The Enemy of Manhattan is My Friend?

Randall Hoven
As you may know, we have a new head of US Central Command, in charge of our forces in Iraq and Afghanistan.  That also makes him General Petraeus's new boss.  His name is General James N. Mattis, USMC.  He made a bit of a name for himself when he said, "it's fun to shoot some people."  (OK so far, but read on.)

He recently gave an interview to, of all outlets, Scientific American (HT:  HotAir).  (I guess Rolling Stone was out of the question.)  I provide some of the General's tidbits from that interview.

"There are real enemies out there. I've dealt with them. There are people who really believe girls don't have the right to go to school."


"Sincere, intellectually vigorous, honest, patriotic Americans say that was the dumbest thing we ever did, to go to Iraq. And I will not disagree one bit."

"I would think that we can make common cause with people that would annihilate Manhattan if they had half a chance."

"I think that if we come out of [our current wars] with a more nuanced, more critical view of when we should commit our forces, I think that is helpful."

I'm just wondering, if we make common cause with people that would annihilate Manhattan, who are we making common cause against - "people who really believe girls don't have the right to go to school"?

For a guy who hopes we come out of this with "a more nuanced, more critical view of when we should commit our forces," I think a pretty good, but perhaps not nuanced enough, time would be when we find someone who would annihilate Manhattan, even if it means girls in other countries don't get to go to school just yet.

I thought the trick was to not impose our will on other nations, but to merely defend our own nation.  By that logic, we should not care so much about how a nation treats its women (that is an internal, cultural thing).  But if we have enemies who would annihilate Manhattan, using force to stop them is exactly self-defense.  If anything, we should be willing to make common cause with those who would not let girls go to school against those who would annihilate Manhattan.  (Really, is this too nuanced of a point?)

I am not getting good vibes about our war in Afghanistan, our war on terror, or our war on man-made disasters, or girls not allowed in school, or whatever our war is on.  At this point, I have no idea what we are doing in Afghanistan or how we'll know when we did it.
As you may know, we have a new head of US Central Command, in charge of our forces in Iraq and Afghanistan.  That also makes him General Petraeus's new boss.  His name is General James N. Mattis, USMC.  He made a bit of a name for himself when he said, "it's fun to shoot some people."  (OK so far, but read on.)

He recently gave an interview to, of all outlets, Scientific American (HT:  HotAir).  (I guess Rolling Stone was out of the question.)  I provide some of the General's tidbits from that interview.

"There are real enemies out there. I've dealt with them. There are people who really believe girls don't have the right to go to school."


"Sincere, intellectually vigorous, honest, patriotic Americans say that was the dumbest thing we ever did, to go to Iraq. And I will not disagree one bit."

"I would think that we can make common cause with people that would annihilate Manhattan if they had half a chance."

"I think that if we come out of [our current wars] with a more nuanced, more critical view of when we should commit our forces, I think that is helpful."

I'm just wondering, if we make common cause with people that would annihilate Manhattan, who are we making common cause against - "people who really believe girls don't have the right to go to school"?

For a guy who hopes we come out of this with "a more nuanced, more critical view of when we should commit our forces," I think a pretty good, but perhaps not nuanced enough, time would be when we find someone who would annihilate Manhattan, even if it means girls in other countries don't get to go to school just yet.

I thought the trick was to not impose our will on other nations, but to merely defend our own nation.  By that logic, we should not care so much about how a nation treats its women (that is an internal, cultural thing).  But if we have enemies who would annihilate Manhattan, using force to stop them is exactly self-defense.  If anything, we should be willing to make common cause with those who would not let girls go to school against those who would annihilate Manhattan.  (Really, is this too nuanced of a point?)

I am not getting good vibes about our war in Afghanistan, our war on terror, or our war on man-made disasters, or girls not allowed in school, or whatever our war is on.  At this point, I have no idea what we are doing in Afghanistan or how we'll know when we did it.