Bill Moyers With Andrew Bacevich on the Travesty of “Preventive” War

War is an evil that should command our respect
Opinion • Views: 25,247

Vimeo

As we’re being drawn yet again into the mess created by the Bush administration’s disastrous war of choice in Iraq, here are some interesting and very pertinent comments from Bill Moyers and Andrew Bacevich on the immoral nature of “preventive” war.

BILL MOYERS: What is it about how we go to war? We poured blood and treasure into Vietnam and Iraq and wound up with exactly the opposite consequences than we wanted. And we keep repeating, hearing the same arguments and claims that we should do it again.

ANDREW BACEVICH: Well, war itself is evil. But war is an evil that should command our respect. War is something that we should not take lightly, that we should not discuss frivolously. And I think that that’s one of the great failings of our foreign policy establishment, that our foreign policy establishment does not take war seriously.

It assumes that the creation of precision guided weapons makes war manageable, removes from war the element of risk and chance that are always inherent in warfare. So these are people who, quite frankly, most of them don’t know much about war. And therefore who discuss war in frivolous ways.

BILL MOYERS: And yet, there’s this still almost religious belief in force as the savior.

ANDREW BACEVICH: Well, I think your use of religious terms is very appropriate here. Because there is a theological — quasi theological dimension to their thinking related, again, to this notion that we are called. We are chosen. We are the instrument of providence. Summoned to transform the world, and therefore empowered to use force in ways not permitted to any others. I mean, the ultimate travesty of the immediate period after 9/11 was the Bush administration’s embrace of preventive war that became then the rationale for invading Iraq in 2003. But it was a general claim — a general claim that the United States was empowered to use force preventively.

This is the kind of person who should be on the Sunday talk shows instead of McCain and Cheney and those windbags.

UPDATE at 6/19/14 6:19:22 pm by Charles Johnson

Another clip from this interview:

Vimeo

BACEVICH: We have been engaged in the Islamic world at least since 1980, in a military project based on the assumption that the adroit use of American hard power can somehow pacify or fix this part of the world. We can now examine more than three decades of this effort.

Let’s look at what U.S. military intervention in Iraq has achieved, in Afghanistan has achieved, in Somalia has achieved, in Lebanon has achieved, in Libya has achieved. I mean, ask ourselves the very simple question. Is the region becoming more stable? Is it becoming more democratic?

Are we alleviating, reducing the prevalence of anti-Americanism? I mean, if the answer is yes, then let’s keep trying. But if the answer to those questions is no, then maybe it’s time for us to recognize that this larger military project is failing and is not going to succeed simply by trying harder.

The events that are unfolding in Iraq at this very moment promote a debate within Washington revolving around the question, “What should we do about Iraq?” But there is a larger and more important question. And the larger and more important question has to do with the region as a whole. And the actual consequences of U.S. military action over the past 30 years.

Jump to top

Create a PageThis is the LGF Pages posting bookmarklet. To use it, drag this button to your browser's bookmark bar, and title it 'LGF Pages' (or whatever you like). Then browse to a site you want to post, select some text on the page to use for a quote, click the bookmarklet, and the Pages posting window will appear with the title, text, and any embedded video or audio files already filled in, ready to go.
Or... you can just click this button to open the Pages posting window right away.
Last updated: 2016-01-01 10:29 am PST
LGF User's Guide RSS Feeds Tweet

Help support Little Green Footballs!

Subscribe now for ad-free access!Register and sign in to a free LGF account before subscribing, and your ad-free access will be automatically enabled.

