THE SHORT ROAD TO WAR
Before a war erupts, it is a thought in the minds of men. That thought is then sent into the world through words, threats, and ultimately commands. Then the horror begins. This world is armed with enough nuclear weapons to literally destroy the planet, and if that doesn’t scare you enough, consider this quote that has traveled down through the years (I was unable to find who authored it): “Man has never invented a weapon that he didn’t ultimately use.”
The man who occupies the White House has apparently thought about war for a while. During his campaign he questioned why we have nuclear weapons if we aren’t going to use them. He claimed to know more about military strength than generals who have been in the military half their lives. This man, who dodged the draft, whose knowledge of history is embarrassingly lacking, whose thoughts are a dark tangle of narcissistic musings, who plays the perpetual victim mired in paranoia, who lies incessantly, and who is incapable of keeping his mouth shut, is leading us into a war with North Korea. He began with “fire and fury” and is now onto “locked and loaded.” It’s like watching a Clint Eastwood wanna-be, except the consequences of Trump’s I’m-so-tough game could lead to annihilation.
There are differing theories on how stable Kim Jong-un is; his secrecy allows people to fill in the blanks. But we know this: Kim Jong-un likes bluster and bullying as much as Donald Trump does. He has told the North Korean people that they need to go without food and often electricity because money must be spent on weapons to defend the country from the United States. Donald Trump is now playing right into that scenario.
Words are never inconsequential, particularly when bandied about on the world stage between two unreliable bullies with nuclear weapons between them. It’s remarkable to me that Congress has been so silent this past past week. They clearly take their vacation time very seriously, but aren’t they supposed to still represent America, even in August?
It’s always fascinating to see what leaders do who are placed onto the world stage at the same time. My father and Gorbachev created a more peaceful relationship between America and Russia because, on that stage, in the spotlight of history, they relied on the better angels of their nature. Donald Trump and Kim Jong-un may never have become acquainted with their own better angels; they might not even know they exist. The sound the rest of us hear is the angels in Heaven weeping over the foolishness of men.