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Monday, April 09, 2018

Dearest John Bolton

by tristero

Dearest John,

Now that you're National Security Advisor, I assume you will try to implement the first-strike plan you outlined recently. It's discussed with considerable alarm in this article the NY Times. And I've read for years about your general enthusiasm for military solutions, despite what some of your acolytes are saying to try to reassure the rest of us that you're basically ok. Well, I have some advice from history for you.

One of your heroes is clearly General Curtis Lemay, who commanded the firebombing of Tokyo during WW 2 and was George Wallace's running partner for president. Here is Gen. Lemay and one of his cronies secretly taped during the Cuban Missile Crisis of November, 1962:
General LeMay: If we don't do anything to Cuba, then they're going to push on Berlin, and push real hard because they've got us on the run. . . . This blockade and political action, I see leading into war. . . .This is almost as bad as the appeasement at Munich. . . . I just don't see any other solution except direct military action right now. . . . A blockade, and political talk, would be considered by a lot of our friends and neutrals as being a pretty weak response to this. And I'm sure a lot of our own citizens would feel that way, too. You're in a pretty bad fix, Mr. President. 
The President: What did you say? 
General LeMay: You're in a pretty bad fix. 
The meeting ends. General LeMay and Gen. David Shoup of the Marines linger. General Shoup is impressed by the other's bluntness: 
General Shoup: You pulled the rug right out from under him. Goddamn. 
General LeMay: Jesus Christ. What the hell do you mean? 
General Shoup: Somebody's got to keep them from doing the goddamn thing piecemeal. That's our problem. . . . Do the son of a bitch, and do it right. . . .

Lemay also said:
Now, as for the Berlin situation, I don’t share your view that if we knock off Cuba, they’re going to knock off Berlin. We’ve got the Berlin problem staring us in the face anyway. If we don’t do anything to Cuba, then they’re going to push on Berlin and push real hard because they’ve got us on the run. If we take military action against Cuba, then I think that the . . . 
JFK What do you think their reprisal would be? 
LeMay I don’t think they’re going to make any reprisal if we tell them that the Berlin situation is just like it’s always been.

Sounds like you, doesn't it? The bluntness, the belligerence, the over-confidence spilling into hubris. And Lemay went to his grave believing he was right, that Kennedy was a coward, and he should have invaded Cuba, that if JFK had only listened to him, the US would have prevailed within days.

But what Lemay didn't know was that had Kennedy invaded Cuba, American troops would almost certainly have been met by tactical nuclear missiles. The immediate number of casualties would have been catastrophic and within days, there would have been global nuclear war.

As for Lemay's prediction that "This blockade and political action, I see leading into war:" The war never happened.

In short, dearest John, you don't know what you're doing and your belligerent attitude is likely to lead to a worldwide disaster. People far more level-headed than me are terrified you have this job.

So, John, please do us all a huge favor and resign now. Today. Immediately. It's the right thing to do.

Thanks for taking the time to read this letter.