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Posts published in “Day: December 4, 2018”

Dancing with despots


The United States is showing a new face to the world and it isn’t a pretty one. No more Mr. Nice Guy trying to show the manifest benefits of democracy. No more of this nonsense about a free and unfettered press: Vladie Putin has demonstrated how to deal with them. And, selling death-dealing equipment to autocrats takes a much higher priority than calling them out for their vicious butchery.

Just because the Prince of Saudi Arabia sent a hit squad to a foreign country to make hamburger out of a journalist who had been peacefully and lawfully living in the United States is no reason to get all up in arms. It was just one guy and he was making himself a nuisance to the Prince by urging him to treat his subjects decently.

Besides, we can’t say with absolute certainty that the dear Prince ordered the drawing and quartering. Just because the guys in the hit squad knew from the Prince’s track record that they would be in a world of hurt if they did not follow his instructions to the tee, does not mean he gave them explicit instructions to slice and dice the fellow.

The Central Intelligence Agency concluded with a high degree of certainty that the Prince was behind the killing, but what do they know? They also claimed with that same degree of certainty that the Russians attacked our elections and just look where that went.

Everyone in the press is making such a big deal of the fact that the hit squad contained a doctor who routinely cut up bodies for autopsies and that he brought his bone saw to the event. What else would you expect him to take on a pleasure trip. He probably was only following that old motto, “Be prepared.”

Even if the hit was not the proper way to conduct business, we have to think about the economic aspects. The Saudis have agreed to buy about $14.5 billion dollars’ worth of military equipment from U.S. arms makers. That’s a lot of cabbage, especially if you round up the amount to $450 billion. It is just a dollars and cents proposition. You can’t let morality stand in the way of raking in the dough in this dangerous world.

Besides, the Saudis desperately need those weapons to kill people in Yemen. We have been giving them a hand in that enterprise and we can’t very well let them do it on their own. Where else are they going to get their cluster bombs? Most countries, at least 107, have gotten soft-hearted and signed a treaty to quit making or using them. The Saudis might be able to replenish their supply from Russia, China or some of the other autocratic countries, but why should we give up this lucrative business?

It is unfortunate that the war being conducted in Yemen by the Prince has resulted in the starvation of about 85,000 children to date but we have to understand that he is reforming his government. The President’s son-in-law gets along great with the Prince and that counts for something.

Bottom line, the old soft-headed America is out of date for these times. There will be no more preaching to dictators about the need to be nice and not brutalize their people. That gets in the way of making money and from now on it is profit over principle in this country, which was formerly respected for justice, dignity and moral courage.