Thursday, October 09, 2014


Ludicrous is defined as “something so foolish or unreasonable or out of place as to be amusing; ridiculous.”

It is ludicrous to think that had the US intervened in a limited way in Syria a few years ago it would have made a difference.  One, compared to Assad and the Sunni extremists like Al Nusra there were few good guys to align with.  Two, we weren’t sure who those good guys were.

It is ludicrous to think that a few Americans combined with bombing will be enough to turn the tide in Iraq.  We were there for years, trained their army, spent billions of dollars and lost thousands of lives, and when we left they didn’t have the ability or the will to deal with their own problems.  Nothing we do now will change the basic equation: they need to own their situation.

It is ludicrous to think that Afghanistan is going to turn into a democratic country.  Those who say it is a mistake to pull out and if only we’d keep a presence there then everything would turn out OK are forgetting history and common sense.  Accept it, guys.  We can’t fix it.

It is ludicrous to think that if only America was a more aggressive leader on the world stage other countries would respect us more and therefore pay more attention to what we want.  If there is an overlap of self-interest then we can have a productive partnership.  If there isn’t, forget it.

I was in Sicily recently.  It is just as ludicrous to think that Antonio, the Mafioso down at the end of road, will change his localized world view and become a global citizen as it is to think that the United States of America is living in a world in which we can have our way.  That’s a ludicrous pipe dream, true maybe back in the middle of the 20th century, but a ludicrous fantasy today.


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