Friday, September 12, 2008

Warmonger McCain

I've made my objections to a McCain presidency fairly clear here but the issue of foreign policy and the deployment of American troops around the globe is to my mind one of the scarier prospects of a possible McCain administration. It's not just his legendarily hot temper or the flippant way he refers to military conflict or the neglect of the issue of taking care of our troops when they return from the battlefield in his speeches at the Republican National Convention a ways back; It's the descriptions we have received from those closest to him about his attitude when it comes to war and armed conflict.

As Barack Obama has said in the past, he himself does not rule out military intervention in many or all of the conflicts the United States may and will face in the coming years but he makes the point clear that he considers such intervention a last course of action to be employed only when all other diplomatic and economic pressures and procedures have been exhausted. According to those who know him however John McCain is said to have a proactive approach when it comes to conflict situations, with his default posture being one of intimidation and aggression rather than thoughtful and strategic diplomacy, and that prospect scares the shit out of me.

Now I'm not going to be joining the armed forces anytime soon (the closest I've ever come was applying to the United States Military Academy at West Point when I was 18) and if a modern-day draft is ever imposed I assume that I will be beyond the cut-off age when it happens. I'm not saying that I would never pick up a weapon to defend my country in a time of crises or war but I do not foresee a situation arising anytime in the near future where the armed forces will desperately need the services of a smug, sarcastic intellectual who would most likely be questioning several of the orders given to him if not the entire reason for the conflict in the first place. Again, not saying that I won't fight but just that there are surely many men better qualified for and more enthusiastic to be a part of a combat situation than myself.

Regardless, this does nothing to dampen my apprehension about how John McCain would approach the role of Commander-in-Chief in the 21st century. As we've already seen with his blustery attitude and comments regarding the recent skirmishes between Russia and Georgia in the South Ossetia region of Eastern Europe, McCain does seem to have a tendency to strike a decidedly aggressive posture which, were he to have the power to actually instigate any kind of conflict unilaterally, he seems more than willing to do with very little hesitancy or aforethought. That's a temperament better reserved for the 19th century, my friends, and one that we can ill-afford to have in charge of the most powerful fighting force ever arrayed on the face of this Earth:

On a lighter note, isn't it interesting how the music from Requiem For A Dream can make anything about a thousand times creepier and more depressing (excluding this entertaining re-cut movie trailer, of course).

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