Monday, January 17, 2011

MLK Day - and Other Anniversaries

Today is Martin Luther King Day.

It is also the 50th anniversary of President Dwight Eisenhower's farewell address, on January 17th 1961:

I grew up in South Seattle (Burien). When Eisenhower was inaugurated, I was in the 2nd grade. When he gave his farewell address, I was in junior high school. At night, you could hear the jet engines of brand new B-47s and B-52s warming up, and the sounds of these giant bombers winging their ways from testing facilities to bases and back. We would practice "duck-and-cover" under our school desks once per month. For years.

In the seven years between Eisenhower's speech and Martin Luther King's death, Dr. King had an epiphany on the evils of war far greater than that of President Eisenhower:

Yesterday - Sunday - was the 20th anniversary of the launch of the aerial bombing phase of Operation Desert Storm. For twenty years, we've been involved in almost perpetual war against Iraq. For over ten years we have been involved in war against Afghanistan.

Here's Rep. Ron Paul, last July, addressing the U.S. House on the 20th anniversary of April Glaspie's helping to start this awful conflagration, by telling Saddam Hussein that our interests in what he did in the matters of Iraqi-Kuwaiti relations were basically a local issue of minor importace to Americans:

Eisenhower was right; King was absolutely right; Rep. Paul is correct to continue to point out the absurdity of constantly pursuing one war after another that we cannot win in meaningful terms.

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