Never Forget

Today is Pearl Harbor Day  Cassin Downes

That is the Wreck of the USS Cassin, and USS Downes.  In the background is the USS Pennsylvania.  It is a lesson in being unprepared, and in the folly of believing our oceans still protect us.  America took a stand against Japanese imperial aggression in east Asia by passing sanctions against Japan, but we were unprepared for war.

There are those who argue Pearl Harbor is a lesson in getting involved, and those who argue it cautions against isolationism.  I am in the latter category.  America’s entrance into World War II was inevitable, but the sense of isolationism that pervaded the American populace left the country wholly unprepared for war, and left Pearl Harbor vulnerable.  There is no going back to the days when we could count on the Royal Navy to protect global trade networks.  That responsibility now falls on us.  Pearl Harbor is a big part of the reason I can’t vote for Ron Paul.   Whether you call it isolationism or non-interventionism is of little matter to me.   Paul’s philosophy is inward looking.  While I share his concerns about our nation remaining sovereign, the United States has a role to play in the world, and Pearl Harbor was the wakeup call that it was time to step up.

6 thoughts on “Never Forget”

  1. I was going to make a similar Anti-Paul statement today (I may still if I find the time).

    I agree with Paul on most of the issues, but this one sets him aside as unviable. You can disband the IRS and the ATF et al untill the cows come home….it doesn’t make a lick of difference when a mushroom cloud is rising over an American City…

  2. Excellent point on isolationism. I guess when people say “can’t we go back to the time before the US projected military power,” I keep thinking of Thomas Jefferson and the Barbary Pirates.

    Sure, there is more global trade than ever before. But it seems fanciful to harken back to a time that didn’t really exist.

  3. Wow, amazing how an event that was directly caused by US meddling in the Pacific Rim can be used as an attack on Ron Paul.

    Please look at the history. By various means, mainly political, the US government worked hard to block Japanese access to oil and rubber, both of which were necessary for the further industrialization of Japan. Yes, they were also useful militarily. Had the US government not intervened in that area the Pearl Harbor attack would likely have not happened.

    Honestly, look and research, do what you accuse the gun control advocates of not doing. Please do not do as they do and accept what the media and public schools have fed you without verifying it.

  4. I’m well aware of the history, which I alluded to in the post. The question was whether Japan could be allowed to establish an east asian and pacific empire. That was certainly their ambition, and the idea that the United States could just sit back while they did it is not one I agree with. Japan would have joined the triparte alliance due to their ongoing problems with the Soviet Union.

    I don’t think we could have reasonably stayed out of the second world war. We would have been attacked by one power or another at some point, because we had interests all over the world, and the European empires that had traditionally protected those interests were collapsing under Hitler.

    In short, America could afford to look inward for the first hundred years of its existence. The First World War was a fatal wound to the British Empire, which we had relied on to maintain global trade networks for most of our existence. We could afford an isolationist stance because we had the Royal Navy to do our dirty work for us. Now the situation is reversed. The Europeans get away with spending next to nothing on defense because they free ride off our role in being the world’s policeman.

    So yes, I used Pearl Harbor as an excuse for saying why I think Paul’s foreign policy ideas are dangerous. The United State has a role to play in the world, and we have interests in the world. Our economy is part of a global one, and we can no longer look inward. If we accept Dr. Paul’s philosophy:

    I believe our founding fathers had it right when they argued for peace and commerce between nations, and against entangling political and military alliances. In other words, noninterventionism.

    Noninterventionism is not isolationism. Nonintervention simply means America does not interfere militarily, financially, or covertly in the internal affairs of other nations. It does not we that we isolate ourselves; on the contrary, our founders advocated open trade, travel, communication, and diplomacy with other nations.

    But what do you do when another country threatens that system? How do you keep that system together? Do you ignore threats to that system until they are actively attacking it? Or do you deal with those potential threats before it comes to that?

    Paul’s philosophy sounds great, but when you get down to it, if you want open trade, travel, and communication, someone has to protect that from those that don’t. Trying to do it they way we did with Japan, through other means, while being wholly unprepared for war, is what lead to Pearl Harbor. How would Ron have stopped Japanese imperial ambitions?

  5. The U.S. was basically pissed off at Japan for invading China. That’s why the U.S. began to limit trade with it.

    (The embargo could have been enacted earlier as part of the Neutrality Acts, which were in support of isolationism.)

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