Superman is Sorry

Smash, over at The Indepundit has taken issue with something that I said in one of his comments.

He plays on it very well and responds in a truly satirical fashion.

What I said, was:

… no Human being should be subjected to all out war by [a] foreign country in order to gain [freedom].

*Some* Americans need to learn that the United States is not and need not be the “Superman” of the world.

LT. then went on and listed every instance in the last 150 years where the US has “saved.

What can I say but touché.

I’m sure the Cubans are forever grateful as they have enjoyed their new (?) found freedom since those Spaniards left. Sorry about that Bay of Pigs thing though…

Same goes for the Phillipines who had such a wonderful time with Marcos at the helm and US Bases on their shores that they finally ran Marcos out of the country themselves and then ran out the US with the last base closing in ’92.

And all the Latin American countries who have benefited by US military intervention, you know… like Panama. And don’t forget Nicaragua… who owes the defeat of the Sandinistas to the US’s support of [contra guerrillas]perpetrating civil war in El Salvador for 12 years and costing 75,000 lives… Corrected leftists for contras… sorry, wrote it too early this morning

I’m sure that the residents of Vietnam and their neighbours are forever grateful that you rid them of all that darn forest…. it was too thick anyway. Oh and I’ll pass along their thanks for the help with the cancer and deformities.

That reminds me. Have the residents of Hiroshima and Nagasaki thanked you lately?

Then there are the Afghanis… who, without the help of the US in the Jihad against the Soviet infidels would never have known the joys of the Taliban and thus would never have been able to be freed once more by their American saviours. I wonder if the CIA gave Bin Laden acting lessons as well… he sure loves the limelight.

And finally, our friends the Iraqis. Who have so recently been freed by the same people who supported their oppressor in his bloody, chemical weapon loving war against Iran. I’m sure at the time the common Iraqi was keenly aware that America had their best interest at heart. It must warm their heart and give them real hope when they see the old video (high and low bandwidth) of the man currently in charge of the foreign boots in their soil and the Interim Government shaking hands with their former leader.

Reagan’s November 26, 1983, National Security Decision Directive (NSDD 114), proves that he was really doing what was best for Iraqis:

“Because of the real and psychological impact of a curtailment in the flow of oil from the Persian Gulf on the international economic system, we must assure our readiness to deal promptly with actions aimed at disrupting that traffic

Ronnie must have just left out the part where they wanted freedom and liberty for the Iraqis… I’m sure the Iraqis understand and forgive his forgetfulness now.

So you see, LT was right, if it wasn’t for the US all these people wouldn’t have been freed… again… and again.

P.S.

The Crash Test Dummies said it best:

Superman never made any money

saving the world from Solomon Grundy

More Response:

So now that I’ve thoroughly annoyed or confused a few people (Here, here, here, here, here, and here). Intentionally, I admit… why don’t we dispose of the Sarcasm and Wit and instead focus on the facts as we both see them. The thing about “facts” is that they can be manipulated equally well on each side.

Alright so I think I’ve gotten enough peoples attention, maybe now we can start a real discussion on what I was really talking about. The underlying view that drives what I said above is shared, I believe, by millions of people around the world. That view is this:

Overt Conflict and war between nations has rarely, if ever in history, led to true “freedom” and societal change towards democracy.

The evolution from non-democratic, suppressed state to a truly progressive state where the government changes frequently and by the will of the people is invariably slow and fraut with peril.

Progress can be made over a very short period of time… like say the collapse of the Soviet Union, and then those gains are whittled away as we are currently seeing in Russia. This happens not because democracy or the need for “freedom” has failed, but rather because it takes so long for society to accept, digest and deal with such a fundamental change.

In every instance that I cited above the US’s claimed altruistic actions did not actually lead to an immediate switch from tyranny to democracy. In fact, it most of those situations the very opposite happened. And now still only a handful of those countries can be truly called “Free” and democratic.

I must go for now… but suffice to say that in almost every single case where war was brought onto a people to force regime or societal change, that change eventually failed. That does not mean that intervention is automatically wrong, but it is a very strong indicator that it does not work for the long term.

