The War of the Heads
Ain’t no time to wonder why.
Whoopee, we’re all gonna die.
- Country Joe McDonald
I like to call it The War of the Heads. ISIS beheads people one-on-one, up-close-and-personal on You Tube while the United States of America and its coalition of cautious or secret partners prefers “decapitation,” as in using powerful F16 bombs and drone rockets to whack off metaphoric heads.
It’s easy to work up a vengeful frenzy sitting on our couches watching the medieval slicing off of heads. Especially when it’s heads we recognize! It’s harder to get worked up about people we don’t know who die much more slow and horrible deaths buried in the buildings we obliterate in an instant. We are sometimes allowed to watch buildings go up in a fiery cloud on our TV screens. But not to worry, no one is doing You Tube videos of the man, woman or child buried in noxious dust and concrete, gasping for air as he or she slowly expires in agony. You have to be a local Arab or Muslim helping to drag the remains and pieces of humanity out of the building to feel the call to vengeance from these F16 and drone hits.
In a New York Times op-ed, Thomas Friedman goes deep and explains how President Obama’s challenge at this historic juncture is to make the Arab/Muslim world recognize it’s an abject failure as a culture. It must accept the need for a ruthless imperial killing campaign to destroy the psychopathic ISIS killers. Don't pause and consider that ISIS was directly spawned as a vengeance reaction to this kind of thinking and killing in the first place. No, keep thinking it's all because Arabs and Muslims are a backward civilization in need of cleansing. I imagine getting the Arab/Muslim world to go for Friedman's line should be easy -- about as easy as someone like me getting the Exceptionalist/Imperialist world to recognize its blunders and debacles.
Over at Fox, Bill O’Reilly was on a tear advocating the creation of a 25,000 member mercenary killing force to be led by US officers. An American Foreign Legion for the 21st Century. A well-paid, highly-trained, international killer-force immune to progressive US politics and capable of working around the Constitution. O’Reilly loves to defend the Constitution -- except when it's inconvenient. The point is to make killing bad guys easier. Then all you have to do is decide who the bad guys are, which is a simple matter as long as the secret meeting is limited to the right people.