Saturday, May 10, 2008

Invading Myanmar

Lefties never like using the military--unless there's no vital US interest at all. And then, the military is the Left's plaything.

Should we have invaded Iraq? Left says NO!
Should we invade Iran? Left says NO!
Should we invade North Korea? Left says NO!

So if there is a country we should invade, which is it? Why, Myanmar, of course!

The disaster in Burma presents the world with perhaps its most serious humanitarian crisis since the 2004 Asian tsunami. By most reliable estimates, close to 100,000 people are dead. Delays in delivering relief to the victims, the inaccessibility of the stricken areas and the poor state of Burma's infrastructure and health systems mean that number is sure to rise. With as many as 1 million people still at risk, it is conceivable that the death toll will, within days, approach that of the entire number of civilians killed in the genocide in Darfur.

So what is the world doing about it? Not much. The military regime that runs Burma initially signaled it would accept outside relief, but has imposed so many conditions on those who would actually deliver it that barely a trickle has made it through. Aid workers have been held at airports. UN food shipments have been seized. US naval ships packed with food and medicine idle in the Gulf of Thailand, waiting for an all-clear that may never come...

That's why it's time to consider a more serious option: invading Burma...

As the response to the 2004 tsunami proved, the world's capacity for mercy is limitless. But we still haven't figured out when to give war a chance.

The argument is not without merit. In philosophy class at West Point, one of the books we read was Just And Unjust Wars by leftie Michael Walzer. Walzer posited six conditions under which going to war could be considered "just", and preventing a humanitarian catastrophe was one of the conditions (as examples, being attacked or being under threat of imminent attack were two others). So I'm not arguing here about whether invading Myanmar would be just or not, as there exists a legitimate theory that it would be.

No, I'm questioning the thought processes of those on the Left--and TIME Magazine is certainly on the Left--who think that invading sovereign Myanmar is somehow more important or worthy than invading sovereign North Korea or sovereign Iran. Since Myanmar's rulers never threaten the US, you'd almost think our friends on the Left have an agenda or something.


Babbie said...

I've been saying it for almost a week now: Send in the Marines! Send them into the coastal areas that the military leaders can't even reach since the roads and bridges are out. Is it moral to stand by for tin-horn dictators while people die? Bush's popularity rate is at its lowest point ever. Why should he care if it goes lower? Probably it would rise as a result!

Anonymous said...

I'm a Democrat and I'd be willing to go fight in N.K. OR Myanmar, but not the other two you mentioned.

Anonymous said...

Maybe the agenda is the belief that forcing in aid would, I dont know, be a net benefit in that it would save lives. Those rascally liberals, with their nasty agendas!

Darren said...

Of course, neither North Korea nor Iran--or Iraq, back in Saddam's day--hid their desire for nuclear weapons. Stopping their acquisition could same many more lives than even the thousands to be saved in Burma.

Anonymous said...

> Maybe the agenda is the belief that forcing in aid would, I dont know, be a net benefit in that it would save lives.

Oh right. Enforced generosity, i.e. welfare, having proven to be such a net benefit domestically that it ought to be taken on the road.

The only item on the agenda of the lefties who think invading Myanmar would be just a peachy idea is the opportunity to strike a pose and the Times writer as much as admits that towards the end of the piece:

The cold truth is that states rarely undertake military action unless their national interests are at stake; and the world has yet to reach a consensus about when, and under what circumstances, coercive interventions in the name of averting humanitarian disasters are permissible.

Unknown said...

Note that the communist government of Burma has been slaughtering people there for years, and liberals couldn't have cared less. Suddenly they care now that a cyclone killed a comparatively insignificant number of people, no doubt due to some sort of climate change nonsense.

DADvocate said...

The fact of the matter is our military is spread thin already. We can't be the world police. Myanmar is tragedy as are Dufar and many other places around the globe. Want to make Myanmar a greater tragedy? Invade.

RedheadwithAttitude said...

Can we view this from a different angle? What if the disaster happened in Canada? The Canadian government has decided to limit foreign donations and is dealing with it in their own manner. We disapprove of the Canadian's relief efforts. Do we invade? Heck, no.

I may be the last isolationist left in the world. I still believe in national sovereignty. If Cuba want to only elect wackadoos named Castro, so be it (as long as we stayed armed and ready). If Zimbabwe won't allow Mugabe to step down in spite of election results, so be it. If Canada or Burma do not want to accept charitable offerings from the United States, why should we be upset?

The US military should be involved in protecting the US. This is something that the United Nations should be screwing up.

Eric W. said...

And now that China has their own natural disaster to deal with, Myanmar doesn't have much hope for international aid.