Monday, January 05, 2015

That Thing About How Those Who Forget Their History are Doomed to Relive It? Confirmed.

Autumn Forge.  Familiar, No?

Not many - certainly not enough - of us have any vivid recollection of the Cold War that spanned the second half of the 20th century.  If we did, we wouldn't be so complacent about our "leaders" firing up Cold War II for no remotely legitimate cause so soon afterward.

No "legitimate cause"?  Yes, sorry to break it to you but Ukraine isn't worth it, not even close.  Let's be honest.  We like the neo-Ukrainian separatist apparatus just like Reagan adored the Contras.  Our affection for them is and will remain well shy of their political utility to us.  We're all for them, 100 per cent, to a carefully calculated point beyond which we have no interest in going.  It's all Kabuki theatre.

The worst thing any government can do today is to make Russia afraid of Western intervention.  They've endured that game as far back as Napoleon and there are Russians alive today who survived Hitler's adventures.  We discount that to irrelevance largely because we've never seen a Napoleon marching his troops down our streets.  The closest thing we ever dealt with was half-assed American soldiers in the War of 1812 and, even then, we relied on the Brits for most of the gunplay (Quebec deservedly excepted and venerated).

There seem to be two main groups in Canada these days: those who never experienced Cold War I and those who allowed 20-years to erase it from their consciousness.   I remember it.  I was a real Cold Warrior.  That was in the immediate post-Kennedy/Cuban Missile Crisis era when everybody on both sides seemed to be at hair-trigger setting.  I wanted to defend Canada and I'm sure there was no end of Ivans, Alexis, Vladimirs and Sashas on the other side who were in it for the very same reason, their Rodina.

Cold War, like the one we're dangerously intent on starting up today, is so insidious because of the way it entraps the civilian population.  You just set up an enemy of choice and, handled even somewhat competently, you can steer public opinion against a supposed threat of your own making.

I call what's happening today Cold War II is because I think it's not particularly descended from Cold War I.  Cold War I was waged with some sense of balance, "mutually assured destruction."  Cold War II didn't evolve to the point of mutually assured destruction, that's been its starting point.  Obviously strategic doctrine has mutated such that mutually assured destruction is no longer the miners' canary.  Today's leaders are willing to contemplate that very outcome in their foreign policy.  They're playing with your and your kids' and grandkids' lives.  Their lives are like comped chips on the table at Vegas. Easy come, easy go.

How does that make you feel?

Think on it a minute.  Do you really, really want to go back to this?

1 comment:

Unknown said...

Yes I remember "The Cuban Missile Crisis" the closest that "The Cold War" came to an all out Nuclear war. At grade school they trained us like seals to dive under our desks at the sound of an alarm that was October 1962. Then exactly one year and one month later they assembled us all in the gymnasium in November of 1963 to watch JFK get murdered. Sad times and Harper wants to drag us back there. But think he was a three year old in '62 and a four year old in '63. He was born in '59 I don't think he ever grew up and matured. Sad that he has the helm and the reins of our country.