And that's just in Nigeria
! Christian and Muslim clashes over the Mohammed cartoons have left 150 dead. Now why in the world would they be rioting in Nigeria over cartoons printed in Denmark? Pretty crazy, huh? Well, it's a pretty crazy world - and we're crazy to be involved in it.
It's really time the U.S. stops getting involved in other countries. Let other countries take care of their own problems - there's little we can do except maybe screw things up worse.
And the mess in Iraq right now - what kind of people destroy a beautiful shrine like that. What madness (yes, of course I know about Monte Cassino
- that was a madness we had no choice but to join). Sure, it never would have happened if we hadn't invaded - but it's a madness we're ill equipped to deal with, and unlikely to improve. It's been about 3 years, and the overall situation just keeps getting worse. What makes anyone think we can improve things?
What about Israel? We don't need to be intimately involved with the situation there to ensure Israel's survival. Perhaps our involvement is needed to protect the Palestinians from Israel. But interjecting ourselves over there hasn't made anything any better, so I can't see how our involvement is needed.
North Korean nukes? Not really our problem, is it? Were North Korea to use their bomb, the country would cease to exist - and they know that. If they invaded South Korea, it would barely exist. Japan and China might feel uncomfortable with a nuclear North Korea - let them worry about it (although, to be fair, this isn't far from the administration's actual approach thus far).
Russia? Well, I think we have pretty much given up caring about what goes on there. The country's really in too much of a mess to amount to much of a threat even if so inclined, and as long as she keeps sending us her most valuable exports
, we've got no cause to complain.
After 9/11, Americans felt they had to start kicking bad-guy ass around the world. I know I certainly felt that way. But we've since seen the result of this aggressiveness, and it hasn't gone all that well. We were right to get rid of the Taliban - they attacked us, and it's important that we took it right to them. But even Afghanistan today is more or less a mess, having returned to a medieval economy of camel dung and opium. Elsewhere we've just pissed people off and at home we are divided.
Plus, we really can't afford
to be the world's watchdog. We experienced negative savings
in the 4Q 2005. Gas prices went soaring, and we just kept right on spending
. Meanwhile our trade deficit hit $725 billion. Our economy grows at a little over 3% a year, just enough to handle our annual population growth which is mostly driven by immigration from third world countries
Rather than trying to kill terrorists abroad, we need to concentrate on keeping them out of the country. Rather than trying to control drug production abroad, we need to concentrate on keeping drug dealers out. Both these require very strict immigration controls - but that's all they really require. I don't think international relations are a lot different than everyday interactions. People don't resent neighbors who keep to themselves and don't invite others over to their home - they resent neighbors who are constantly nosing around and inviting themselves
over to others' homes. Yeah, it's nice to live in neighborhood where you don't have to lock your doors and live behind fences, but we don't live in that kind of neighborhood.
While Iraq and Afghanistan have exposed our weakness - i.e., we really can't control a foreign country very well by sending in our troops - we've also shown the world we can do an awful lot of damage by sending in our troops - and that the American people can handle casualties. Not to mention a huge fleet of B-52's, B-1's, cruise missiles, etc. ready to go anywhere, anytime. We have nothing to fear from any other country, militarily - at least not for now, and not unless we continue to squander what we have.