In the halls of Congress and the Pentagon, it's business as usual, if your definition of "business" is the power and profits you get from constantly preparing for and prosecuting wars around the world.
If our celebrities who profit the most from America are unwilling to defend it the way Stewart and Williams did, perhaps that's not just a sign of societal rot. Perhaps it's a sign that our wars are simply not vital to us. And if that's the case, shouldn't we end them?
There is no way to reconcile these two immediate faces of America to millions of people across the world; the military and the Peace Corps will always serve their own distinctly different purposes and for many reasons it is better that it remain this way.
Military action in Syria could embroil the United States in civil wars from the Tigris to the Levant; U.S interests could also come under direct attack. A steely-eyed view of regional dynamics and contingency planning are critical to optimizing U.S. objectives.
Afghans have taken charge again of their own destiny. The American officers at the security meeting were witness to this change on the ground. Having not been asked to contribute to the discussion, they were silent observers to the intricate issue of Afghan inter-service coordination.
Will military strikes help ordinary Syrians or harm them? Will more violence deter the use of chemical weapons and other war crimes in Syria and elsewhere, or exacerbate the problem? Have all other possibilities been exhausted, or are there peaceful solutions that haven't been tried?
President Obama is a highly intelligent man, but has limited experience. The military advisers on the White House staff should have dissuaded him from his current course of action. He has put himself into a corner and now has few viable options.
The Department of Defense has no more important responsibility than supporting and protecting those who defend our country, and that means we must do everything possible to prevent military suicide. When one of us faces a challenge, we all must stand together.
The pundits mostly are trying to figure out the president's tactics short term on the "next war" or "what this means politically." But Syria isn't the point. Politics isn't either. Our Constitution is.
Whether we like it or not, we are now playing a game of diplomatic and military chess in the Middle East, and like any good player, we must think through several moves ahead if we want to have any hopes of winning. So far our government has not done that.
Military action is a tactic not a policy. The decision to go to war should be linked to a broader strategy of creating a safe haven on Syria's border with Syria and Jordan. The safe haven would be protected by a no-fly-zone, enforced by NATO.