RANGER AGAINST WAR: Menage a Trois <

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Menage a Trois

--Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi,
ISIS leader
 Everything becomes and recurs eternally - escape is impossible!
Supposing we could judge value, what follows?
The idea of recurrence as a selective principle,
in the service of strength (and barbarism!!)
--F. Nietzche

(T)he power to cause pain is the only power that matters,
the power to kill and destroy,
because if you can't kill then you are always subject
to those who can, and nothing and no one
will ever save you 
--Ender's Game, Orson Scott Card 

Why the Egyptian, Arabic, Abyssinian, Choctaw?
Well, what tongue does the wind talk?
 What nationality is a storm?
What country do rains come from?
What color is lightning?
Where does thunder go when it dies?” 

 *   *   * 

You can't act if you don't know.
Acting without knowing takes you right off the cliff.
 --Something Wicked This Way Comes, 
Ray Bradbury 

President Barack Obama is expected to ask Congress tonight to authorize $500 billion to bolster the moderate militants fighting the Syrian government. These supposed moderates will then be used to fight the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS). At least that's the plan. 

But how does one gauge "moderation" in a civil war? Beyond the difficulty of deciding who to support, for the first time in United State's history, the nation is proposing a strategy based upon opposing both sides in a war.

For some reason, the U.S. is dedicated to the destruction of the Syrian dictator, Bashar al-Assad, while also opposing his major opponent, ISIS. This strategy ignores what happened the last three times the U.S. deposed dictators. The supposed unholy trinity of Libya, Iraq and Egypt are examples of this folly. Realpolitik would suggest the U.S. is better dealing with the devils it knows rather than those it does not. 

Why is the U.S. opposed to Syria, anyway? What threat originates there that would endanger the U.S. homeland? While ISIS is a dangerous organization, what proof exists beyond emotion and hyperbole that this group is a danger to the U.S.? 

The proposed new strategy lacks a clear objective (beyond smashing people and things from the sky), violating the Principles of War in a big way. The destruction of a government or a group is not a strategy, but at best, Phase #1 of a strategy. 

The key point is: what is the purpose and objective to destroying Syria and ISIS? The U.S. strategy lacks a definable end game.

Meanwhile, a half gallon of milk has risen 20% in one week here in Florida. People are now audibly questioning the steep jack in their grocery bill. Most often heard: "Maybe they don't want us to eat."
But they will manage to find money for flyboys to kill more Arabs; hopefully, they will kill the right ones. But there is the rub -- WHO are the right ones, and by whose metric?

Ranger is more consumed with food prices in his hometown than with the mistaken notion of stopping violence and hatred on the far side of the moon.  

Somewhere, General David Petraeus is asking with a wry smile, "So tell me: How does this end?"

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

I believe - and I say this reluctantly - that the opposition to Assad is because Israel opposes Assad because Assad is aligned with Iran and Hizbollah.

Also, there's is a childish idealism in the State Dept. that believes if you get rid of dictators and give people the vote, they will all end up being clones of Americans. Assad is a dictator according to these idealists.

I do think that IS is a threat to the US. They have made a number of promises to do ugly things to Americans in "the homeland". As they gain oil rich territory, they increase their wealth and, thus, their ability to pull off some horridly fantastic terrorist attack in the US.

IS is also a threat to Saudi Arabia and possibly other Gulf states. Their brand of Islam is more or less the approved brand in SA, Yemen, etc. It is not so difficult to envision the population joining up with IS.

SA is some kind of weird ally of ours.

At some point IS threatens to cause a spike in oil prices which causes the price of milk to go even higher (trucking, far machinery, etc.)

No easy answers in the short term. Long term: 1. Become energy independent 2. Get some realists in the state dept. 3. Improve our homeland security 4. build our home infrastructure and forget about the middle east. 5. If IS actually begins to attack the US or US interests, kill them all and let god sort them out (no ROE and the biggest baddest ordnance). Recall FDChief to active duty and let him unleash his inner Go All Roman. 6. Alter our politics....stop poking the Russian bear! Make an alliance to divvy up the IS caliphate. ditto Iran. Israel? Stop funding them until they decide to allow a Palestinian state. Otherwise let the vaunted IDF get its ass handed to it (again) by Hiz. Maybe they need that perspective. I believe it is possible for the Med. coastal countries/peoples to live in relative peace if Israel gives a little.


Thursday, September 11, 2014 at 10:23:00 AM GMT-5  
Blogger rangeragainstwar said...

A, another art to follow.
The isis will never have the capability to let it's ass cash the checks issued by their mouths. It's always capability and intent.
SA and Pak and Qatar are not friends. They are opportunists.
I'm embarrassed seeing photos of US bombers destroying isis pick up trucks ,as if this is important or meaningful.A truck being destroyed by a 80,000$ bomb delivered by a state of the art aircraft.
Yep, that's a smell of victory. Sorta like napalm in the morning.
Syria fought the ancient greeks, and they've been around a lot longer that the US.That's just a feeling that chews on me.
Stay tuned. I'm writing again.
jim hruska

Thursday, September 11, 2014 at 10:39:00 AM GMT-5  
Blogger rangeragainstwar said...

there are several reasons why milk and dairy is spiking,but that's Lisa's domain since she's the food editor.
all i can say is that those in minimum wage America are being squeezed pretty hard.Speaking of which-look at limes these days.

Thursday, September 11, 2014 at 10:43:00 AM GMT-5  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Jim, I don't mean to upset Lisa with any critical comments re; Israel. Just saying what I believe the evidence points. I could be wrong. The Palestinians may be intractable at this point.

Agreed the Syrians and Persians have been at this game since the beginning. No one over there is our friend. Certainly Turkey is showing it's true colors (kick them out of NATO?).

Pak interests me b/c they are nuclear and they have a substantial fundamentalist community.

We have too many alliances with countries and people that aren't in our best interest. These screwy alliances make me think of how WW1 jumped off. This time, though, could be w/ nukes.

What is the animosity towards Russia all of the sudden. What the hell is going at State?

I can't digest milk so not aware of what is happening there. Limes only in an occasional gin and tonic (but haven't had one of those all summer).

Lot's of people on welfare and under employed all over the place. However, when I go to the NE coast on business, I see lots of 6 fig. income families, new cars, fancy everything. Them's the core of the policy elites.

Staying tuned


Thursday, September 11, 2014 at 11:30:00 AM GMT-5  
Blogger Lisa said...

Dearest avedis,

I do so appreciate your manly patronization of this little lady and her possible need to grab for the smelling salts ;)

But Israel doesn't play into this piece, however, unless one is truly pulling back for the eagle-eye view, and noting that anti-Semitism reigns everywhere, and never bodes well for anyone.

The hatreds we are seeing played out now are tribal, and irrespective of any toothsome blood lust towards Isrealis, or the Big Satan.

Thursday, September 11, 2014 at 3:04:00 PM GMT-5  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I believe you folks are forgetting, the great american ISIS is a goat, to make us appear to do something good. By fighting them, and supplying them with monies to buy weapons, which McCain supports, so I am sure we have done that, we are fighting ourselfs, developing more space for our contractors to fill the void in. Like who would repair the pipelines, put out the gas fires, and who owns those companies?

Friday, September 12, 2014 at 11:06:00 AM GMT-5  

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