PoetsAgainstWar.net continues the tradition of socially engaged poetry and literature that stand as a voice against war, tyranny and oppression. War, tyranny, and oppression can come in many forms and can be fought in many ways. But if there is no will to fight and the capability to go with that will then there is no fight.
“Si vis pacem, para bell”
Which means, “Let him who desires peace be prepared for war”
History has taught this hard lesson time and time again. Pacifism is not an option but a plan to fail. There is an ancient Chinese proverb that states “It is better to keep your soldiers idle for a hundred years, than to find them absent for one day”. This has proven true for thousands of years. A quick look through history and time and time again the idealistic view of pacifism has caused nothing but death and destruction for millions denying the very peace that was sought.
Throughout the entire human existence one has always raised a fist, stone, sword, or gun to another. It cannot be denied that war is a part of human nature and to do so is a fool’s game. So the only way to obtain peace is to be a strong, compassionate, and moral nation.
Peace through strength is not a new concept to America. The idea of peace through strength was paraphrased in George Washington’s first state of the union address, as well as by Presidents Lincoln and Reagan.
Most wars start when a countries leadership or a dictator like Hitler believe they can start a conflict against a weaker neighbor and quickly win. Often there are even warning signs like small test or aggressive steps to make sure that no one is going to put up any real resistance (e.g. – rebuilding the Luftwaffe, occupying the Rhineland, annexing the Sudetenland, annexing Austria, invading Poland). Once able to confirm that no one is going to stop a conquest by force, it is time for an all-out attack.
The way to stop most wars is to make everyone believe that you have the means and the will to stop any aggression. Reagan won the cold war without firing a shot. He did this partly by launching the greatest arms race in history which eventually collapsed the Soviet Union. He saved millions of lives, created millions of jobs, and ensured peace for many years to come.
Clinton allowed about a half dozen attacks in the 90s without any reprisal, (e.g. – World Trade Center, USS Cole, etc.) We did not respond to these terrorist attacks on our national interests. As a result, Bin Laden would joke about how the USA was a “paper tiger” that did not have the stomach for war. It was believed that a few American losses would make us pack up and leave.
After the 9/11 attacks America once again showed its willingness to engage in a military response and has been free of attracts on American soil for ten years and counting. Also as a result Libya dropped its weapons of mass destruction program and even invited inspectors in to haul away it research equipment. Iraq who actually used weapons of mass destruction on Iran, its own people, and invaded two other countries is no longer threatening others around the world. Imagine how many lives would have been saved if the US had finished the war in 1991.
So it is important for America to remember our soldiers, keep our military strong, and be willing to go pound on some bully every now and then when forced to. For if we don’t then the bullies will grow in number and we will wake up one day to the very war we were trying to avoid.