Here we are at the tail end of a lovely Thanksgiving weekend waiting to see if our respond-and-bait tactics off the coast of Korea will have a warning effect or a war effect on the North. We have sent troops there to work in tandem with the forces of South Korea in what we are calling “joint naval exercises.”
I hope to the heavens that President Obama will be cautious enough so that this obvious display, in response to North Korea’s aggression, will not sorta, kinda, spill over into another war. America is broke, both financially and ideologically, and there is no more room left for another face-saving war.
Spin will not cut it. Fighting for our allies, like South Korea and cowardly and money-hungry China, is not an acceptable justification of the United States entering into yet another war. President Obama knows this: since our midterm elections, when the Democratic losses were interpreted to be a result of a lack of attention to our high jobless rate and other dire domestic economic problems, he has been directly engaged in facing those situations head-on. The national economy has been his number one issue.
Totally expected though, now that he has addressed our national dilemma, the opposition, along with reality, has stepped in and started to criticize him on our foreign policy. Beside the fact that the Presidency is a complicated job often faced with surprise elements, this spin by the President’s allies as well as his enemies is drenched in political vindictiveness. Even the liberal Huffington Post is more interested in raising the alarm on any and all of our current events rather than just reporting the facts. After all, anger and panic sell more than pragmatic analysis. I will never forget Huffington’s disgusting headlines as they were pulling out the Chilean miners. The headlines did NOT read “Miner’s Freed” or “Wonderful Reunions on Top” or “Finally, Freedom.” Instead, Huffington posted the headline “Wives and Mistresses Fight Up Top.”
I do not want this Korean episode to expand on our dime or on the backs of our soldiers. I cannot fathom that President Obama would incur such a strategy. At any rate, “they” (the good guys and the bad guys) are going to talk about him anyway. He is damned if he does and damned if he does not. Please let us see a President in action here who will use his heart and mind exactly the way we anticipated when we elected him. No more spin, no more “glorious” war to support our industrial-military complex and absolutely no more posturing ourselves into another war for the stupid sake of political capital over the well-being of our own citizens here at home.
Thomas L. Friedman got it right this morning in his Op-Ed, “Got to Get This Right”:
American needs to nation-build in her own back yard. In fact, some character-building might be in order also. No excuses accepted, not even our tendency to blame others for our own very apparent problems. We are the masters of our ship and it is high time that we turn our attention to that ship and refit her.