Politicians scare me. They often decide life and death without any risk to themselves whatsoever. There’s a habit, beginning in the later half of the 20th century of dragging us into conflicts around the world where we don’t belong and in some cases today, are not wanted.
The Korean War, where North Korean communist forces invaded the “democratic” South. that’s a war that has never ended. We’re in what’s diplomatically known as a cease fire with the North. Many don’t know that the u.S. lost some 53,000 troops in that war. It lasted some 3 years. Compare that to another debacle, Vietnam, lasting 10 years and 58,000 dead. In the end, the North Vietnamese strolled into Saigon, now Ho Chi Minh City, almost without a shot fired. Today we actually have diplomatic and trade relations with our former enemy.
There was the bombing in Lebanon, in 1983, killing 241 service members (220 Marines, 18 Navy sailors 3 Army) that were there for peace keeping. Two days after?
We went to, does anyone remember Grenada? We landed Army and Marines there supposedly at the behest of some politcos there as the country was undergoing a sort of revolution. Bottom line? Four day “war” 45 dead.
A year later, around Christmas as I recall, we invaded Panama. I rcall coming in one evening and seeing. president George H.W. Bush (aka “Bush 41”) on television to the American people announcing the invasion. the purpose was to arrest their president, General Manuel Noriega, for, get this, drug trafficking. What was the famous line by Claude Rains in Casablanca? That expedition only cost us 23 lives. Only. The Panamanians suffered more: 300 dead soldiers, 214 dead civilians. To arrest a drug dealer.
Desert Storm (Aug. 1990, Feb. 1991), a war of a coalition against Saddam Hussein and Iraq, who had the temerity to invade Kuwait, a major supplier of oil to the United States and other members of the coalition. We had to drive out those cannibals because buying the same oil from Saddam was different that buying it from the Emir of Kuwait. Right? That war led to 96 soldiers killed and 105 non-hostile deaths. “Non-hostile”deaths could be anything from an accident to friendly fire. Since then, the total of veteran deaths of that war has risen to 4,506. Some to what is known as “Gulf War Syndrome.
I haven’t yet touched the remainder of the 1990’s and of course, those since 2001, but I think I’ll save them for another post. what my point is here is that all of rhese wars were started by those who actually had no stake (other than maybe financial) in any of them but were ready to sacrifice others family members for nothing.