ON BEING OUTLIERS: WHAT COULD POSSIBLY GO RIGHT?

I am not pacifist, at least not in principle, though who knows? I’ve never killed anyone, nor am I likely to. Nonetheless, I have a serious issues with our “little wars” — and I sincerely hope this really IS a little war and not the start of a big one.


Wars don’t work.

They don’t solve any problems. When I lived in Israel, they were also under a brutal dictator. And before that, too. Syria has moved from brutal to brutal dictator with barely a pause in-between. We can bomb them. Send regiments. Whatever. It doesn’t change because somehow, that’s what the people want. It wouldn’t keep happening if there were a strong, national will for change.


Wars don’t fix problems.
Wars don’t make peace.
Wars don’t cure the internal socioeconomic issues of nations,
though we apparently believe they should.

It will not make them better. Cruel as it sounds, this is a country that has a bad attitude to the rest of the world — for a very long time. Does anyone really believe dropping bombs is going to make their situation better? That it will make Assad feel compelled to “have meaningful talks?” If such “talks” occurred, who thinks it would mean anything?

We have these little wars. Medium wars. Bigger wars. Again and again and again.

I keep hearing “this is a proportional response.” What does that mean?


“Mommy, Sally hit me,” says little Sarah.

And mom says: “How hard did she hit you? Did she draw blood? Do you need a hospital? Remember, sweetheart, you should only hit her back in direct proportion to how hard she whacked you. Never beat a friend harder or longer or using bigger bombs than he or she used on you. Okay, maybe a little bit bigger bomb because we want her to never forget that we can really make her hurt. PROPORTIONAL RESPONSE is our family standard.”

Mom pauses, looks around. “Here’s a  good sturdy stick. Go thump your friend. Just … not in the face.”


From the halls of Montezuma, to the shores of Tripoli. Guess where you might find “Tripoli?” We keep fighting the same battles. We never learn anything. Surely there is a better way to deal with other nations? Because this isn’t working. It didn’t work in the past, it will not work now. It will never work. Ever.

I know we think we are fixing the problem, putting bandages on the ills of the world. Someday we’ll recognize we can’t police the planet, especially since we seem to have quite enough trouble policing ourselves.

How many times will we fight the same wars yet believe we will get different results?

38 thoughts on “ON BEING OUTLIERS: WHAT COULD POSSIBLY GO RIGHT?

        • His father was a wretched excuse for a human. In a region with a fair number of terrible governments, Syria is special. NOT in a good way. There is an ugliness in their national character that seems to endure generation to generation.

          Liked by 1 person

          • There was a strong national will amongst the ‘rebels’ in Syria to change the government of Assad Jr – he set the army onto them and killed many as they protested. That was over 6 years ago. National will is not much against the National Guard who have tanks and jetfighers/helicopter gunships.

            When you have people like Assad, Kim Jong Un, Hitler and Trump in charge ( OK maybe not trump?) it’s not so easy to change things peacefully. – Or even if you have weapons and powerful friends it seems??

            love. (always)

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            • Syria has been a terrible place for a long time. They never seem to find a way to get rid of their “strong man” leaders — and that was long before the tanks and bombs and lord knows what else. This is a country that needs to find a center, make some decision about what kind of country they want to be …. and stop fighting amongst themselves. Maybe then they can fine a way As it is with everyone fighting everyone else, it’s pretty much hopeless. I wonder if there will BE people when and if this war is finished.

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              • I agree that it would be so much better if this ‘country’ (Indeed if every country) could find common ground amongst it’s peoples and decide how to get along without killing one another. That is the essence behind my blog and blogname!!

                A BIG part of the problem is this one country has multiple ethnic groups who all have a loooong history of strife and retaliation for past hurt. That and a truly despicable family that have clung to power through intimidation and cruelty. As is frequently the case in the Middle East – only the strongest savages survive for long. I believe this has been well documented in the Old Testament since at least the purported times of Moses.

                It can be very hard to change the habits of several hundred lifetimes 😦

                love.

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    • Yes indeed. There is no such thing as a “little war” in the middle east and especially not with Syria. In an area full of awful and sometimes monstrous countries, they are the worst. It’s the place you do NOT want to go (ever) on your next (or any) vacation.

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  1. I love that this is being discussed since the pattern is a major concern of mine. Now I do agree about the inevitability of wars but I question the factors that lead to it and the tendency for initiative; masked or otherwise.

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    • I think in this country, we go to war because we go to war because we have always done it that way. I’m not sure we’ve ever seriously considered an alternative to war and I suspect we won’t, at least not in my lifetime. We were born in war. The Monroe Doctrine was a worldwide declaration of war should some other country contravene our parameters. We are a warlike country and for some reason, think we have the right to be the world’s police. It seems to be part of our national self-image.

      Germany was the same way and it took two world wars to convince them there had to be another way. Hmm.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Oddly, since he did this, I’ve stopped caring very much about what he does. He got a lot of approval around the world and almost none from his own political base. I’m, personally, a Monroe Doctrine person in my own life and in terms of diplomacy which puts me with the likes of Rand Paul or whoever. Bear vomited and is acting like she feels poorly so much as I would like to go to bed, I’m going to wait to see if she finally drifts off into Bear dreamland. 😦 Dogs

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  2. To answer your question re: How many times…?

    The answer, my friend, is blowin’ in the wind….

    There is only ever ONE winner in any war…. the one who sells the weapons! (who are generally also those who make the most profit out of ‘needing’ a bigger ‘defence force’!!)

    How much do American taxpayers pay for ‘self’ defence now?

    love.

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