The most reliable method of societal change is for the people themselves to rebel and rise up against their oppressors. It worked for the French (a few times), it worked for America, and most recently Ukraine.

No matter how hard you try and how good your intentions might be, you simply cannot force freedom on a people that are not ready for it. Yes, they may want it… but even they cannot know when they, as a society, will be ready to accept it and embrace it. It’s far too organic a change to predict.

29 thoughts on “Superman is Sorry”

  1. So the Americans created the Taliban because they helped the Iraqis fight the Soviets. With this kind of perverse logic you must be a Chomskyite. Your descrition of the liberation as being an all out war is nonsense. Fewer innocent people have died in the last 21 months in Iraq than were being killed in the previous 25 years when Saddam and his Baath party waged war on Iraqis without so much as a peep from the likes of you.

    If your point is: Do nothing unless you can do it perfectly I suggest you close this site.

  2. Chris you are guilty of wanting to be friends with the US but at the same time blaming us for all the ills of the world and believing that we never do anything that turns out right. It’s hard to beat your logic but unfortunately, your revisionist history only goes back to the early 20th century. Prior to that you could busy yourself blaming Europe for the rape of all the continenents they colonizied and grew rich off of while carrying the “white man’s burden”. Those nations were driven out by oppressed people of color. Not a nice legacy, IMO.

    The USA is guilty of being powerful in this age while most other Western countries are not. So go ahead and hate us for our power along with Europe who, like Canada has no power to really affect outcomes expept the powers borne of military and political weakness – diplomacy, negotiation and best of all appeasement. The idea that Europe is going to “counter-balance” the American super power’s hegemon is an interesting experiment which I eagerly watch from my armchair.

    We used the atomic bomb to save many more lives than it actually took to end the war with Japan and a great many of those lives were Americans. We didn’t start that war and we are now vilified with using the lesser of two evils, atomic bombs or hand to hand combat throught the islands of Japan to end it.

    As, well, let’s not relive every 20th century battle today. Every war, as Chris points out, has human tragedy and suffering. I’m just glad that it was Stalin and Hitler who together killed at least 125,000,000 or more people and not the Canucks and the Yanks.

  3. Er, not to be picky or anything, but, well, you’re Canadian, and the last time I checked, “our friends the Iraqis” is not really a phrase you can state in good conscience. Remember, when Canada collectively had a chance to send some troops to help Iraq become a free country, well, they just weren’t that interested in freedom. Illegal war and all that.

    It must be cool to sit on the fence and pitch stones at the people actually doing the hard work in the field.

  4. I am also glad that you did not point out any of our worthless humanitarian aid. I will only point out the tsunami. Let see we sent more troops, and more aid, damn us. We give more money to the U.N. then all other countries combined, man we suck. I sure did not see much help coming from other nations to help us clean up after our hurricane season. May god, oh wait I can’t say that with out offending someone, please save our fat, greedy nation that we live in. Oh by the way I hope you have enough air freshener to cover the smell of our hippies that are coming your way.

  5. Chris

    A minor correction to your litany of American sins:

    The Sandinistas were the leftists in Nicaragua and supported by the freedom loving leftists Cubans. The Contras were revolutionaries to be sure but not leftists. Reagan, if nothing else, was pretty consistent in his opposition to the spread of communism and supported the Contras for that reason.

    He did play footsie a little with Iran at that time because mainly he was trying to get the Iranians to secure the release of those 7 hostages being held in Lebanon for SEVEN or EIGHT years, as I recall. Compared to Europe, the US’s support of Saddam in the 1980s was a drop in the bucket. All that military gear laying around Iraq leftover from that war has “made in the USSR” or “made in France, Germany” stamped on it…not made in the USofA.

    Anyway, you guys up north and over the Atlantic Ocean just keep your head in the sand. We’ll keep on saving everybody – oh, except maybe not Schroeder or Chirac should it come to that again. I don’t see that in the future at all.

    You better get some glasses…lol. Your hindsight is is a little fuzzy.

  6. You completely ignored the Soviet “intervention” which instigated almost every situation you mentioned. Why? After knowing what the KGB did to their own people, why does the former Soviet Union get a free pass from you?

