It’s becoming a familiar story. More U.S. killings in the Middle East, followed by a terrorist attack on American soil, followed by more U.S. killings in the Middle East, which then engenders more terrorist blowback, followed by more U.S. killings in the Middle East.
As I have pointed out time and time again, as long as U.S. troops and the CIA are killing people in the Middle East, there will be terrorist retaliation against Americans, including right here in the United States. It’s just a fact of life, much like thunder follows lightning.
It’s been like that ever since the end of the Cold War, when the U.S. national-security establishment, having lost its longtime Cold War enemy, the Soviet Union, went into the Middle East with its foreign policy of interventionism, which included killing countless people, including hundreds of thousands of (innocent) children in Iraq and many people of Muslim faith.
The result was not difficult to predict, at least for anyone who looked upon what the Pentagon and the CIA were doing with a critical eye. When a government goes abroad and kills people, especially large numbers of (innocent) children, retaliation becomes a very distinct possibility.
The most recent example of this phenomenon is, of course, the bombings in New York City and New Jersey, which left 31 people injured. When the man who has been accused of the crime, 28-year-old Ahmad Khan Rahami, was shot and captured, police found a notebook on him, which, according to the New York Times, contained “screeds against the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.”
No surprise there. U.S. foreign interventionism in the Middle East has been the motivating factor for every act of anti-American terrorism since 1993, when terrorists first attacked the World Trade Center.
Of course, It doesn’t have to be that way. As I have long pointed out, there is another option: Bring all U.S. troops home from the Middle East immediately. Don’t let them kill one more person.
They have already killed enough people in Iraq, a country that never attacked the United States.
They have already killed enough people in Afghanistan, a country that never attacked the United States.
They have already killed enough people in Syria, a country that never attacked the United States.
They have already killed enough people in Libya, a country that has never attacked the United States.
And don’t forget: They killed all those people without the congressional declaration of war that the U.S. Constitution requires, which means that every single of those killings was illegal — a criminal act — under our form of constitutional government.
When is enough enough? How many people in the Middle East must the U.S. government kill before the American people say, “That’s it. No more. Bring them home now”?
Or another way to put it is, “How many Americans must be wounded or killed in anti-American terrorist blowback before the American people say, “That’s it. No more. Bring them home now”?
According to the Pew research organization, 52 percent of the American people now believe that the U.S. government should stop meddling in the problems of other countries and should leave it to those countries to figure out solutions to their problems. (See the extremely insightful op-ed by Texas A&M professor Elizabeth Cobbs entitled “For U.S. Foreign Policy, It’s Time to Look Again to the Founders “Great Rule,” which appeared in a recent issue of the Los Angeles Times.)
52% is a remarkable number. A large number of Americans are obviously getting the point.
Ordinarily, you would expect to see that statistic reflected in Congress, which consists of people who have been elected by the voters.
And yet you see very little support in Congress for bringing the troops home from the Middle East. The obsession continues to be with ISIS. If ISIS isn’t stopped, they say, it will take over Iraq, Syria, and the rest of the Middle East, which will cause dominoes all over the world to start falling, with the Muslim extremists finally conquering the United States, taking over the federal government, and running the IRS, Social Security, and the Interstate Highway System.
In other words, just like the national-security establishment used to say about the communists if U.S. troops and CIA operatives were ever to stop killing people in Vietnam during the Cold War.
Why is Congress so pro-interventionist? Because it’s controlled by the national-security branch of the federal government. It’s that simple. Many members of Congress have made themselves self-designated assets of the Pentagon, the CIA, and the NSA. Others are scared to death of losing military largess in their district and, consequently, of being accused of being ineffective congressmen. Most members of Congress are ever-ready to do whatever the Pentagon, CIA, and NSA expect them to do. They consider it an act of patriotism, much as journalists did who were serving as CIA assets during the era of Operation Mockingbird.
And one thing that is expected of the members of Congress is to continue supporting U.S. interventionism in the Middle East. Under no circumstances can the U.S. killing of people in the Middle East be permitted to stop.
The reason is simple: The national-security branch knows that if the troops were to be brought home today, anti-American terrorism would evaporate.
What would that mean? It would mean no more “war on terrorism.” After all, if there is no more anti-American terrorism, then why do we need a “war on terrorism”? Why do we need a PATRIOT Act, an assassination program, Gitmo, secret surveillance schemes, indefinite detention, and perpetual state of emergency?
Indeed, Americans might even begin asking a much more fundamental question: Why do we need a Cold War-era totalitarian-like apparatus known as the “national security establishment” or, as President Eisenhower referred to it, the “military-industrial complex,” or as Ike initially planned to call it, “the military-industrial-congressional complex”?
The Pentagon, CIA, and NSA know full well that crises, emergencies, and fear are absolutely necessary for them to retain their overwhelming power within the federal governmental structure. They know that foreign interventionism — whether in the Middle East or against Russia, China, or Korea — is an absolutely necessary component of retaining that power.
The interesting question that arises, of course, is: What happens if that 52 percent number continues rising, to say 60 or 70 percent? What happens if the vast majority of Americans say, “Enough is enough. Bring the troops home now. No more killing” and the Pentagon, CIA, and NSA say, “Nope. The troops are going to stay right where they are and continue killing people”? Then what?