As a nation we are 200+ years old and during that time we’ve had ten major wars. That works out to one major war every twenty years and that doesn’t even count the so-called “minor skirmishes”. Since our last official declared war in December of 1941, we’ve got into a rut of getting into wars but not declaring them as such. In the past seventy some years we’ve been in at least four major conflicts and dozens of minor “skirmishes” from invading places like Granada to overthrowing regimes in Panama and Iraq . . . and all without once making a declaration of war.
Compare that with the Swiss. The Swiss have an interesting army and approach to conflict. Five hundred years without a war. Pretty impressive. Also pretty lucky for them. Ever see that little Swiss Army knife they have to fight with? Not much of a weapon there. Corkscrews. Bottle openers. “Come on, buddy, let’s go. You get past me, the guy in back of me has got a spoon. Back off! I’ve got the toe clippers right here.”
You are probably realizing I don’t feel about war the way we are taught to feel about war as good little-minded Americans. Honestly, my mind does not work that way. I got this real moron thing I do, its called thinking and I am not always a good American because I like to form my own opinions! I don’t just roll over when I am told to. Sad to say most Americans just roll over on command. Not me.
More importantly, I am a follower of Jesus and his teachings on peace. I am convinced of trying different strategies other than getting out the biggest club I have and start hitting someone. For example, when some crazy nut gasses his own people, not to mention killing another 100,000 on the side by more conventional means, the world’s justice system needs to kick in majorly! Every civil nation needs to join together to seek justice and find ways to protect the innocent and bring those involved in such crimes against humanity to justice.
Maybe in the next week or two the United States will feel a moral imperative to enter into yet another skirmish. Fortunately, the president is seeking the will and wisdom of the people through congressional debate, input and approval. Whether we use our considerable force again or not, at the very least I believe we, along with all civilized nations, ought to flood the victims of such violence with humanitarian aid while at the same time continue to place imperative political, economic and moral pressure upon the current tyrants of evil in Syria and beyond.
And be careful if you disagree with me, I have an extra set of nail clippers.