Wednesday, November 23, 2005

Misreading America's Blunder

America's intelligence agencies - and America's leaders - don't have a monopoly on stupidity. Take this recent assessment by Asian analysts, which appears to be based on America's growing domestic opposition to Bush's bungled, grotesque misadventure in Iraq:

The overwhelming assessment by Asian officials, diplomats and analysts is that the U.S. military simply cannot defeat China. It has been an assessment relayed to U.S. government officials over the past few months by countries such as Australia, Japan and South Korea. This comes as President Bush wraps up a visit to Asia, in which he sought to strengthen U.S. ties with key allies in the region.

Most Asian officials have expressed their views privately. Tokyo Governor Shintaro Ishihara has gone public, warning that the United States would lose any war with China.

'In any case, if tension between the United States and China heightens, if each side pulls the trigger, though it may not be stretched to nuclear weapons, and the wider hostilities expand, I believe America cannot win as it has a civic society that must adhere to the value of respecting lives,' Mr. Ishihara said in an address to the Washington-based Center for Strategic and International Studies.

Mr. Ishihara said U.S. ground forces, with the exception of the Marines, are 'extremely incompetent' and would be unable to stem a Chinese conventional attack. Indeed, he asserted that China would not hesitate to use nuclear weapons against Asian and American cities - even at the risk of a massive U.S. retaliation.The governor said the U.S. military could not counter a wave of millions of Chinese soldiers prepared to die in any onslaught against U.S. forces. After 2,000 casualties, he said, the U.S. military would be forced to withdraw."


Officials acknowledge that Mr. Ishihara's views reflect the widespread skepticism of U.S. military capabilities in such countries as Australia, India, Japan, Singapore and South Korea. They said the U.S.-led war in Iraq has pointed to the American weakness in low-tech warfare.

"When we can't even control parts of Anbar, they get the message loud and clear," an official said, referring to the flashpoint province in western Iraq.Read the whole article at

Some in America will surely point to this and tell us that the growing opposition to the Iraq Occupation is responsible for our allies viewing us as weak. Those dumbasses will be just as misguided as Ishihara. War opposition doesn't weaken us -- the fact that our leaders gave us a war that Americans have to oppose is what weakens us. The fact that, for the first time in history, we're funding a war by borrowing money from China instead of taxing ourselves weakens us.

The Bush administration has long held that invading & occupying Iraq would send a message to the rest of the region and the world. Apparently it's sent the wrong message. What the analyst above fails to recognize is that while Americans detest the mounting casualties in Iraq just as we did in Vietnam, we are more than willing to sacrifice far, far more than 2000 of our men and women for a cause that's just. World War Two was such a cause. Afghanistan would have been such a cause if the President hadn't tricked us into prioritizing Iraq. The Iraq occupation is not that cause. Repelling an armed attack from China upon us - or our Asian allies - would be. If our leaders abandoned their obsession with disastrous tax giveaways to the rich that indebt us to China, and if we're forced to fight in defense of ourselves or our allies, we would have the support of the rest of the Western world and we'd have a good chance of success. Americans gradually and properly decide to cut our losses when we finally awaken to the fact that we're wrong. But when Americans are on the right side of history, there's no burden we wouldn't bear. The descendants of freed slaves, and survivors liberated from Nazi death camps can attest to that.


John Moorhead said...

I've seen your comic before, but now that it's on Yahoo, it has become one of my favorite.

I am conservative - a former Republican, now Libertarian and I agree with you 100%. China is scary with a capital "S"... The fact that we've all but given away our manufacturing base to Chinese labor, and now are financing a war, or two with debt to others is chilling. Will Bush pick another fight in Iran, given the current state of their Nuke program?

The one thing that is truly in short supply is common sense and Statesmanship. God, to have another JFK, Truman... hell... even Nixon... He was a crook, but at least there was some majesty...

Keep barking! It's time to dump more tea in the harbor!

John Moorhead
Lakeport, CA

Darrin Bell said...

I pity the sucker who becomes President next. They're going to spend their entire term trying to fix the damage Bush has done to the nation and to our image abroad, and there's no guarantee they'll be successful.

I'm with you -- I'm going to see what sort of tea I have in the cupboard and I'll meet everyone in Boston...

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