By Hillary Clinton
“I didn’t want to go here, but Chelsea’s baby wants us to act.”
My fellow American citizens. In this time of trouble, when the American nation is beset on every side by foes bent on its destruction, it’s more important than ever that we stand together as one. I know some of you were angry when I took President Obama to task for being weak-willed and indecisive earlier. And I’d just like to say that while he hasn’t acted as tough, or been as decisive as I would’ve been had you elected me in 2008, even he has seen the need, now, for us to stand together as a people, and lead a coalition of nations against the Islamic State, or ISIS, or ISIL. He knows that the time has come to do something – anything. He understands, as I have for some time, that if we don’t act, we risk not acting at all.
Let that sink in. Even now, we run the very real risk of continuing to do nothing while this crisis unfolds.
And that’s the worst thing possible. Just ask my husband, Bill, who’s been on record saying that not acting, choosing instead to usher in an unprecedented era of American economic prosperity during the massacre in Rwanda, was his biggest regret. Now, he couldn’t have done much – if you look back at newspapers from the time (as I have instructed my capable staff of non-2016-election-campaign-volunteers to do) you’ll see that we didn’t have half the momentum to intervene there that we do with Syria or Iraq – mostly, I suspect, because Republicans hate black people. Which is neither here nor there. The point is, Bill didn’t act and it haunted him. For example, he may be the only person in the world who watched “Hotel Rwanda” more than once. Can you imagine such a thing? To sit through that example of Oscar-bait trash required an actual, deliberate exertion of my not-unsubstantial will – and he watched it twice. It’s practically an obsession.
Worst of all, when you think about it (as few of us do, ever, let’s be honest), is how that genocide unfolded so quickly, and was really over before we could do anything. The time to act came and went, and life has gone on pretty much as it did before, without any negative consequences for anyone beyond the people living there. About whom, if we’re being frank with ourselves, few people care. Global instability doesn’t really threaten us, although if we were to sustain lengthy involvements in other countries indefinitely, it could destabilize our economy. Whatever, we’ll figure that out later. That’s not the point.
The point is, we have momentum to act now in Syria and we must – before we lose it. Acting – bombing, destroying – will make us feel a lot better. Heck, it’s not going to make things worse, things are already terrible. The ISIS and Islamic State and Al Qaeda legions (or, you know, the units and such) are stronger than ever. Even though in every other war we’ve fought, bombing with the most restrictive rules of engagement seems only to create more civilian casualties and enrage the population being bombed (forcing them closer to their presumably criminal, repressive government and therefore reaffirming that government’s claims of legitimacy), it also creates massive, awesome explosions, which we can see on the news, and use to reassure ourselves that we’ve done some tangible good in the world. That we’ve done something.
I’m not going to lie – it’s great business for America, too. The 47 Tomahawk cruise missiles *alone* cost almost $75 million dollars, to say nothing of the cost of deploying costly and maintenance-heavy jets, the bombs we’re dropping (most precision-guided munitions clock in at $80,000 a pop), the ships needed to launch the cruise missiles, etc. The number is so big, it’s tough to ballpark. Let’s just say that American businesses that dominate this sort of action just hit the lottery, and stand to make a lot more money in the coming days. And hey – that’s good for the economy. You don’t need to subscribe to “trickle-down economics” to see how making business for American employers and employees helps our bottom line as a nation, unless you hate America. And you don’t hate America, do you, my friends? My countrymen and women? Citizens like myself, and Bill, and Chelsea, and her baby? What about Chelsea’s baby?
I didn’t want to go here, but Chelsea’s baby wants us to act. That’s right. A tiny child, barely old enough to perceive the difference in shades of color, incapable of speech, would be disgusted if we were to sit on our hands and miss this golden opportunity to do something magnificently pointless, save for the aforementioned benefits to U.S. industry as well as the fact that it will satisfy some primitive emotional desire to see things done. Chelsea’s baby needs this, America. Don’t deprive an innocent, sweet human child of pleasure, and bring tears of sadness to its squinty, too-perceptive eyes.
Anyway, what do you people have against action, anyway? Would you rather just watch and see which violent, extremist group emerges from the chaos of war, without doing anything? Which hate-filled, ideologically or religiously intolerant group develops while the Middle East burns? I admit, that is certainly the eventual outcome whatever we do, I’m not a fool. No sane or rational human being with even the most superficial understanding of history would dispute that claim. Things are going to be a lot worse in a couple years, exponentially worse, for our foreign policy and strategic interests in the region, almost incalculably so. Let’s just say I’m not planning on going back there, ever, and leave it at that. So why can’t we have some fun before the lines metastasize, and we can’t fly over Persia or the Greater Arab-Turkic Republic (GATR)?
We’ll never get this opportunity to act again, America. Bombing targets in Syria – who thought we’d do that? Bombing targets in Iraq – twice as fun the second time around. And we might, if we’re really careful about this, end up being able to put more boots on the ground, as well as bombing targets in Libya, and – it’s not too much for an old, increasingly-demented woman to hope – maybe even Egypt, Iran, Turkey, Saudi Arabia and Qatar as well. Wouldn’t that be something! Wouldn’t that just be the best!
Please, before it’s too late, America – we must act. And once we’ve started, let’s not stop this time until we’re good and ready.