By Manifesto Joe
The Islamo-fascists of ISIS, I have no doubt, are essentially a creation of Western, and particularly American, interference in the Middle East. I confess to being somewhat "neo-isolationist" to the extent that I regard anti-U.S. "blowback" as the major cause of our troubles in that region now. I am thoroughly sympathetic with President Obama's reluctance to put American "boots on the ground" in the Mideast, especially since most Americans (not me) got suckered into an expensive and needless war there back in 2003.
But the terrorism that we've seen in the past several days has underscored a point that can't be evaded any longer: These ISIS people are madmen who must be annihilated much the same way that German Nazis and their fascist allies had to be smashed during World War II.
War takes a terrible toll on its participants, and it should always be regarded as a last resort. My old man won five Bronze Stars in the Pacific Theater of World War II, and he was never wounded physically, but the toll it took on him psychologically was pretty obvious.
I was one of those obnoxious little kids in the early 1960s who kept asking, "What did you do in the war, Daddy?" The old man would give me his best Gary Cooper impersonation -- "Oh, not much, son."
I didn't realize until decades later, until after he'd died prematurely, that the war was an experience that he really didn't want to talk about. He did tell my mother about at least one incident -- a Japanese soldier who'd been hiding in the jungle came into his tent one night. The Japanese soldier had a bayonet. There was some hand-to-hand. Ultimately my old man took the bayonet away from the Japanese soldier and stabbed him with it.
That sort of experience leaves terrible scars on people, scars that they carry with them long after they come home. I still don't know what most of my Dad's Bronze Stars were for, and at this point I don't want to know.
Having seen what the effect on people can be, I am generally opposed to war. But I'm not a pacifist. Wars, like fistfights, on rare occasions become necessary.
In Germany the Nazis arguably were a direct product of the harshness of the Versailles Treaty. The Allies who came out on top in World War I largely wanted payback, and they made the German people suffer a lot for being on the losing side. Some of the German veterans -- one Adolf Hitler among them -- were unhappy with the terms of defeat. And when they rose again, they did so with an insanity seldom rivaled in human history.
Similarly, I fear that it was American meddling that was instrumental in creating the ISIS fanatics. But they are viciously enslaving those who live under their dominion, and they are destroying antiquities and art that can never be saved or duplicated. Then there is their terrorism. These are, to the point, crazy pieces of shit who will have to be utterly defeated. Until that happens, we won't have the luxury of debating their origins. We are at war. It's sometimes that simple.
Once the Nazis were beaten, the West could analyze what created them. Sadly, no lessons were learned from history that time, and they probably won't be this time. And we're probably going to have to ally the U.S. with some clearly unsavory characters, like Russia's President Puto -- yeah, I know, it's Putin. It wouldn't be the first time the U.S. has held its collective nose in wartime. The Soviets under Stalin were "allies" during World War II.
And I cringe to think of the corporate Republicans who will profit off this war, as they have off others. Too bad we can't send them to the front lines. They always seem so enthused about sending the children of the poor there.
But there are times when fighting simply becomes necessary. This looks like one of them.
Manifesto Joe Is An Underground Writer Living In Texas.