Bombing / by kevin murray

First off, I will admit that I'm in general agreement with General Patton who believed that the object of war was to let "…the other poor dumb bastard die for his country," and I'm sympathetic in principle to the Rumsfeld Doctrine in which the thought is that a combination of superior high-technology information used strategically with advanced weapons systems and overwhelming air power, would best allow us to accomplish our military objectives without putting in harm's way an abundance of our ground troops and thereby would keep our fatalities and war injuries to a minimum while accomplishing the goal(s) at hand.


Having said this, one of the major problems with being so technically adept and so technically advanced, is that it becomes easier to not see the enemy as fellow human beings because the physical distance between us is so great in modern warfare.  Additionally, soldiers are indoctrinated to not see the enemy as anything other than targets, combatants, they, them, and of course there are plenty of racist terms to dehumanize the enemy combatants further.  Further, soldiers are instructed that they are the good guys and that they and they alone are fighting for right, justice, and the American way.  In the world of war, there isn't any room for nuance, it's often broken down into the basics of a kill or be killed scenario and soldiers on the ground directly experience the complete ramifications of deadly force and its effects and aftereffects while doing battle.


However, up high in the air the view of the enemy is far different and the higher you are the more surreal the ground, buildings, countryside, people (if you can even see them) appear.   (I've been to the top of skyscrapers and when you look down at the people and automobiles below, they don't seem real, even though you know that they are.)   The height that you are at, changes your perceptions, and things that you might not normally consider, are far easier to consider, and unless you or your country is held accountable for its actions, you will make decisions that appear valid on the surface but are far from it in reality.


Bombing is a shortcut.  Instead of boots on the ground, infantry, artillery, and other important armaments, why not make a surgical strike to decapitate or to effectively destroy your enemy's military-industrial complex.  The first problem is that it usually can't be meaningfully done without significant collateral damage, that is to say, without killing innocent civilians, destroying private property and taking out institutions that are necessary for the normal intercourse of human affairs.  Killing civilians should be a last recourse, especially by a country as military adept as we are, and that prides itself as being known as the land of the free.  It shouldn't be a crime to be born in a country that in some sort of way or manner is at 'war' with the United States, and you as a resident of that enemy country shouldn't have to pay with your limbs, your livelihood, your blood, your sanity, or your life.  America is better than that and should be held accountable for that.


Technology keeps getting better and better and sophisticated drones that put no American in danger makes it even easier for a military technician to push buttons, move military pieces, and to drop bombs on designated targets against certain countries, wreaking havoc and destroying lives.  Our greatest general and two-term President who knew war far better and more intimately than virtually anyone else alive today said in 1953: "Every gun that is made, every warship

launched, every rocket fired signifies, in the final sense, a theft from those who hunger and are not fed, those who are cold and are not clothed." President Eisenhower