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Vail Daily column: Banging pointless war drums, again

“When I take action, I’m not going to fire a $2 million missile at a $10 empty tent and hit a camel in the butt. It’s going to be decisive.”

These sadly prophetic words, said by President George W. Bush on September 24, 2001, led to the longest-running war in American history, responsible so far for the deaths of over 5,000 American men and women in the armed forces.

I say “so far” because the war is still ongoing and American men and women are still being killed throughout the Middle East.

Sure, not nearly as often anymore thanks to the draw-down of troops, but that is irrelevant to the point.

And I have no problem admitting I was all gung-ho at the time right alongside Bush, screaming for vengeance for the 9/11 attacks.

It was a reactionary response that I came to regret.

The more information I received the more I came to see the futility of a war against an ideology as opposed to a nation-state that attacks our shores or an embassy.

There was no clear objective and no clear strategy to reach, even if a purpose existed.

Sixteen years later, again with no clear objective, we spend up to $100 million tax dollars in one afternoon to “send a message,” yet the only message I saw was to Trump fans who so desperately want to shout, “’Merica, hell yeah!” while celebrating what a “kick-a–” leader we have as opposed to the wimpy Obama.

Yes, tough guys with concealed weapon permits that have never stepped a foot in the Middle East but are really good at killing bad guys on Xbox.

Anyway, is this a humanitarian issue to protect the “beautiful babies,” as Trump called them, leaving us with a moral imperative to act?

Depends upon who you ask, but understand that over 20,000 children under the age of five die each and every day, mainly from preventable diseases such a diarrhea, malaria, pneumonia, etc., but a few thousand of those perish daily from hunger and at the hands of dictators and other government officials, especially on the continent of Africa.

The Tutsis and Hutus would be happy to use chemical weapons if available, but instead they simply use machetes.

Again, children die each and every day, yet we do not bomb their killers’ mud huts in retaliation to send messages. Instead we ignore them due to their lack of strategic geography.

With Trump being the seventh consecutive American president to attack a country in the Middle East, I’m confused over this whole “America First” slogan.

America is the enemy of ISIS.

ISIS is the enemy of Syria.

Syria is the enemy of America. Ergo, by following the ancient proverb “the enemy of my enemy is my friend,” we are now friends with ISIS?

What the hell?

We have been bombing inside Syria for years, only up until now our efforts were directly against ISIS and Al Queda groups, not a Syrian government backed by Russia.

With Trump attempting to bomb his way to popularity, I suppose this means Syria is now on notice, along with North Korea and Nordstrom.

So we blew $100 million and hit a few camels in the butt, accomplishing nothing other than angering another enemy and setting the stage for the next pointless war involving more dead American soldiers.

These pointless attacks are everything but decisive.


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