  7. Go to hell you canandian fruit loop….you fucking ingrate…we own the fucking world…The UN has demonstarted how irrelevent it is along with the bureaucratic fucking up known as the EU…we know you support corruption, and oppression which is exactly what the UN and EU support…

  8. ummm, Chris, apologies for Mike’s crudeness. And we certainly do not own the world. An arrogant statement not to be admired for sure. Our power is finite and has monetary limitations
    certainly.

    Anyway, OT but remember the Seymour Hersh piece we discussed a couple of days ago? I found an interesting article on it at this site:

    http://www.jewishworldreview.com/

    Give it a read, it’s short.

    Again, Mike is out of line.

  9. Chris, I’m afraid I just don’t know what you’re talking about. Now isn’t that a coincidence.

  10. hey you! don’t you ever include the philippines in your blogs. you don’t know shit about my country!
    my advice to you is to keep quiet and stay away from the philippines. you’re embarrassing yourself too much already.

  11. …and I was thinking you were an American! So…yer a Canadian. It actually explains alot. While I know that Canadians have served well with our American soldiers in the past I, like other Americans, am rather disappointed in the French Bow your government gave to the people of Iraq.

    Smash is doing a great job of rebutting your points so I won’t go there except to say that a day is coming when Canada will have to choose…Freedom or Tyranny. All nations get there eventually and it’s a personal decision made by individuals not the government. We made that decision in 1776…and reaffirmed it last week.

    Freedom is the right of every living human given to them by a merciful God. IMO, folks that sit idly by shouting “DIPLOMACY” and “PEACE IN OUR TIME” while innocents are slaughtered are as guilty of those deaths as the barbarians. America got lazy after Vietnam…lazy and scared. While we licked our wounds for 30 years Evil people took over countries…hell…entire regions and now we are faced with living with it or dealing with it. I say we deal with it…forcefully and with malice.

    I’m proud of your right to say the things you say and will defend to my death your right, given to you by God, to say them. However, I believe you are wrong….dreadfully wrong. If your ideas were allowed to be implemented millions would die needless deaths. Every soldier friend of mine would agree that it is far better to die for Freedom than to die knowing we did NOTHING for Freedom.

  12. I see that you have now posted an update that includes a link to my post. It wasn’t up there earlier, so I deleted your trackback. Feel free to re-ping if you want.

    I don’t agree with much of your update, by the way. Doesn’t “It worked for the French (a few times)” indicate that the suggested route didn’t always work out, either?

    And I don’t think that the examples you gave really equate with places like North Korea, Saddam’s Iraq, or Afghanistan. As bad as we like to think King George III or the French monarchs were, as dictators they’re relatively benign. You can be a Martin Luther King, Jr. or a Gandhi in a tyrannical America or Britain. It’s not so easy under the thumb of the Baathists or the Taliban.

  13. ‘Overt Conflict and war between nations has rarely, if ever in history, led to true “freedom” and societal change towards democracy.’

    WWII. Germany. Japan.

    Oh, and scare quotes around “freedom” is a nice touch.

  14. …and I was thinking you were an American! So…yer a Canadian. It actually explains alot. While I know that Canadians have served well with our American soldiers in the past I, like other Americans, am rather disappointed in the French Bow your government gave to the people of Iraq.

    Smash is doing a great job of rebutting your points so I won’t go there except to say that a day is coming when Canada will have to choose…Freedom or Tyranny. All nations get there eventually and it’s a personal decision made by individuals not the government. We made that decision in 1776…and reaffirmed it last week.

    Freedom is the right of every living human given to them by a merciful God. IMO, folks that sit idly by shouting “DIPLOMACY” and “PEACE IN OUR TIME” while innocents are slaughtered are as guilty of those deaths as the barbarians. America got lazy after Vietnam…lazy and scared. While we licked our wounds for 30 years Evil people took over countries…hell…entire regions and now we are faced with living with it or dealing with it. I say we deal with it…forcefully and with malice.

    I’m proud of your right to say the things you say and will defend to my death your right, given to you by God, to say them. However, I believe you are wrong….dreadfully wrong. If your ideas were allowed to be implemented millions would die needless deaths. Every soldier friend of mine would agree that it is far better to die for Freedom than to die knowing we did NOTHING for Freedom.

