Sunday, May 25, 2014

American Night

2,178 American soldiers have died in Afghanistan in the "War on Terror."

4,489 American soldiers have died in Iraq.

More than 51,000 American soldier have been wounded between the two wars.

US Army Specialist Bowe Bergdahl has been held as a prisoner of war in Afghanistan since June 30, 2009.  Taliban forces are demanding $1,000,000 and the release of 21 POWs from Guantanamo Bay prison in exchange for his release.

These are the exact words which Congress used in authorizing any President -- ANY President, from here on out -- to conduct a war with no specified enemies, no zone of operations, no identified enemy, and no clearcut goals or signs of victory:

That the President is authorized to use all necessary and appropriate force against those nations, organizations, or persons he determines planned, authorized, committed, or aided the terrorist attacks that occurred on September 11, 2001, or harbored such organizations or persons, in order to prevent any future acts of international terrorism against the United States by such nations, organizations or persons.

Using those words, two Presidents have set up military tribunals which authorize detention of US citizens, use drone strikes to kill nearly 200 children in Pakistan, extraordinary rendition to subject people to torture, the NSA eavesdropping.

The Authorization for the Use of Military Force has even been cited by President Obama as giving him the power to kill US citizens without a trial.

The Authorization does not end.  Last week, the House of Representatives voted against ending the authorization, and voted in particular not to end Guantanamo Bay or indefinite military detention.

Enjoy your cookouts today!


Robin said...

The American People have been, knowingly and unknowingly, trading liberty for protection for too long. Ben Franklin said, "They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety."

All of those Americans who fought for our independence also decried a large federal government and repeatedly warned the people not to trust them overly much.

And that is where we are: we have a large Federal government and the people have an (unrealistic) expectation that the Federal Government will always act in their best interests. The Federal Government does not care about our best interests. It is concerned with becoming bigger and more powerful. It will do whatever is necessary to ensure that happens.

I agree with your (unspoken) decree that the Federal government has overstepped and that it has no regard for our serviceman. In fact, I cannot argue with the facts. And on a different day, I would probably add some more disturbing things to contemplate, BUT...

Memorial Day is about remembering EVERYONE who died so that we could have liberty. It is NOT about applauding the decisions of politicos.

If we can't have a cookout and enjoy our freedom (while we still have it), then what is the point anyway?

Andrew Leon said...

I have nothing good to say.
Well, I'll say this:
I think it's less the "government" than it is those people now controlling the "government." Yes, I'm talking about the "1%" and the growing control they have over everything.

Briane Pagel said...

Properly responding would take more time than I have. I'll say this:

1. People make up the government. People want more power, and people are willing to give it to them.

2. We honor our war dead by standing up for the liberties they protected, and by remembering that new war dead are created every day. Mostly while we don't bother paying attention. When's the last time you saw Afghanistan on the news, other than Obama's secret visit?

Me, neither.

Liz A. said...

*shakes head*