Two questions just rose up out of the political ashes, making it imperative that I run to my “think” room and consult my crystal ball. Question One, are we, or are we not, going to experience the horrors of another World War, this time nuclear?
Question Two, if a nuclear war is inevitable, how do we know who our enemy is?
The answer to the first question has presumably already been answered by a recent Associated Press-Kyodo poll---how more accurate can you get than an AP-Kyodo poll?---which clearly shows that six out of 10 Americans believe that a nuclear war is likely. Not all countries believe this, of course, but they don’t know what we know about wars.
With Question One settled, let us now zero in on Question Two. In the event that WWIII should break out---and since we can’t help being in it--- maybe even starting it---who will our enemy be?
Every one of our wars has had a target-participant. One we could finger and fix our sights on. If we bother to declare war at all, we should have somebody in mind to declare it on.
In 1776 it was England; in 1812 it was also England; in 1865 it was the Confederacy; in 1898 it was Spain; in 1917 it was Germany; in 1942 it was Germany, Italy and Japan (the Axis Powers): in the 1960’s it was Korea; in the 1970’s it was Vietnam; in 2005 it is Iraq and Afghanistan.
We have always had a designated enemy. So it is quite natural to ask, in a nuclear war, who will we blast into oblivion?
Not Terrorists---they don’t have a country to blow up; they’re all over the world; besides, every time we find one, he blows himself up before we can get to him.
Not Arabs---killing another hundred thousand or so innocent men, women, and children doesn’t contribute much to any viable war effort.
Not Osama bin Laden---after three years we haven’t found him, so how are we going to nuke him? Besides, Bush fudged again and said this guy is no longer a priority target.
Not Japan---the U.S. and Japan have never had a closer relationship. Or so it would seem from our automobile sales.
Not China---that wouldn’t be very smart since we gave them all our nuclear secrets. Also, there are so many Chinese they would stomp hell out of us.
Not Mexico---thanks to Presidents Bush and Fox, if we started “eliminating” Mexicans, California would lose half its population. Not France---bomb the nation that gave us our Statue of Liberty? Are you nuts?
Not Russia---it wouldn’t make sense to start a “hot” war with the country we defeated in a “cold war.” A luke-warm war? Maybe.
Not Africa--- the instant we blow up any African nation the ACLU would come down on us like a swarm of tse tse flies.
Not England--- we’ve already kicked their butts twice. Furthermore, Tony Blair’s personal secretary is a distant cousin of my boss's wife's uncle.
Not Israel--- with so many international bankers being Jewish, we would be out of cash two days into a war.
Not Cuba--- Castro has outlasted us for 40 years. No reason to believe that starting World War III would shake him up.
Not the Arctic regions---nuclear explosions would melt the ice caps, causing massive flooding, and we would quick have to build another Ark. Moreover, who really wants to kill Eskimos?
No, my belief is that if we insist on starting another war, our designated target should be Ourselves. It would be The Quiet War, with no explosions of any kind whatsoever, including nuclear.
In conducting The Quiet War we would take stock of what we have done, and are doing, to this planet and the people on it. We would take seriously all dissents, all injustices, all tyrannical acts, and put them into a Court of Complaints for immediate review and remedial action.
We would kick the conniving, war-making neo-conservatives out of the Administration and the Pentagon, revamp our foreign policy, rethink our domestic agenda, restructure our whole approach to other nations in the world, and begin running America the way our founding fathers envisioned it should be run. Which, by the way, they put on paper in a document called the U.S. Constitution.
We would start minding our own business, respect other countries and cultures, and adhere to our own unique values, principles, and heritage. “Live and let live” would be our motto.
This way there would be no need to declare war on anybody, nor them on us, and the miseries of World War III might never come to pass. Is this an idea whose time has come? Apparently not yet.