The March to War

Listen! The war drums are beating. Chemical weapons have evidently been used in Syria.The President of The United States says a ‘red line’ has been crossed. America’s allies concur: ‘If the regime in Syria has used chemical weapons, then they must be punished.’

Russia is opposed to military intervention against their long-time ally; China also opposes a military option. Russia predicts that this will be a protracted war. That sounds like a threat—or a promise.

Iran and Hezbollah won’t sit idly by while their ally is attacked: they will retaliate. Still, the war drums sound a hypnotic marching beat.

It is disheartening to think that egos are helping push nations closer to the brink of war; national pride plays a role as well. A red line has been announced, accompanied by vague threats of punitive action should it be disregarded. Shame would tar any leader or nation whose threat rings hollow.

The march to war can take on a momentum that cannot be stopped. It may have already begun. With the U.S. and N.A.T.O. on one side, and Russia on the other, perhaps in a supporting role, no one can predict how long and costly this war will become. Unexpected and undesirable consequences could be legion.

Oh, the drums of war! How abominable!

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