Before the second Iraq war that toppled Saddam Hussein, I was sitting on the fence. Sitting on the fence as to whether it was an okay idea or not.
Now, it looks more and more like a bad idea to have started that war.
For many years, I have had a sneaking suspicion that this nation's fundamentalist "traditional values" folks have had a fascination with their "like kind" in other parts of the world. Our "Moral Majority" folks seem to be drawn to the affairs of similar folks in the Middle East. Our fundamentalists seem to have an interest in similar attitudes about family, religion and so forth in Islamic countries. Maybe they have some sort of respect for "bull headedness."
Trying to "fix" the Middle East is something that the US government has been involved in for years. To tweak it away from it's more extreme versions of fundamentalism; bring "democracy" there.
It doesn't seem to be working.
I hear that Saddam Hussein's brutal rule may now be replaced with a brutal Shiite theocracy.
We have played a role in bringing that on. It may be no better than Hussein. It could expand the influence of Iranian Shiite fundamentalists. Maybe we have helped to create another monster.
The "Christian Right," in USA, has entertained a fascination with trying to "fix" fundamentalist cultures in the middle east. The problems seem beyond our capability and each year high birth rates bring more and more angry young folks into the situation. Few are even discussing the "population" aspect of this situation. One can't expect fundamentalists to care about problems related to population. It's just not in their dogma, both here in the US, or abroad.
The problems just get bigger and bigger and eventually we could become overwhelmed.
Some say, "a fool is born each day." One can also say, "more terrorists are born each day."
We might be better off finding a way out of this growing quagmire.
One talk show host, I listen to, says "you can not occupy an Arab country." "It just doesn't work." He suggests withdrawing.
Also, to protect the USA, this talk show host suggests having a rapid deployment force that can still "take out" (so to speak) serious dangers if they arise in the world. Still being able to prevent weapons of mass destruction, or large terrorist camps, if they arise.
Of course, this means, for the most part, except for the possibility of a rapid deployment, we withdraw.
This could also mean a period of less stability in world oil supplies.
I think we are better off putting our efforts into making USA energy independent. We need to pay more attention to our domestic front. There are a lot of things that need improving in this society. We have enough of our own hang ups so we aren't in a very good position to try and solve all the world's problems.
We are like someone who can't swim trying to save someone who is drowning.
This may sound somewhat pessimistic, but here is a "light at the end of the tunnel" kind of thought. This war seems like another Vietnam. Remember what happened when we finally gave up on the Vietnam War?
There was a period of infighting between different factions of "Communism." Vietnam and Cambodia fought one another. Unfortunately, innocent people died, but after a while, the problems sorted themselves out. Vietnam seems to be at peace now.
Maybe we are just trying too hard to solve problems beyond our capabilities. There are a lot of things we need to do for our own country; like finding ways to more happiness with less consumption of world resources. Newer, "better" technologies, reinventing urban planning, alternative transportation.
Think of all the Americans who die each year in automobile accidents. Things can be better here.
If we pay more attention to our "home front," we might put ourselves in a better position to be a model to the world.