By Alan Caruba
Listening to President Obama one might think that America doesn’t have a single enemy that could not be turned into a friend if only he was given the opportunity to just talk to them. He is a great believer in diplomacy even though diplomacy has rarely stopped a war if one party was determined to wage it. War doesn’t need the consent of both.
Perhaps because I was born just prior to the outbreak of World War II and grew up aware of terrible things happening in both Europe and Asia, followed by having an older brother who served during the Korean War, plus my own service in the U.S. Army, my attitude about wars has been shaped by a lifetime in which I cannot recall a minute when America wasn’t at war, engaged in a war, or threatened by a war.
To this day I have considerable antipathy for “peaceniks” and war protesters even though, as the ill-fated Vietnam War dragged on, I joined a march or two. If ever there was a wrong war in the wrong place, Vietnam was it. For those unfamiliar with it, it was essentially a civil war into which the U.S. inserted itself due to a “domino theory” that, if Vietnam fell to communism, all the other Asian nations would as well. At the time, the Cold War was still raging since the end of WWII and Chairman Mao was still in charge of China.
Just because you’re paranoid doesn’t mean someone isn’t plotting against you, so it’s always a good idea to take a very general survey of those nations who wish us ill.
After a slow start, the U.S. is contemplating putting North Korea back on its list of terror-sponsoring nations. I suspect many Americans with no memory of the Korean War during the 1950s dismiss North Korea’s nuclear weapons and missile capability. Not only will this thugocracy sell its WMDs to anyone, but the renewal of the Korean War is never more than 24 hours away. The U.S. is committed to intervene.
Iran, despite being on the other side of the globe, is working toward having its own nuclear weapons and missile delivery systems. As far as the Middle East is concerned, that’s a war just waiting to happen.
Americans seem to have forgotten that Saddam Hussein fought a war with Iran for eight years, settled for a stalemate, and then invaded Kuwait. If ever there was a good reason to fight a war to rid the region of this troublemaker, I cannot think of one. Now the problem has shifted to Pakistan, under attack from an enemy of its own making, the Taliban. Since Pakistan has nukes, it cannot be allowed to fall into the hands of fanatical Islamofascists.
Right next door India keeps a wary eye on Pakistan. Bordering Pakistan to the north is Afghanistan, a nation of tribes that, though occupied over and over again, has resisted all invaders for centuries. Just because 9/11 was planned there doesn’t mean the U.S. needs to maintain a military presence there. The prospect of an effective central government is quite distant despite the money, military manpower, and other efforts the U.S. is making.
So the enemies we can identify include any and all Muslims who support the view that Islam must rule the entire world. There are more than a billion of them.
Russia is no friend to the United States, but Russia is no friend to Europe or China either. Almost entirely dependent on the export of oil and natural gas, its fate rises and falls with the cost of a barrel or cubic foot of both. The fall of the Soviet government and the loss of its satellite nations in Eastern Europe have not significantly brought about a change of attitude in the Kremlin although much of the population would be more than happy to embrace the free market capitalism of the United States.
China is no friend either even though it is highly dependent on its ability to manufacture and export its goods to the United States. Our current economic woes worry the Chinese who own billions in U.S. treasury bills along with the fact that Americans aren’t buying as much of their stuff lately. China has perhaps the largest espionage effort regarding the U.S. of any other nation in the world.
Americans have been slow to respond to yet another enemy, Mexico. The U.S. has been literally invaded by Mexicans though they came looking for jobs and a better life. The result, however, has been enormous financial burdens on all aspects of our society from schools to hospitals to welfare and to crime. There are an estimated 12 million illegal Mexicans and others from south of the border and Harry Reid, the Senate Majority Leaders, wants to push through another amnesty bill.
The last amnesties only resulted in a greater rush to enter the U.S. Only a handful in public office will address the fact that the Mexican government has openly encouraged this invasion because the money sent home is a significant part of its economy. It is a major trading partner, but it looks to become totally controlled by the narco lords.
We have been slow to say or do anything about Venezuela, led by the dictator, Hugo Chavez. This likely has much to do with the oil that nation exports to the U.S. Chavez, however, is closely allied with Hezbollah which, in turn, is allied and controlled by Iran. Chavez has been buying up a lot of weapons of late and it has nothing to do with defense and everything to do with his bad intensions. Once a democracy, Venezuelans are now totally under the control of their government.
The U.S. just got around to arresting two former members of the State Department who had allegedly been spying for Cuba for thirty years. President Obama wants to lift restrictions on that dictatorship that have been in place for at least 50 years. Since the Soviet Union fell in the 1990s, Cuba has fallen on hard times, but it is still an enemy.
Africa is fairly dormant though Somalia has fallen to the Islamofascists. The U.S. has conspicuously done little to relieve the horrors in Darfur, inflicted by the Muslim Sudanese government. Overall, there is little likelihood that the U.S. will become embroiled in a war in Africa. It too is a significant source of oil.
If there is a common theme to our present threat levels, it is oil and, more precisely, the failure since the 1970s of the U.S. to access the abundant reserves of our own oil in the interior of the nation and from its offshore continental shelf. Since the Obama administration is hell bent on covering the U.S. with wind turbines and solar panels, we shall remain hostage to oil-producing nations.
The enemy that is only beginning to make himself known to Americans is President Barack Obama who has swiftly created an administration that ignores its many cabinet departments in favor of “czars” that have been ceded power over all elements of our nation. They rarely hold any press conferences, nor do they seem responsive to the inquiries of Congress. The only function of the cabinet secretaries appears to be to stand behind the President when he makes various announcements. No wonder he greeted Hugo Chavez with a big smile.
Taking control of automobile companies is unconstitutional. Giving bailouts to them is unconstitutional. Permitting the Federal Reserve to print money without regard to the inflationary impact this will have is reckless. Voting for a “stimulus” bill without reading or even debating it is reckless. Running up the national debt is reckless. Putting the value of the U.S. dollar in doubt is criminal negligence.
Trying to take over the nation’s health systems and to require all Americans to purchase health insurance flies in the face of free market capitalism and cedes control over the most intimate aspects of our lives to the government.
We now have a Homeland Security Department that identifies any American who disagrees with the Obama administration as an “extremist.” This includes people who oppose abortions, oppose illegal immigration, support the Second Amendment right to own and bear weapons, and veterans returning from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Terrorism is no longer part of its vocabulary, but “man-caused disasters” is.
If Americans don’t besiege and change Congress to reverse these assaults on the economy and the Constitution, this nation will fail and our liberties will be memories.