No Appeasement: Where To Now?

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ap·pease·mentəˈpēzmənt/

əˈpēzmənt/

noun

1) the action or process of appeasing. (google)

2) a diplomatic policy of making political or material concessions to an enemy power in order to avoid conflict. (wiki)

3) word used by all hawks to bludgeon anyone who doesn’t take a hardline stance against aggression. (my definition)

Chamberlain’s appeasement of Hitler at Munich was, at the time, not as controversial as it was a year later as German tanks stormed across the Polish border. In 1938 Chamberlain and the Brits, in general, had no desire to fight a war with Germany to uphold what they increasingly saw as an abusive and unjust Treaty of Versailles. Plus, Hitler seemed a strong bullwark in the middle of Europe against Soviet aggression. Plus, Britain’s military was stretched thin and underfunded.

And so Chamberlain came to a gentleman’s agreement with Hitler: the Sudentland for peace.

Of course, Hitler did not stop with the Sudentland and the agreement at Munich has now become a symbol of the bankruptcy of the strategy of appeasement. Indeed, it’s haunted American president’s ever since: Truman in Korea; LBJ in Vietnam; Reagan and Gorby.

It is a haunting, though, make no mistake. Hitler on the brain. The fear of the domino effect.

If you give a mouse a cookie, he’s going to want a glass of milk, and then he’s going to take over your house, put a bullet in your brain, and bury you in the basement. So damn it, don’t give the mouse a cookie! Continue reading

Love The Soldiers, Hate The War

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Brick-Head was talking, and I was, for some reason, still listening. I did not really feel like telling him to leave partly because I assumed he would walk away at any moment and partly because I didn’t feel like getting into an argument with him. My hesitance at verbal sparring stemmed from the fact that, despite not knowing his real name or anything about him, I was pretty sure I had a good feeling as to what sort of person Brick-Head was. He was tall and burly, wearing a sweat-suit that only helped accentuate his impossibly spherical beer belly. He looked to be in his late forties or early fifties and likely spent a great deal of time over a grill with a beer in his hand. I got the impression that he could make it to the final round in a casting call for the new spokesman of Buffalo Wild Wings. I intend none of that to be invective, since there is almost nothing I love more in the world than beer and grilled meats. The problem is that I love my privacy and solitude almost as much, which was why we were on the wrong foot from the beginning.

Continue reading