I couldn't feel celebratory about somebody like that, and I didn't vote for the guy because I didn't like what he'd been saying for months vis-a-vis Afghanistan (that he would expand the war there) and Pakistan (that he would expand the war there). My misgivings were ignored by the Obama supporters I talked to. Typical of the repsonses was that of my sister, who said something to the effect that Obama was just "talking tough" in order to get elected, but he was really peace-loving at heart.
Well, now we all know that's a pile of shit, right?
According to the NY Times, Obama is weighing plans to attack the Pakistani city of Quetta, the provincial capitol of Balunchistan and one of the largest cities after Karachi, Lahore, Islamabad and Peshawar. This is a pretty huge fucking deal and the resultant silence from the "liberal left" is staggering. If W. had announced this plan, or McCain, then all those good lefty-thinking northeastern liberals would be out there protesting, but since the plan is emanating from a supposedly progressive (huh?) politician, anything goes.
The theory, by the way, is that he will destroy Al-Qadea and Taliban targets there, and so the world will be safe for everybody. It's the same flawed logic that spurred W.'s Afghan war in 2002, and the Iraq war in 2003, not to mention the ongoing missile strikes into Pakistan since 2004. Lest we forget, Al-Qaeda and the Taliban were created by the US in the 1980s to fight the Soviets in Afghanistan, at which point, they were going to make the world safe for everybody. (Ronald Reagan called them the "moral equivalent to the Founding Fathers.")
What gets left out of the thinking when people talk about bombs and drones and missile strikes, is:
a. the strategy hasn't worked yet,which is why the war keeps creeping from place to place (Afghanistan to the tribal areas to Baluchistan to who knows where); and
b. lots and lots and lots of innocent people die.
Admittedly, US policy doesn't give a fuck about that, and nor do US politicians, Obama included, and nor do (from what I can see) the majority of US citizens. Please remember, three days after Obama's inauguration, he authorized the continuation of missile strikes into Pakistan. 15 people were killed that day in a village in Waziristan, mostly women and children. The strikes continues on a weekly-or-more-often basis. Raise your hand if you give a fuck. I mean, really.
On the other hand, if even one such strike occurred on US territory, the hounds would be baying for blood...
Expanding the war into Baluchistan will have any number of negative consequences, all of them dire. It could easily split Pakistan into pieces, which is at least one potential goal of the policy. It will radicalize a segment of the citizenry which, until now, has been relatively moderate. It will swell numbers of Taliban and Al-Qaeda recruits. It will further weaken the already-weak and corrupt federal government. Any of these results can and will be used as further justification for more military action in which more people who have never done a damn thing to the US or its citizenry will die.
But who cares, right? They're just niggers, right?
Oh wait, we can't say that anymore, now that Obama's president.
I'm glad I voted for Nader.