Recent PagesClick to refresh
Archaeology Shocker: Study Claims Humans Reached the Americas 130,000 Years Ago Image: origins-d511b624-2aa8-11e7-be51-b3fc6ff7faee.jpgThe surface of mastodon bone showing half impact notch on a segment of femur. MUST CREDIT: Photo by Tom Deméré, San Diego Natural History Museum Author: Sarah Kaplan, The Washington Post Some 130,000 years ago, scientists say, a ...
Cheechako
41 minutes ago
Views: 37 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 0
Tweets: 0 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 0
Comments: 0
: 0
STEALTHING: the Growing Movement of Men Who Secretly Remove Condoms During Sex Two years ago, a 19-year-old Florida teen posted a call for advice in the subreddit askgaybros. In the post, he said he met a guy on Grindr and went back to his place to hook up. When the guy ...
Birth Control Works
2 days, 2 hours ago
Views: 510 • Comments: 6 • Rating: 1
Tweets: 0 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 2
Comments: 0
: 0
Trump-Free Sunday Mornings-Daily Beast We think it’s time to go on a more balanced Donald Diet—call it a Sabbath for sanity. And that’s why we’re going to embark on a new experiment: Trump-free Sunday mornings. Barring major breaking news, for a few hours ...
Unshaken Defiance
2 days, 11 hours ago
Views: 225 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 0
Tweets: 1 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 3
Comments: 0
: 0
Video: John Muir - The Last Oasis John Muir - The Last Oasis is a short film directed by Michael Coleman a Martinez, California native inspired by the writings of naturalist, author and early advocate of wilderness preservation John Muir. Many of the locations featured in ...
teleskiguy
2 days, 23 hours ago
Views: 467 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 2
Tweets: 0 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 0
Comments: 0
: 0
The Woman Who Saved Lower Manhattan From Becoming a Highway What makes a city? It's not the buildings (skyscrapers) or the streets (traffic), or the banks and government offices and shopping districts sandwiched between them. It's the people. This is obvious nearly to the point of tautology, yet in ...
Birth Control Works
3 days, 6 hours ago
Views: 370 • Comments: 2 • Rating: 1
Tweets: 0 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 0
Comments: 0
: 0
Domestic Violence Shelters Make Plea for State Budget Resolution A group of domestic violence shelter representatives and other human services advocates gathered at Mutual Ground's headquarters in Aurora Wednesday morning to again make a plea for a resolution on the state's budget crisis and to call attention to ...
Birth Control Works
3 days, 9 hours ago
Views: 231 • Comments: 1 • Rating: 1
Tweets: 0 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 0
Comments: 0
: 0
This Wasn’t the First Act of ‘River Piracy’ to Affect the Yukon’s Biggest Lake Image: Kluane11.jpg Author: Dermot Cole, Alaska Dispatch News Canadian geologist John Clague, whose research on Kluane Lake began in 1980, has long believed that the biggest river flowing into the largest lake in the Yukon Territory could be switched ...
Cheechako
4 days, 1 hour ago
Views: 277 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 0
Tweets: 1 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 0
Comments: 0
: 0
BBC Radio 4 - Seriously… - Seriously… - 10 Women Who Changed Sci-Fi 10 Women Who Changed Sci-Fi As the Radio 4 documentary Herland examines how science fiction tackles ideas of gender in future worlds, we present a selection of great female authors who have radically altered the genre... Mary Shelley Credited ...
Birth Control Works
4 days, 2 hours ago
Views: 390 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 3
Tweets: 1 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 0
Comments: 0
: 0
Housing Vouchers Would Change the Face of Poverty - Vice VICE: What should every renter understand about their rights?Matthew Desmond: Rights vary from city to city, so getting to know your rights is a matter of knowing where you live, as they can actually be very fair. For example, ...
Birth Control Works
4 days, 2 hours ago
Views: 386 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 0
Tweets: 1 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 0
Comments: 0
: 0
Craig Finn - ‘Be Honest’ (Live at WFUV)wfuv.org • Follow @wfuv: ow.ly Craig Finn performs "Be Honest" live in Studio A. Recorded 2.21.17. Host: Eric HollandAudio: Jim O'HaraCameras: Sabrina Sitton, Michael Sperling, Kevin O'Malley & Alexandra ReillyEditor: Kevin O'Malley & Sarah Burns
Tarkloon
4 days, 2 hours ago
Views: 232 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 0
Tweets: 0 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 0
Comments: 0
: 0