When I was a kid a million years ago, during the 1980s, our president was a doddering simpleton who really, really hated communists.
The Gipper once made a “joke” that the United States was going to nuke the Soviet Union. He didn’t know the mic was on, and the chiste didn’t go over so well. In fact, the comment was “taken seriously by the Soviets, who stood on alert for 30 minutes.”
As horrific as this gaffe was, at least Reagan wasn’t serious.
The same cannot be said for the current GOP inhabitant of the White House. Trump wasn’t joking, and he knew full well his microphone was on, as he stood in front of dozens of world leaders and threatened “to totally destroy North Korea.”
As many people have pointed out, the man is no Reagan.
In any case, most of the sane people in the world had a decidedly negative reaction to an ill-tempered buffoon with access to nuclear weapons spouting off about starting a cataclysmic war.
But to the minds of conservatives, well, the United States can never have enough death and destruction.
You see, over half of Republicans “support conducting airstrikes on North Korean nuclear facilities.”
That action would, of course, lead to a full-on war, with disastrous consequences for our allies, South Korea and Japan, and possibly massive casualties for America.
At the very least, it would cost us a lot of money, but then again, those would be special war dollars, and we have an infinite amount of them (as opposed to, say, health care dollars or education dollars or infrastructure dollars… but I digress).
Regardless, what’s interesting about this latest manifestation of right-wing warmongering is that it comes immediately after many conservatives had declared this whole North Korean thing over and done with.
Remember way back when North Korea was threatening to attack Guam, and Trump tweeted out some belligerent nonsense, and the entire world was on edge because it looked like two sociopathic narcissists were going to plunge the whole planet into hellish nuclear annihilation?
Yeah, we can all laugh about it now.
Oh, wait, it’s only Republicans who can laugh about it. You see, this all went down mere weeks ago. At the time, many conservatives insisted that Trump’s hostility had paid off, and that North Korea had “blinked,” which seems to have meant, “They haven’t nuked Seattle yet.”
So maybe that wasn’t the best strategy after all.
But according to conservatives, all we really need to do is take out that pudgy guy in Asia. He needs a warhead dropped on him — like now!
Of course, we can talk about the GOP predilection for international violence. They truly seem to believe there is no issue that can’t be solved with a hastily planed, poorly designed invasion.
But for people obsessed with preserving the past — from resurrecting a mythical era to putting up statues of their treacherous ancestors — conservatives have no grasp of history. And I mean recent history, from the last decade.
I would like to ask all those people who are clamoring for war with North Korea the following question: “Weren’t you saying the exact same thing in 2003, but about Iraq?”
Yes, for conservatives with poor memories, it was the GOP who insisted that marching into the Middle East was a great idea, and would make the world safer, and would pay for itself, and that we would never ever regret it.
Well, it’s not even a generation later, and we all pretty much regret it (to the point that we even lie about supporting the war in the first place).
So why would bombing Korea be any different than launching missiles at Iraq? If anything, it would be far worse, with an even more predictable result of massive death and chaos.
Maybe Republicans just like to talk tough and act out their perpetual anger. Or maybe their nostalgia for the 1950s has hit a new low.
After all, from 1950 to 1952, we issued “rain and ruin by the US air force. Pyongyang had been razed to the ground, with the Air Force stating in official documents that the North’s cities suffered greater damage than German and Japanese cities firebombed during World War II.” Oh, and by the way, the Korean War also killed 37,000 American troops.
And yet here we are, over 60 years later, still insisting that we can bomb our way out of this mess. We’re still demanding more blood, and more rah-rah, super-patriotic, can-do American warfare overseas.
Because this time it will solve all our problems, despite all the recent evidence to the contrary in Iraq and the evidence of the actual fucking war in Korea decades ago.
Yes, apparently even God himself wants us to bomb North Korea.
So I’m sure it will all work out just fine.