the Balkans, and Greece, in the middle of the Third Century, it took years to send a Roman army after them (they immediately fled).
On December 31, 406 CE, the Rhine froze so thoroughly and suddenly, that entire German nations galloped across. Among them, the Vandals. By then, thanks to an austerity program, the Roman army was actually the Frankish army. The Franks, who had beaten the Germans several times in years prior, in Bavaria, were taken by complete surprise, thanks to this freak weather event. After a torrent of German nations (reminiscent of the “torrent of German tanks” of May 1940) pierced through the Alsatian plain, there was nothing to stop them. The Vandals charged through Gaul, and then Spain. They soon invaded rich and completely defenseless Africa, which had known peace, the famed Pax Romana, for 5 centuries.
Italy, and Rome, never recovered from this.
History exists, to inform us. Syria and Mesopotamia used to be part of the Roman empire, so Obama can argue we are back home.
Even earlier in history, recent, 2014 genetic studies show that Mesopotamian, Fertile Crescent farming came to Europe under the form of the farmers who knew how to do it. This result was obtained by genetic analysis of Greeks… who are therefore, at least, partly, Iraqis.
So the West ought to relax: the Middle Earth is where it’s coming from. Russia is eleven time zones across, but Mesopotamia is just a time zone away from Paris and London. It’s the suburbs. Time to take care of them, by subjugating the awful systems of ideas that festered there (without naming it, of course, some of the critique of Obama at the UN could be viewed as pointed straight towards the Qur’an, which contains therein an evil system of thought, in no way less Satanic than the one in the Bible, as the Cathars no doubt noticed).
The New York Times editorials stupidly argued that Obama and Hollande had no right to bomb Iraq, and needed a UN Security Council authorization. That’s doubly dumb: first, common sense, human rights, the teaching of history, can override the UNSC. Although India just successfully sent a probe to Mars, the UN, and is predecessor, the SDN, were fundamentally French ideas which were finally implemented by the USA in 1944 (San Francisco, Bretton Woods).
Secondly, of course, Iraq is a sovereign nation. So if the legitimate government of Iraq wants France and the USA to bomb the bad guys on its territory, that is its sovereign prerogative. And that’s exactly what happened.
OK, the situation is extremely messy: there are bad guys all over. But that does not mean goodness ought to sit on its hands. That was the mistake made in 1936, when the rogue African army of general Franco attacked the Spanish Republic. France announced loudly she would intervene, and then backed-off, while the Nazis and Italian fascists got emboldened. In the end, Franco and his professional killers assassinated millions of Spaniards, and the Nazis and fascists got trained in all sorts of ways. Meanwhile, the Western democracies got used to the idea that it was better to do nothing.
This time, the show of force is a lesson to the world. Obama said at the UN that force was the only language the killers understood. Yes, right. And one of these killers is Putin. The Kremlin dictator stands warned: if he wants war too much, he will get it.
Using extreme violence is not the best outcome for superior morality, but it is sometimes the one and only optimal outcome, as far as civilization is concerned. This is such a case. The New York Times can pose all it wants, it’s as wrong as it was in 2003, justifying the invasion of Iraq.