So today’s Maui News staff editorial (subscription required)–which comes from the desk of publisher Joe Bradley–all but calls for an immediate, total assault on Syria. Using the word “monster” three times in as many column inches to describe Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad’s recent alleged use of chemical weapons in that country’s civil war, The Maui News said the U.S. and its allies “must act very soon to stop the slaughter and remove Assad from power.”
“What kind of man would sanction the killing of so many innocents?” the editorial asked. “How could someone who is a father slaughter children?”
Not to throw too much cold water on The Maui News’ call for yet another righteous war against a Middle Eastern nation–or diminish the severity of Assad’s crimes if he, in fact, did gas his own people–but the United States is hardly of moral standing to lead such a crusade against weapons of mass destruction. And I’m not even talking about the miserable, bloody, unnecessary invasion and occupation of Iraq.
To the questions the paper posed about “what man” would do such horrible things, the American President Harry Truman–who was also a father–comes to mind. He is, after all, still the only world lead to order nuclear bombings–in his case, the Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, which were, as Truman himself knew only too well, were full of many thousands of children.
Bradley’s questions are, of course, perfectly valid, though if we’re talking about applying morality to military actions, they’re more than 60 years too late.
Photo of Nagasaki atomic blast: National Archives/Wikimedia Commons