08.29.13

Everything old is new again

Posted in Bombing Paupers, Crazy Weapons, Culture of Lickspittle at 3:56 pm by George Smith

All the nausea-provoking cliches of American war junk journalism have returned: “What would a military strike on [fill in the blank] look like?” [1]

Followed by numbing, intelligence-insulting descriptions of weapons platforms, maps with potential targets and quote from “experts” at US think tanks, all career dependent on continuous war. Tried to counter it with a column lampooning it, “Weapon of the Week,” at the Voice a decade ago. (Google.)

That did a damn fucking lot for my reputation.


There was also a big piece in the Post with said “experts” — alleged thinking of wise men — on whether or not a good bombing of Syria would be a “just war.” At this juncture it would not have occurred to me that any discussion of a remote-controlled strategic bombing campaign against any puny country, no matter how bad and which can barely defend itself, belongs on the same page as the word “just.”

No link, mostly because there’s nothing in it you can’t imagine.

Andrew Bacevich, the official retired military man voice-for-the- left, says it’s a bad idea, the same thing he said a decade ago about Iraq.

A Brookings flunky takes the opposite side of the coin, predictably.

A handful of religious men are nervous about the subject. They don’t much like talking about the US and the concept of “just war.”

One of them admits the US is not the sword of God, something that’s probably occurred to quite a lot of people. This is the only bit unusual as anything like it would usually be edited out.

And it’s mildly startling to see some people actually getting fidgety in print over discussions on the the US and prosecution of “just war.” Since they believe in a deity and an afterlife they are perhaps starting to think that eventually they’ll have to do some explaining and that “Praise the Lord and Pass the Ammunition” was always a pretty sickening tune.

You can say “God bless America” in the knee-jerk way of politicians and citizens but does he when you’re pushing the launch-cruise-missiles button? Or are you just feeling like you’re pushing your luck? Such teleological questions are real brain-twisters.


And, finally, at the end of the day, the Britishes showed some sense, many — a majority — thinking that dumping 200 cruise missiles and stealth bomber strikes into Syria at midnight will not likely make it a better place.

From the NYT:

“Prime Minister David Cameron said that Britain would not participate militarily in any strike against Syria after he lost a parliamentary vote by 13 … It was a stunning defeat for a government that had seemed days away from joining the United States and France in a short, punitive cruise-missile attack on the Syrian government …”

Which raises the question: “Why can’t we have nice things like ‘stunning defeats’ every now and then?”


[1.] War junk journalism, example provided by the Christian Science Monitor, a website that should not exist at all as its entire purpose is to furnish, as fast as possible, three or four paragraph blog posts on whatever is trending in search nationally:

[What] would a US attack look like?

First, it will probably start at night. US night-fighting capability is unsurpassed, and night attacks reduce the risk of civilian casualties, given that any civilian workers at Syrian military installations are likely to be home in bed. This could occur within days, perhaps as early as Thursday.

Second, the weapon of choice will almost certainly be precision-guided munitions. The US Navy has four destroyers within range of Syrian targets. Each Arleigh Burke-class destroyer has 90 vertical launchers for Tomahawk land attack cruise missiles and defensive missiles, according to a Syria attack plan produced by Christopher Harmer, senior naval analyst at the Institute for the Study of War. Depending on the mix of munitions loaded in these launchers, four ships should easily be able to hit Syrian targets with 180 Tomahawks.

US cruise missiles have a 1,000-mile range, meaning they can be launched hundreds of miles at sea. If they operate as intended, their accuracy carries them to within a few meters of their intended targets.

No link. That place sucks and so do those who work there.

The Bombing Paupers tab is, once again, officially open.

3 Comments

  1. Floormaster Squeeze said,

    August 30, 2013 at 5:07 am

    “Just War” theory is so anachronistic. It would be completely impossible for the U. S. to fight a just war. They reflexively violate proportionality, distinction (plenty of collateral damage just moving around let alone all the dead once things are done in anger), and necessity. ANY talk of “just war” is just lipstick on a pig.

    Your phrase on the professional class of the continual war dependents is right on. They might as well create Our Lady of Perpetual War and move on.

    The U. S. political leaders are true believers in militarism but some feel the need to showcase the “just war” principles they may actually adhere to (usually about all the bad the “bad guy” is up to).

  2. George Smith said,

    August 30, 2013 at 8:22 am

    Today’s fad in junk war journalism, more stories on whether or not “unilaterally” striking a puny country — no matter how bad — that can’t defend itself from overwhelming US military supremacy, is legal.

    http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-202_162-57600757/would-a-syria-strike-be-legal/

    http://about.bloomberglaw.com/legal-news/obama-striking-assad-risks-international-law-conflict/

    http://www.rferl.org/content/syria-intervention-legal-debate/25090615.html

    http://www.foreignaffairs.com/articles/139886/david-kaye/the-legal-consequences-of-illegal-wars

    You’ll remember David Kaye and the Iraq WMD inspector’s report. Nobody listened to him then, either.

    http://www.rollcall.com/news/obama_wont_give_legal_reasoning_for_syria_attack_yet-227277-1.html

    Everything’s lining up. All the idiot’s are present, just like the last time and every time. Ths US is not the sword of God and smiting the puny bad country at midnight with overwhelming force is definitely not legal in a rational work but this country is not rational and the cruise missiles are itching to go and must be used. Raytheon is already warming up the assembly line with refills.

  3. George Smith said,

    August 30, 2013 at 8:27 am

    The Raytheon stock ticker.

    http://www.google.com/finance?q=NYSE:RTN&sa=X&ei=6cYgUqPYOcj0iQK9oYGABQ&sqi=2&ved=0CCkQ2AE