Madinat al-Muslimeen Islamic Message Board
|No justification whatsoever for spying on China|
|04/12/01 at 08:07:38|
|No justification whatsoever for spying on China|
By Charley Reese
Just what is our foreign policy in Asia? Inquiring minds would like to know. If it is to establish hegemony in the region, I'd like to know when Americans had a chance to vote on that policy.
Secretary of State Colin Powell said we would continue spy flights to "protect our national-security interests. And frankly to protect the national security interests of our friends in the region."
(There is no such thing as friendship between governments. George Washington knew that. How come modern politicians can't get that simple fact through their heads?)
Does Powell mean we are prepared to go to war to protect the independence of Korea? Of Japan? Of Taiwan? If he does, when were the American people ever asked if they wanted their sons or grandchildren to die 12,000 miles away to protect somebody else's country?
Now that the crew of our spy plane will be freed, we need to address the issue of just what our policy is in regard to China.
The answer to all these questions is that Americans are handed a foreign policy without so much as a by-your-leave. We are supposed, sheep-like, to accept the wisdom of the elders of the foreign-policy establishment and do nothing but obey.
To get down to the nut, I've no desire at all to see my children or grandchildren die in an Asian war for any reason whatsoever. It is not in the least bit necessary for the United States to establish hegemony in that region in order for our country to remain free and prosperous. The only war Americans should ever fight is in defense of this country and no other.
Unless somebody in Washington knows that China is planning a surprise attack on the United States, I see no justification whatsoever for spying in such an intrusive way. Collecting radio and microwave transmissions is going to give you data, 99 percent of which is routine. Why do it? Would we like Chinese surveillance aircraft flying off our coasts?
For some reason, people in Washington cannot get rid of their war mentality. That's probably because we have too many generals and admirals trying to justify their jobs.
Gen. Douglas MacArthur warned Americans never to get involved in an Asian land war (if you want to know why, check the population figures). We disregarded that advice when John F. Kennedy and Lyndon Johnson bogged us down in the Vietnam War. It was not a happy outcome.
Neither was the Korean War, when we discovered that if we were unwilling to use nukes, we couldn't win a war against Chinese troops. In that case, the old Confederate joke was true: We ran out of bullets before we ran out of Chinese.
Now there are even more Chinese, and the Chinese have enough nukes of their own to guarantee that we won't use ours in any future difficulty. As one of the Chinese generals said, he wasn't worried about American defense of Taiwan. "They think more of L.A. than they do of Taipei."
On the other hand, we have nothing to worry about with China. There aren't enough boats and planes in the whole world to ferry a Chinese army to America. Furthermore, the Chinese government has all it can do to keep control of its own country.
Therefore, it seems to me that the bottom line is our relationship with China boils down to trade and nothing else. If that is the case, then we should not allow the military to make foreign policy and play Cold War games when there is no Cold War and no imminent hot war. We need to force those in Washington to get rid of their imperial mind-sets and tend to our business instead of trying to run the world.
Nobody in history has succeeded in maintaining an empire, and we certainly won't. For all of our billions of defense dollars, I wouldn't want to throw our volunteer army into a land war with Chinese or North Korean infantry. I don't think we'd like the results. It wouldn't be the same as mugging a little country that doesn't have a pig's chance of surviving a barbecue.
If the American people want peace, they had better let the nabobs in Washington know it. Members of Congress, for example, have a bad habit of slapping sanctions on any country whose government does something they don't like -- or at least claim they don't like.
Where in the Constitution does it state that Congress has jurisdiction over the internal affairs of foreign countries? Who appointed these characters the world's moral and political policemen?
With the collapse of the Soviet Union, we had an opportunity to build a peace that might last for generations, but the politicians in Washington are doing everything in their power to mess it up. We should have disbanded the North Atlantic Treaty Organization; instead, we expanded it. We should have cemented relations with Russia; instead, we have undermined those Russians who were pro-West and strengthened those who are anti-West.
Reach Charley Reese at 407-420-5315 or firstname.lastname@example.org
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