QOTD: A very bad man
All that we have to do is to send two Mujahedin to the farthest point East to raise a piece of cloth on which is written al-Qa’ida in order to make the generals race there to cause America to suffer human economic and political losses without their achieving for it anything of note other than some benefits to their private companies… So we are continuing this policy in bleeding America to the point of bankruptcy. --- Osama bin laden
Via Matt Duss whose piece on the President's speech is well worth your time. It ends with this astute observation:
Speaking as a candidate in 2008 of his intention to withdraw from Iraq, Obama said, “I don't want to just end the war, but I want to end the mindset that got us into war in the first place.” It was a statement that inspired a great many progressives, this one included. But every day of his presidency has shown how hard that is to change that mindset, and he continues to be battered and buffeted by it. It’s also impossible to ignore the fact that, by constantly asserting vast executive authority for various anti-terrorism measures, from drone strikes to surveillance, Obama has also affirmed and strengthened that mindset. Like Corleone, he’s complicit in his own entrapment. And it’s something progressives will have to continue to struggle with long after his presidency ends.
That's the deep state at work. And the problem goes far beyond executive power. As I've been writing for some time, the ultimate answers lie in our commitment to empire (and our dependence on oil.) This is probably going to get worse as other resources become more precious due to climate change. Most Americans like being an empire with all that that implies. But the costs are mounting.