Thursday, August 19, 2010

The real war on 'terror' must begin.

The real war on 'terror' must begin - Focus - Al Jazeera English

Check out this article from Al Jazeera. I felt that it warranted coming out of retirement to comment on and pass along. ;)

Just think for a moment about what we could do to truly begin eliminating the root causes of terrorism. How quickly could we see the results of diverting resources from the wars on terror and drugs, which drain untold dollars each year and serve primarily to increase hatred of the US government, both within and abroad. If we truly want to increase global stability, freedom, and justice, we should be deploying armies of construction workers, teachers, farmers, ecologists, and medical personnel. These should be supported by designers and by cultural anthropologists who are competent in the local culture and language. I have no problem with sending an accompaniment of soldiers to provide security for relief workers, supplies, etc., but they should not take center stage (with the exception of medics, Navy SEABEEs, civil affairs folks, etc.).

The US government has pledged $76million to aid the 20 million flood victims in Pakistan, while spending $12billion per month on the"War on Terror"; it seems to me like this might be counterproductive. Spending 0.5% of the amount dedicated to fight in their backyard on trying to help them just might hurt their feelings. In my opinion it is also unconscionable to spend our resources in this way. In case people have missed them there are also serious problems with Haiti (just off the US coast) and within our own economy. The point is that there are many ways we could be making better use of these resources (both capital and human).

What if we as a nation actually supported something like the Peace Corps in the same way we support the Marine Corps (and the rest of the DoD, not to mention our huge intelligence apparatus). It's just an idea...