My sympathy and empathy for those in Paris is not without a certain degree of confusion. I must admit that a “War On” and a “War With” brings certain differences that must be explained and hopefully understood.
We have been engaged for several years in a “War On” drugs and also a “War On” obesity. Both seem to be sliding off the front pages as it would appear, by simple observation, that the battles are being lost. One could include in that group poverty, ignorance and even ethnic fatherhood.
A “War On” something allows the net to be cast far and wide. In addition it allows alliances, at first glance, to be at odds with the ultimate objective. Some would think Al Qaeda but I choose to think fast food munchies after an evening of a legal medically supervised pot party on Denver, Co.
The “War On” terror has all the components of free wheeling, go where you want, ally yourself with whomever and take any action that will play well with the local populis. In addition a “War On” removes any expectation that the other side will respond. After all “War On” has no real defined face until it is expedient to give it one. We even become surprised that “War On” has soldiers or would contemplate retaliation for years of drone warfare, deaths of innocents, the dislodgement of millions of refugees and continual regime changes.
It has never been a “War With” only “On” and that allows it to continue as long as a select group of beneficiaries see the benefit. We can continue to act shocked and appalled at worldwide events as periodically the other side, which does exist, emerges from the shadows to remind us that whether “With” or “On” it is still a strategy that has consequences.
An historical note to consider- Perhaps it was good that the “Colonies” had a “War With” England as opposed to a “War On” or perhaps it would still be going on today.
King George “Everyone who does not agree with me is a traitor and a scoundrel” including that terrorist Samuel Adams.
Samuel Adams “We have proclaimed to the world our determination to die for free men rather than to live slaves” upon hearing gunfire at the Battle of Lexington and the deaths of British soldiers “What a glorious morning for America”
Terror can assume many guises!
After Sept. 11, 2001 the “Patriot Act” was implemented. Individual freedom took a giant step backward as the “War On” terror ramped up. In addition the Military Industrial Complex, the Bankers and the select 1% saw opportunities that had lain dormant since the end of the Viet Nam War.
Now, after the attacks in Paris, President Francois Holland wants “to create a new version of ‘exceptional measures’, giving the government some emergency powers available under martial law.”
According to Le Monde the actions are “to provide an appropriate tool for taking exceptional measures for a certain period without going through the state of siege nor denying civil liberties.”
(Benjamin Franklin- “Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.”)
The “Patriot Act” was supposed to be short lived. Fifteen years later the amount of personal surveillance, suspension of constitutional rights and increased militarism, domestically and abroad, has grown exponentially.
Now the French are being asked to believe that the “State of Emergency” will last only three months.
When you are in a “War With” someone, certain actions taken by a President, although Constitutionally questionable, may be excused for the immediate goal of defeating the known enemy. Abraham Lincoln and Franklin D. Roosevelt were no strangers to the suspension of such things as a “Writ of Habeus Corpus” and the implementation of “Internment Camps” respectively. However since the “War With” ended for both Abe and FDR, so too did the usurption of power.
A “War On” however continues for as long as it is profitable to do so. In that context there is no end in sight for where we are now.
Periodically events like Paris will occur and give rise to debate as to the why, the who, and the, what now? People worldwide will commiserate, get angry, have moments of silence, become fearful but will always acquiesce to anything their leaders implement. Whether it’s taking off your shoes to get on an airplane or accepting Marshall Law by Executive Order the mass will always blindly follow in the “War On.”
(Herman Goering Nazi Leader- “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.” italics added)
The true danger does not lay in the caves in Pakistan, the streets of Baghdad, the landmarks in Paris or the subways in Manhattan. The true danger lies in a failed foreign policy of a “War On” and the continued blind acceptance of and the failed realization that In The End It’s All About Money!