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"I think that we have a classification system in this country that is in fact not even beneficial to the intelligence agencies," [because it keeps information from being effectively shared] - John Perry Barlow, founder of the Electronic Frontier Foundation, on NPR's On Point with Tom Ashbrook show, December 16, 2010.
What he said. And, much, much more! Not only do I agree with what Mr. Barlow said, but I believe it is just plain wrong for anyone to now come forward and use terms like treason, or espionage in connection with this latest tempest in a teapot. In the first place, please do not try to tell me that this thing involved "Military Secrets," or even seriously classified information. Maybe if we were in a real war, and we were talking about weapons, and plans and things like that, you could persuade me of this weak idea. What we have here (Iraq, Afghanistan, all of that crappy area) is a war started for only one reason. Well, all right. Two reasons: first, W's stupidity and W's buddies' greed for oil. We got a bill of goods called Weapons of Mass Destruction, and allowed that airhead and his buddies to send in elements of our "all volunteer" military to piss away as much of our national budget as they could.
I mean, come on. If this was a real war, and if we really needed to get involved in a real war, we would have allies, without having to blackmail, beg, or bully others into acting like they were helping us. We for sure would not have had to go it alone, which you know damn well (if you've been paying attention) is what has happened. And, if it was a real war, then we might have real military secrets, and the need to worry about their discovery.
As I understand it, the furor over this Wikileaks thing has come about 'cause a lowly Army PFC, assigned to an 'Intelligence' Unit in Iraq, somehow had access to a couple of (as in two) classified videos and to hundreds of thousands of State Department Cables. None of this crap can remotely be thought of in the same context as a true military secret, because all they are in fact is information that is embarrassing to the idiots that were responsible for whatever snafus that have now been revealed. Now, I already understood that the term Military Intelligence is one of history's most obvious oxymorons. So, I gotta ask, right up front, how the hell was a misfit, high school dropout assigned to Intelligence duties? And, exactly what are his qualifications to be an Intelligence Analyst?
Beyond that, what is all the huhu, anyway? Has everyone forgotten Daniel Ellsberg? What has happened to our nation, and to us, that we have reached a point where we actually believe in all these so-called 'wars'? The War On Terrorism…..The War On Drugs………..The War On Poverty……..Take all of these together and they turn out to mean nothing more than a War on our ability to think for ourselves, a War on sanity, a War on human intelligence (as in the ability to learn or understand or to deal with new or trying situations).
We all know that the War on Drugs has been a total failure, and a humongous waste of time and money, not to mention lives. The War On Poverty, in my opinion, cannot be said to have been any sort of success, if we still have it (poverty) with us. As for the War on Terror, the Terrorists won that a long time ago. Remember when we were told that if we let them cause us to change anything about how we lead our daily lives, they will have won? Well, remember also when airplane travel was fun? Ain't much fun anymore, is it?
If we have all this sophisticated technology, this modern equipment, that (according to Hollywood) is so precise as to pinpoint the exact location of a given individual wherever he is on the planet, at any point in time, why is it that we never found Osama Bin Laden? Why is it that we could not overcome a bunch of ignorant, dirty, towel-headed camel jockies in Iraq, Afghanistan, or Pakistan? How is it that we consider Pakistan to be our "friend," for that matter? Why are we now guilty of having made the same mistake that the Soviets did (remember how we laughed at them?) regarding Afghanistan? You know, the Q word, their huge Viet Nam style screwup! Yes, that's right: Quagmire.
What business do we have over there? What business did we have when W sent our Troops into Iraq? WMD's? What WMD's? I suspect that we are all agreed that the real (you know, the real, verdad, true) reason behind our involvement in the messed up Middle East is OIL, right? So, how come we haven't yet gained total and complete access and control over all that frickin' oil? What do we have to show for all these years of stupidity over there?
Our own country is a shambles, with a crumbling infrastructure, an insurmountable National Debt, a currency that has lost too much of its value, a healthcare system that is a joke, rampant unemployment, greedy politicians of whatever 'party' totally ignoring the needs, nay, the demands of their electorate………..should I go on? Look at us. Americans of every stripe, every social strata, every differing philosophy sniping at one another, arguing with one another over what is right, and what is wrong. On the one hand, we have the Republicans resorting to that old W stratagem (the one that was so effective in starting us down this wrong path), fear. "You're a traitor if you question the Administration's decisions and actions," was the cry of the Bush Administration. Now, on the other hand, we have the Democrats, looking like a bunch of inept, incompetent wannabes, accomplishing nothing. And, largely due to the Republican's intransigence, the President faces constant criticism for not doing something, because he is pretty much powerless to do anything, since he has no support from any quarter.
I have an idea. Pretty simple, too. What do you say, we pull out of the Middle East, entirely? No U. S. presence in any of those 'stans, or 'rans or 'raqs or whatever. Warn all Americans to avoid travel to that part of the world, 'cause if they do, they're on their own. That's not enough. Add to that no foreign aid for anyone over there. No loans. No 'international commerce' of any kind with anyone over there. No American involvement whatsoever. Then, stand back and let them kill each other, 'cause that's what they're good at. If we're not there at all, they can't justify any jihad, any mass hatred for the "Infidel," right? Sooner or later, one of two things will happen. Either one of them will emerge victorious, or there will be none of them left anyway. Then, if y'all really, really, really want to, go on back in and suck up all the oil, um, uh, oo, ah………pick up the pieces.
No huhu. No Americans getting killed for nothing. No more billions and trillions of Dollars poured down the black hole that is the Middle East. No more hate poured upon us by that part of the world. Oh, yeah, let me really piss off some of you who might have been leaning towards agreeing with my great idea: there will be one exception to those parts of the Middle East that we abandon, and that is Israel. But, our involvement with that tiny nation will be limited to assisting them to protect themselves from any overlapping of the bloodshed that will engulf the Middle East.