Saturday, October 28, 2006

New piece, old puzzle

Decurion has a post up: It's short enough to quote here in it's entirety.

One thing I will say about Mr. Hajji

He may be a murderous psychopathic terrorist who blows up little kids because he hasn't got the stones to take us on head-on, but. . .

There are days when I think I have more in common with him than I do with some civilians back home. At least he knows what he stands for, what he stands against, and what he will kill or die for.

Your average American wouldn't sacrifice anything for anything but the Almighty Dollar, and would gleefully ignore his God, his family, and his country in pursuit of the same.

There's a reason the surreality of Iraq seems more rational and real than the pure artificiality of the States.

Can't help but be reminded of Bill Whittle's Tribes and, further, Lt. Colonel Grossman and his 'sheep, wolf, sheepdog' paradigm.

Since World War II there has existed a disconnect in this country. I'm not altogether sure if someone actually formulated the idea, or if it just sort of happened. I suppose the Truman administration, fresh on the heels of WWII, felt it had to mask the idea of war in some manner when venturing in to Korea.

Is it really any wonder that Korea, and Viet Nam were lost here in CONUS? And that Iraq may be as well?

We've had no formal Declaration of WAR since World War II!

There's an old saw about idle hands being the devil's tools, and that's where we are now. Most civilians see absolutely no connection between GWOT and themselves. It's natural to grow more like the villagers in the 'Boy Who Cried Wolf'.

Sure there seems no formal enemy state to declare war on, but this is a trivial excuse to avoid the truth of the matter. Terrorism is a tactic, and yet our leaders talk about a War on Terror as if this provides some clarity, but it simply doesn't. Terrorism on its own is simply a law enforcement issue.

This all leads me to some truths. We attacked Iraq because it seemed the easiest target. It was a valid target, as was Afghanistan, but mainly because it seemed the easiest. It fit with the notion of never formally declaring war. If we don't formally declare war with don't need to consider the obvious way to grow the military to the size needed to do the job of attacking Syria and Iran as well. Decurion feels 'the draft' would be a mistake, but I don't - IF AND ONLY IF we declare war.

The issue is very complicated, for instance, could we field a military the size needed to do the job? Could we equip them? Could we provide the high tech gear they'd need. Can we produce the steel for armor. And so on. I frankly have my doubts.

So here's the conundrum at the root of any response to Decurion's post. If we want (or expect) the majority of our population to be involved they have to be asked. If they're asked and say yes - could we even do what it would take any more? The disconnect permeates the country and it's capabilities.

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