One of the things that has always puzzled me about the left is that they assume wars are volitional, there is no reason at all behind them, and people just “decide” to go to war.
I used to think this silliness had started with the boomers and Vietnam, until someone gave me the collected, bound periodicals of World War I and I researched World War II, and nope, even then there were people treating war as a decision we could choose to engage in or not.
Sure, maybe WWI for America specifically (not for the rest of Europe) and maybe we should have stayed out of it (it seems odd for Europe to have lost most of a generation only to, 70 years later, give Germany what it wanted under another name. Never mind.)
But that was a rare situation, and it certainly didn’t apply to WWII, where the enemy, filled with ideological evangelism, wouldn’t be satisfied unless they took on the world. For the same reason, it doesn’t apply to the cold war or to the war started on 9/11, which some call the war on terror, thereby making as much sense as calling WWII the war on bombs.
Most of the time countries go to war for the following reasons:
1- their situation is unbearable. This might be because of subjection to neighbors, or in more modern eras because it’s the only way to collect on debts; escape debts; OR get access to markets.
I know this is the part that the left thinks is “just because” because none of their collective have ever understood how business works. Business, particularly for a country, can be the difference between starvation and prosperity for your people. What’s more, economics rules always apply — always — regardless of whether your country has free trade or not, internally. Because international politics doesn’t work by wishful thinking (nor does national but you can disguise it better.)
2- Disputed lands. This was most of the reason for wars in pre-modern times, even when the disputed lands were minuscule, and didn’t seem to matter. Again, the left views this as “just because” but it’s not, not really. Wait till point 4.
3 – To distract their people from the situation at home. This is actually a common reason for totalitarian regimes, from fascist to communist to wage war. It has the side benefit of bringing home consumer goods, which tend to fall off while a country is busily despoiling its own targeted citizens, be they Jews or Kulaks. You know, if you took all the money of the 1% and redistributed it, it would be very little person. And then it would be gone. And then you’d have to come up with another plan next month. This is why some nations go to war, but never, contrary to the lefty projection, constitutional republics.
4- To prevent people from attacking you. This is something else the lefties never fully understand, but it goes like this: If you appear weak other countries will attack you. Saying no country should attack another, is like trying to make one man responsible for #yesallmen or a woman responsible for #yesallwomen. There is nothing you can do that will make sure no country falls into the insanity of totalitarianism, and no country ever misbehaves. There will always be countries who need to do the dance in point 3, and if you look like an easy target, particularly if you’re fat and rich, they’re going to pounce on you. So, sometimes point 2 is needed simply to avoid the appearance of weakness. I.e. to prevent people from attacking you.
5- Because other countries are making noises like they want to attack you/bring you down/be a danger to your citizens.
Yesterday on TV I watched the circus of the usual demonstrators throwing a fit about the “travel ban anniversary.”
It’s …. cute.
If banning people from countries who have hated us for generations (hint, Great Satan is not a term of endearing) and whose compatriots have been caught trying to harm citizens of our country is forbidden, the only route left to us is to annihilate the country.
Yes, most people in that country/coming here are innocent. But many who come here are de facto enemy combatants. Is this a risk you wish to take with YOUR INNOCENT CIVILIANS for the sake of foreign nationals? Yes? Then don’t be surprised if after a few more attacks the answer pivots to “annihilation of the guilty with the innocent.” Or you can shut up and let enhanced scrutiny go through.
6- In response to being attacked. What we did after 9/11 was complicated by being attacked by non-state actors, but the threads leading back to supporters were there, sure enough, and beating up on those who attack your people is the most just of wars.
Unless you are a leftist, who thinks war is volitional — because so often their regimes are totalitarian and need it, perhaps? — and who therefore think there would be “peace” if people just decide not to fight.
Soft headed leftists, at least. And those who pretend to be soft headed, and who want you to stop fighting so they can take over. It’s not a coincidence that almost all the anti-nuke movements in the US were financed by the Soviet Union.
There is nothing we can do with these people. They’re not amenable to understanding or explanation. Laughing at them is the only possible response.
Except of course that they will do the same in private life. They use “war” or in this case interpersonal conflict as a distraction from their truly crappy results when they take over an industry, a field or an institution.
This is why the first thing that happens after a collectivist take over of a country, an industry, a company, is the cannibal feast of denunciations, finger pointing and attacks.
And here, as in the greater conflicts between nations, they can only be distracted from eating their own by finding someone else to eat, someone else to attack.
So, when you get tired of their pounding on you, and you dare make a peep in response, they turn from their fellows into total war against you. Holy war, you could say. They’re actually much like jihadists, believing paradise will come once they take over the world, and ignoring the fact they always fight among themselves and any place they take over is hell on Earth. (There is a post of mine going up at MGC in half an hour or so, speaking of.)
So, even at an individual level, war is not a choice. Even for those who would rather read, write and ignore the *ssholes, they won’t let us ignore them. They’ll come after us, our friends, our families, those to whom we have pledged loyalty.
And then we get off the desk chair (or on it, since it’s a war of words) and go to war. Because the only way to be left alone is to win, and the left is famous for leaving people nothing left to lose.
You go to war with the underwear you have on. And you fight to win, because there’s no other alternative: not because you want to; not because you enjoy it; not because it’s fun (it’s not.)
You go to war because there will be no peace till it’s won.
*Sentence for title gleefully stolen from Mark Alger, who is innocent of any association with me, save my reading him.