America Is In a State of Perpetual War
The recent death of a Navy Seal in a raid on a mountain hideout in Yemen is not the first death of a soldier thousands of miles from America. Harry Truman set the ball rolling when he intervened in Korea against China and the North Koreans. The battle was a stalemate. Truman was a realist and when his commanding general McArthur advocated the atomic bombing of China, he dismissed the general. After 3 years of fighting Truman threw in the towel and agreed to a cease-fire. Though the Korean war ended yet the cycle of wars just commenced. That was the beginning and the Americans got involved in conflicts thousands of miles from home. It's been a perpetual war
Looking at the map one can see that right from the Middle East to Vietnam and East Africa the US armed forces have been waging a covert or overt war for the last 6 decades. The results have not commiserated with the effort as they failed to win in Korea and lost decisively in Vietnam. The war in Afghanistan is not won and despite 2 victories in Iraq, the area is still not sanitized and thousands are getting killed.
Donald and War
The enemy getting killed is part of the game but when thousands of young Americans are killed, then the American role needs to be evaluated afresh. The advent of Donald Trump with an administration dominated by generals does not augur well for the future. Donald himself in a statement has asked for an increase in the defense budget. He is the view that the Americans have been losing wars all the time. He says that if you fight then you must win or not fight at all. This is his justification for a massive increase in the defense budget. Donald is right in his assessment of the American war effort, but by just increasing the budget is not a guarantee of victory. This is a simplistic solution and is not borne out by facts.
An example is an ongoing battle of Mosul. Here is an Iraqi army with tanks and complete control of the air taking months to capture a city which is held by fighters without air cover and tanks. What does this mean? Consider that this Iraqi army has nearly 5000 advisors and special troops from the USA and the USAF has created as per Giulio Douhet's theory a " favorable air situation". This should be a prelude to a quick victory but months have passed and the Iraqi army is making a painful advance.
The Americans have not won in Afghanistan and the Russian were defeated there. They had superior weaponry but that alone is not a substitute for victory. The battle in Afghanistan is closer to our era, but Vietnam was similarly lost. One wishes Donald is able to read into this enigma. He is a dynamic man and perhaps he will not play into the hands of the hawks by even putting the US against the Russians. This would be a disaster. He would do well to study the geopolitical situation and embark on a war only if he is sure of victory.
I have the last question. Could he not give up this concept of "perpetual war" with thousands of young men dying miles away from home in chasing an impossible dream