Posted by: Kevin | September 10, 2007

Rick Santorum is Pleased

Why, because a plurality of Americans are apparently stupid without any sense of proportion

“…a plurality of Americans believes the threat from Islamic fundamentalism is greater than either Soviet Communism in the 1960s or Nazism in the 1930s.”

I guess it’s time for a little history lesson America. 

The Soviet Union in the 60’s was the second most powerful country in the world.  They were perfectly happy to use insurgents and terrorists of their own and through those organizations could make an impact across the globe.  Backing that up was a strong industrial economy (and it was still pretty strong back then) and an armed force of 3-5 million men.   

If that wasn’t scary enough, the Soviet Union also had enough nukes to turn the United States into an irradiated glass parking lot.  In 1961, they detonated a 50-megaton nuclear device which remains the largest explosive device ever detonated by man.  In case you’re curious, 50-megatons is equal to all the explosives used in World War 2 multiplied by 10.

The Nazi’s of the 1930’s managed to conquer almost all of Europe and caused the death of roughly 60 million people all in the space of 10 years.  Their massive military overran France, Eastern Europe and almost took out the Soviet Union.  Their submarines prowled the Atlantic right up to America’s shore.  Their allies in Japan controlled roughly ½ the Pacific Ocean and had a larger fleet in the Pacific than we did BEFORE attacking Pearl Harbor. 

Compare that to our current set of adversaries.  Their “leader” Osama Bin Laden, is currently either dead or living in a cave somewhere.  They are backed only by the money of some rich Saudi princes.  The Saudi connection is a whole different post but suffice to say, if we really wanted to stop that flow of money, it would have been stopped by now.

Unlike our prior adversaries, the current crew is not united and often in conflict with itself.  A good example of this is the current “progress” in Iraq.  We’re helping Iraq’s homegrown insurgents and tribal leaders take out the foreign insurgents of Al Qaeda.  The civil war and bloodbath that people fear will follow our departure from Iraq would be between Sunni and Shiite Moslems. 

Even granting that Iran could conduct actual military operations, it’s important not to overstate what they can do.  Could they cause us a ton of problems in Iraq?  Absolutely.  Our army is stretched thin at the end of a vulnerable supply chain.  Can Iran project power around the world the way the Soviet Union or Nazi Germany could?  Not a snowball’s chance in hell. 

I don’t want to minimize the threat represented by terrorist organizations; they’ve certainly demonstrated a capability to inflict hurt upon us.  Let’s face it though, we had all the information we needed to prevent 9/11, we just had our heads up our ass.  They’re hurting us in Iraq right now but the idea that they would follow us home is ridiculous.  Every sign points to them spending their time killing each other once we leave.

So what’s the great threat to the American way that we’re supposed to be scared shitless over?   Our enemies lack common goals.  In many cases, they hate each other more than they hate us.  Our enemies lack the ability to hit us with anything but the crudest means available.  They aren’t using advanced military hardware to get to us.  They’re using cheap roadside bombs in Iraq, they’re sending out small groups of agents, isolated and poorly supported. 

So fuck Rick Santorum and his fear mongering.  And to anyone convinced that the current crop of enemies are the worst we’ve ever faced, fuck you too.  We as a nation have dealt with worse and we do ourselves a disservice by panicking and allowing irrational fear to dictate our choices. 


I’m including this video mostly because it’s been too long since I’ve referenced Monty Python

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