President Barack Obama via his State Department’s Marie Harf said, earlier this week, that the United States “cannot win this war by killing [Islamic State fighters] . . . [and that] we need, in the medium- to longer-term, to go after the root causes that lead people to join these groups, whether it’s lack of opportunity for jobs, whether . . .”
One hundred and fifty years ago today, Union Gen. William Tecumseh Sherman left Columbia, S.C. in ruins after having killed enough Confederate rebels in the Palmetto State and Georgia to ensure eventual victory in the War Between the States. Sherman understood the root causes of pride, arrogance, greed and slavery, i.e. sin, and that killing enough of the “causers”, in their heretofore untouched antebellum paradise, would tear out the roots for generations.
German Nazis and Imperial Japanese had their root causes torn out via just enough killing by FDR’s Patton and HST’s Enola Gay. Yes, Ms. Harf, after the killing there may be time to deal with root causes in a non-violent way with Marshall Plans or MacArthur viceroys, but only after enough enemies are dead so as to concentrate the minds and hearts of the survivors.
In fact, Marie’s boss Barack inherited a root cause-prevention device in Iraq when he took office in 2009. President George W. Bush, after staying the course there and overcoming the Democrat enemy’s “Bush-Lied” campaign in the homeland, surged to victory over al Qaeda and Saddam’s Baathists, with the aid of freedom-seeking Iraqis, by killing tens of thousands of those that had been trained to wage jihad over here, before we put at risk their homeland over there. In the process, we gathered intel via waterboarding and by having stayed the course and earning the trust of Muslim informers – which led, ironically, to President Obama’s only finest moment, i.e. the killing of Usama bin Laden after Obama had opposed the surge and waterboarding, or as I like to call it, nose-swabbing.
Sometimes Marie, you have to enhance-interrogate enough enemies to win wars. Then you can let the survivors create jobs, like Americans used to be allowed to do before your Spread-the-Wealth-in-Chief, via free market capitalism. Think South Korea and Japan after the deluge and thanks to a residual armed U.S. force to keep the minds concentrated.
But what did Obama do upon taking office? He removed our residual force in Iraq, thus returning it to the root cause, this time named ISIS. Need any extra towels to sop up the blood on you and B. Hussein’s manicured hands, Miss Harf?
DeVine History in Real Time
On February 17, 1865, Sherman’s March through the Carolinas arrived at the fount from which secession had sprung four long bloody years earlier. Hundreds of thousands of rebels had been killed at Antietam, Gettysburg, Vicksburg and countless other battles. Atlanta had fallen and Sherman had completed his celebrated March to the Sea and conquered Savannah as a Christmas gift to President Lincoln. But Confederate General Robert E. Lee’s Army of Northern Virginia still held out at Perersburg, Va.
Not enough killing and destruction had yet been been done. The root cause of Southern pride had to be killed, including many of the bodies housing that pride and buildings housing the bullets and cotton.
Before leaving Savannah for what Confederate generals would deem an even greater achievement than the March to the Sea, on par with Julius Caesar, in marching across the Salkiehatchie swamps of the South Carolina Low Country, Georgians said to Sherman: “Why don’t you go over to South Carolina and serve them this way? They started it.”
He did. And while soldiers would often apologize to poor South Carolinians as they burned war assets, they would all refrain:
“But, South Carolina must be destroyed”.
The root cause of slavery and the soldiers defending that “way of life” was destroyed and thus gone with the wind. It took 100 more years to force Democrats to also destroy Jim Crow, but that progress was only made possible because Lincoln, Sherman and Gen. Ulysses S. Grant were willing to kill enough of the enemy to win the Civil War.
War is Hell. So is losing them to tyrants. Let’s not.
“One man with courage makes a majority”. – Andrew Jackson