Bob Herbert, an Op-Ed columnist for the NY Times, makes an excellent case for the obscenity of our wars in Afghanistan and Iraq.
He points out that less than one percent of our population is in the military, and that the same small percentage keeps on sacrificing by having numerous tours of duty in one or the other nation, with most Americans not giving it a thought, and not contributing anything to the war effort except making patriotic statements that they back the men and women who are there and want them to have all of the military equipment they need to fight for us.
But without a draft, and the stubborn unwillingness to pay more taxes, and with our government not requiring any kind of sacrifice by 99 percent of the American people, it means we as a nation are immune to what war means–the fact that many military people either die, or return with major physical and mental problems from their combat tours, while we go on our merry way living the American dream, without any commitment at all to our country, except to make money and practice materialism and greed as a motivator.
We are fighting wars with the equivalent of a small group of dedicated Americans who care about their country and its security, while most of the country has no concern because there is no draft and no tax burden.
One way to make Americans realize what we are doing overseas would be to reinstitute the draft or impose a war tax. If nothing else, having young Americans serve in the Peace Corps or start a new Civilian Conservation Corps as alternatives would make the American people begin to appreciate their responsibility to the nation and remind us of the nation that would not be what it is now without the massive sacrifices of past generations.