Often at home, we'd look at what's going on in the world, the sad state of affairs, when people act bad, and the lack of leadership, and my dad would say, "When there's no man, you be the man."
He was right!!!
These days, the question has morphed into, "Is he a man or a mouse?"
We are so chasing our tails out there.
Today after 4 1/2 years of civil war in Syria--hundreds of thousands dead, 14 million displaced, chemical weapons and barrel bombs dropped on civilians, crossed red lines and empty vows of "No boots on the ground"--and now we sending up to 50 special forces as a token force to "advise and assist" in Syria after the recent $500 million military training program for "4 or 5" moderate rebels in Iraq was a total bust!
Of course, we're going to Syria not to actually engage the enemy, but more to dare Russia whose deployed there with planes, tanks, ships, artillery, and Spetsnaz special forces to hit us.
Similarly, after Russia's incursion into Ukraine and annexation of Crimea, we conduct a training exercise with 3,000 troops in the Baltics and put together a NATO rapid reaction force in Europe and call it day, as if that will deter the "Great Bear."
Oh, and don't forget that we sent a single battle ship within 12 nautical miles of the South China Sea artificial islands--again, daring them to try something.
Well what if one of these days Russia or China actually took up the dare?
Already this week, Russia flew two fighter jets within a mile of the Ronald Reagan Aircraft Carrier--endangering the 6,000 personnel and all those valuable Navy assets. What did we do? We had 4 fighters escort them away--after what couldn't been a significant attack on our Navy.
If we did that to Russia, what do you think they would've done--our fighters would've been shot down so fast, we wouldn't have known what hit us--like when they did the Blitzkrieg into Ukraine and recently into Syria--we're taken off guard again and again.
Also recently, Russia maneuvered a military satellite between two of U.S. Intelsat satellites, 50 of which are used by our military for communications and drone missions. Moreover, Russian subs and ships are hovering around major global data cable lines posing a threat to the backbone of the Internet.
How about with Iran--we make a deal easing sanctions on them and releasing hundreds of billions of dollars--and what do they do? Conduct long-range ballistic missile test, convict a Washington Post reporter, arrest a U.S. business executive, and continue to threatens America and Israel.
When we are afraid and our enemies are not--when they act with impunity--we are more mouse than man.
We may get some cheese, but the mouse is dead rodent meat unless it gets with it.
This is not a game of cat and mouse--but the lives of hundreds of millions that hang in the geopolitical balance--and there is no mousey hole to hide in. ;-)
(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)