We’ve Seen This Movie and Spoiler Alert, IT SUCKED

No boyfriend jokes this time:

“In the event Syria imploded, for instance or in the event there was a threat of a chemical weapons cache falling into the hands of somebody else and it was clearly in the interest of our allies — all of us, the British, the French, and others. I don’t want to take off the table an option that might or might not be available to the President of the United States to secure our country,” Kerry told the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, debating whether to authorize President Barack Obama’s punitive strike in response to a reported chemical weapons attack by the Assad regime.

Asked by Sen. Bob Corker (R-TN), the ranking Republican on the committee, whether the secretary of state truly believed combat troops could be an option, Kerry walked the comment back by saying he was only “thinking out loud.”

“Let me be very clear now, because I do not want anything coming out of the hearing that leaves any door open to any possibility,” he said. “Let’s shut the door now as tight as we can. All I did was raise a hypothetical question about some possibility, and I am thinking out loud on how to protect America’s interests, but if you want to know if there is any — the answer is what ever prohibition clarifies it to Congress, there will not be American boots on the ground with respect to the civil war.”

And in the event that Godzilla AND Mothra showed up, Mr. Secretary, what would we do then?

First of all, it is not at all giving Kerry a pass to say fuck Congress for asking a thousand questions that were never asked of Rumsfeld, Powell and the rest of them ten years ago. Now they’re all concerned about what we’re ruling in and ruling out. It’s amazing what having a Democrat in the White House does to their skepticism.

It’s also amazing what it does to the general skepticism of the pundit class, which is so very, very reluctant to get us into a war that might never end. Which is really nice, for all the soldiers and civilians who are still alive whose lives we are actually treating with some measure of delicacy, and not so much for the ones we decided were expendable last decade because we had something to prove.

(News flash re: everything ever: The hippies aren’t yelling stuff at you because it’s fun for them to get the shit kicked out of them. They’re yelling because this stuff sucks and it should be hard, and if you’d listened during the last two wars you’d know that. Obama said, as a candidate, that he didn’t oppose all wars, and you know what, I think very few people oppose all wars. Even a lot of hippies don’t oppose all wars. I don’t want to start saying that because we manifestly fucked up Iraq and Afghanistan we never get to do anything else ever. I don’t know what’s going to happen next week, in Syria or anywhere else.)

Second of all, it is a pathological John Kerry thing, to entertain every hypothetical, especially when it’s a trap. It must drive his press officers goddamn insane. It drove me up a tree during the campaign. Of course if we have recorded video of Assad giving whoever took over for bin Laden nerve gas with a “USE ONLY IN THE EVENT OF AMERICA” label on it we’re going to send people in to fuck him up, but saying that into a live mic does nothing but panic everybody.

Third, it also does nothing to dispel anybody’s suspicions that this is a neverending suckhole of wrong that we need no part of, when we can’t even delineate where OUR line of “no more” is but have no problem pointing out theirs.


6 thoughts on “We’ve Seen This Movie and Spoiler Alert, IT SUCKED

  1. Just saw the video of Kerry taking Rand Paul to school over what Paul was saying about Syria.
    Well worth watching. Well justifies a boyfriend reference.

  2. “We’ve seen this movie before and it sucked” was how everyone greeted World War II.
    Not how they greeted World War I.
    Which war is more fondly remembered now?

  3. Gratuitous, your last paragraph. You definitely got me there. Not to mention so clearly pointing out the silent secret of how we idolize violence.

  4. “Very few people oppose all wars.” I haven’t seen a “just war” in my lifetime, and I strongly doubt I’ll see one in the next couple of decades. So I’ll probably be out there again (sigh) with my tiresome sign quoting Alexander Mack that “All War Is Sin.” Maybe I’ll spice it up with a Richard Gregg reference or two.
    And if you don’t know either one of those names, but you know all kinds of interesting details about the lives of Patton, Eisenhower, and even Schwartzkopf, considering asking yourself why that might be. And notice I didn’t even have to give you a first name for anyone in this paragraph.

  5. Well put. Love the line, “The hippies aren’t yelling stuff at you because it’s fun for them to get the shit kicked out of them…”
    I am very glad to see that a lot of deliberation is being put into this decision (especially in contrast to Cowboy Dubya declaring that if you ain’t for us, then you are part of the enemy as well as “dead or alive”).
    The problem of considering every possible event (including space aliens fighting Mothra in the skies overhead. Its possible.) is that a lot of the contingencies depend so heavily on what things are happening, as they are happening. Basically they are almost asking to predict all the moves of a chess game that will happen next month. Mr Kerry, would you move your queen to the middle of the board?
    Also your last sentence (combined with some posts a few days ago asking about why chemical weapons are that magic line). I’m thinking that at least part of it was that the public image of chem weapons trace back to WW I and were often blistering agents – but fully agree that being blown up isn’t a whole lot of fun either.
    WW I was brutal, endless, trench warfare. (Even though we forget more US Soldiers died of the flu epidemic than bullets). You hid in your trench until everyone jumped out of the trench and ran at the enemy in the next trench while hoping the bullets didn’t hit you. Extremely hard to get enough folks to the next trench to take it. And even if you did, you only gained a few yards till you did the same thing again to try to get the next trench.
    If the wind was in the right direction it was easy enough to release some gas on the enemy. Definitely beat jumping out of your trench. Gasses such as Mustard Gas will blister any exposed skin – including blistering the inside of your breathing passages.
    While the wounds were severe enough to cause death in a lot of people, it also left a lot of people disabled for life (such as by the scar tissue in the Bronchus and Lungs). In between, they had the agony of not knowing if they would live and also suffering from deep chemical burns both all over and all inside their bodies.
    Of course, the experience of dying from neurotoxic gasses can be agonizing. But the clinical course is a whole lot different from WW I chemical weapons.

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