  15. Chris, most of your update is empty rhetoric IMO. What a cliche it has become – the leftist assurance that you cannot “force” freedom on a people. They have to be “ready” to NOT be oppressed? I’m sorry, that’s a crock to me. I think you need to more prepared to explain that platitude as it sounds like NEWSPEAK to me. IF by that you mean that they must rebel and make themselves free, how on earth does a truly terrified populace like Soviet Russia, Afghanistan or Iraq manage that hurculean task? They must have the leadership, the means, the actual “freedom” (exchange of ideas) and much more than people who live in a totalitarian society can ever manage on their own. If any people wanted to oust Saddam, it was the Iraqia in 1991. The US thought that they would rise up and do it. Wrong! Didn’t happen. the rebels were buried in mass graves.

    The truth is as you’ve said many times over, the power the US has frightens you just as it does all the Euro like minded societies (that includes Canada) and you will talk until you are blue in the face that we can’t be right in Iraq, that our power is corrupting. When I say, it’s not over until it’s over and there quite a bit to do before it’s over. Your formula says that the tyranny of the Islamic fascists is insurmountable until and unless those oppressed find the means and the power to throw off the oppressors. The USSR crumbled but not from a revolution but from the day after day, year after year, decade after decade of pressure from the West and chiefly due to the indefatigable determination of the American people to not relent for even a moment in their opposition to communism.

    The only people that think like you do here in the USA are like-minded lefties who now, as a minority, run the Democratic Party.

  16. I agree with Smash’s post.

    However, most people confuse fighting Islamo-fascism with invading Iraq. I fail to see the connection. Iraq was a quasi-socialist-dictatorship who may or may not had links with Al-Qaeda (kinda like our “buddies” in Kuwait, do we have to invade them also?).

    My understanding is that the reason why all these liberals, anarchists, queers, and cbs watchin’ folk are upset with the war is because of the perceived shortsightedness of it. It was a given that we would kick ass in the ground phase. But what about afterwards? I don’t speak for all of them but it seems so ad hoc…

    It seems the guys on right are just cheerleaders and will continue cheerleading just because.

    But I will standby from any assessment of the war in Iraq until the election on Jan 30. That will be the ultimate litmus test. Let’s hope it goes smoothly. Otherwise I’ll be a real cynical armchair general.

  17. We are effecting changes in Saudi Arabia, ever since we shook off the democrat policy of never criticizing a nation’s right to abuse its own citizens.

  18. dman:

    I would love to hear your definition of “on your own”. How many veterans can you insult all at once? I’d also like to here why you think doing things “on your own” is so much better than doing things “with friends”?

    There is a term called “multilateralism” that we as Canadians are passionate about and that you, seem to view as a sign of weakness. We recognize our limitations but we are first in line to do as much as we can to help.

    We simply do not have the capacity, in dollars, hardware, or population, to carry out huge military operations ourselves. We never really have.

    There are only a handful of countries that can.

  19. In dman’s defense, your entire post is an insult to Americans and started with your comment left at LT SMASH. Pot…kettle. If you dish it out don’t be surprised when it’s dished back. 😉

  20. I’m confused. You say

    Overt Conflict and war between nations has rarely, if ever in history, led to true “freedom” and societal change towards democracy.

    and

    I must go for now… but suffice to say that in almost every single case where war was brought onto a people to force regime or societal change, that change eventually failed. That does not mean that intervention is automatically wrong, but it is a very strong indicator that it does not work for the long term.

    Ok, where to start. It seems you have a murky view of history. What about Germany, Japan, India, Poland, The Czech Republic and may other Eastern European countries. While the EE Bloc countries were arguably not freed by direct armed confrontation on their home soil, they were freed as a side effect of our cold war policy concerning the Soviet Union. I would also include the Ukraine in this.

    Suffice to say you need to obtain a better grasp on history before you make sweeping generalizations about the results or lack of results from war. There are so many other things that can be said here, but I’ll leave it at that.

    Have a good day.

    The Indepublican

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