The Risks Of Conflict - Everything comes with a price.
This would normally be my video blog post for the month. My studio is in the process of being completed and hopefully, my video blog posts will resume in December. Also, I will be traveling the week of Thanksgiving and the following week. Therefore, there will be no blog posts on Nov. 22nd, and 29th. Thank you.
Conflict. Now there's an interesting word because it refers to so many things. Domestically, personally, and globally. We all experience personal conflicts. In most cases, these conflicts are referring to choices we need to make. Do we do this, or do we do that? Domestic conflicts can range from anything socially, locally, or anything that occurs within our nation. These conflicts are more than an argument between friends or family members or even with your significant other. Then we have global conflicts. Politicians do not like to use the word war. War is a word that most people do not like to hear. Therefore, they will use terms such as peacekeeping force, police action, etc. However, when it comes to global conflict where risk or loss of life is concerned, they can color it any way they want. In the end, when bombs are dropped and gunfire is exchanged, it's war. Plain and simple.
WHY THE TERMINOLOGY?
Let me start by saying I am against war. However, I understand that, at times, our military presence is required to protect our citizens in other countries, our embassies, or our allies. In addition, our military presence is often required as a deterrent to war in a specific region. For years, the middle east has been the hot spot and probably will remain so for many years to come primarily because that area of the globe is the breeding grounds for terrorists.
However, what or how you feel is certainly your right, and this post is NOT intended to change anyone's mind. We all know in a perfect world, there would be no war or military conflicts. But, do we live in a perfect world? Of course, we don't. No one nation can stand alone against the rest of the world. This is why every nation has allies. Those countries that will stand by them to help protect their freedom or gain their freedom. It's not different than any one of us that has a friend that will defend us. It's just on a larger and certainly more dangerous and costly level.
The terminology is for political purposes. Do you remember the War Powers Resolution from your history class, also known as the War Powers Resolution of 1973? The intent is to check the U.S. President's power to commit the United States to an armed conflict without the consent of Congress. Meaning, Congress has to present the declaration of war. However, the President can send out troops anywhere under the auspices of a national emergency, a direct attack on the U.S. such as 911, its possessions, or its armed forces. The President must notify Congress within 48 hours of committing armed forces to military action and forbids earned forces from remaining for more than 60 days, with a further 30-day withdrawal period, without congressional authorization for the use of military force or a declaration of war by the United States. It's been alleged that the War Powers Resolution has been violated in the past. (courtesy of Wikipedia)
This is the reason for terminology. It's a way around the loopholes of political agreements. Therefore, it's all about control. However, the reality is, as I stated earlier. In my opinion, any military conflict involving military force or loss of life is a form of war.
There are many opinions as to what wars the United States was considered winning or losing. Everyone agrees we did not win the Vietnam war. Operation Desert Shield, Operation Desert Storm, Afganistan, and the Iraq war were protracted armed conflicts from 2003 to 2011. We've been in Afghanistan for 20 years. It is said that the last war the United States won was the Iraq war. But then, these are all opinions.
The real question was a war worth it? Again, that's a matter of opinion. As I stated earlier, there are some military obligations we have as a nation for various reasons. Afganistan started for us in 2001. Twenty years later, we're pulling out, and the country has now fallen back to where it was, to begin with, under the rule of terrorism. What did we gain in 20 years? I will repeat it. We all have our opinions that we are entitled to, so let's agree to respect one another.
As I said when I start this post. I am against war. I believe that intelligent people should be able to work out their differences. However, are we always dealing with intelligent people? Always keep in mind that regardless of beliefs, both sides always think they are right, and some will go to greater lengths to defend what they believe in. Such is the case with Afganistan. They have always been at civil war. Our presence only deterred it. It DID NOT resolve it. So, as much as I am against war, there are some things we must understand about it.
As the second part of my post title says, "Everything comes with a price." People say we were in Afganistan for so long. What about all the other bases we have throughout the world? The difference is, most do not have civil wars for decades in progress. Therefore, unless we have a tragic loss of a soldier due to a military exercise, there s never an exchange of gunfire. These are our allies. That's was never the case in Afganistan.
So we must ask ourselves, do we always do the right thing? However, this gets very complicated. If we are going to involve ourselves with military involvement, we should do what it takes to get the job done and be done with it. Seems pretty simple right? Not so much. Why is that? In these cases, you have other major superpowers supplying arms and troops to one side and us supplying the other. That risks further conflicts. My point is, there is no easy answer. But how this withdrawal was made was certainly not done the proper way. And now, it comes with a price. I fear this could be the start of a new wave of terrorism. But alas, you can't please everyone.
No point in belaboring an already difficult topic. What about other conflicts? Your personal conflicts? As compared to global conflicts, ours seem quite minuscule. In reality, they are, but our conflicts are equally important because they are personal to us, and we have to live with them each day. And yes, even those come with a price. No one ever promised you life would be easy. When you face conflicts in your life, all you need to remember is to look at them from all sides: the pros and the cons. Most importantly, and this is paramount. Know the consequences or the price, be it physically, emotionally, or financially, you will have to pay for whatever choice you make