The new year has barely begun and already one car bomb in Iraq killed 35 people, while another killed 11, three 18-year-olds and one 24-year-old beat up a defenseless 18-year-old, five people were shot and killed and six were wounded by a deranged apparent ISIS sympathizer at the Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood, Florida airport, a US diplomat was brazenly shot and wounded in Guadalajara, Mexico, and as I write this, Israel is again dealing with the aftermath of a terrorist attack as four young soldiers were killed, three of them women, and 15 others were wounded, two very seriously, by a Jew-hater ramming his truck through a group of young Israeli soldiers.
If I dug deeper into world headlines I am sure I could find more very recent tragedies, large and small, from continent to continent.
Cities in uncivilized places continue to rack up bloody body counts, as cities in civilized places do the same. Chicago, not so civilized I think it is fair to say, had 3550 shootings and 762 killings last year.
What the hell is going on?
Now I am not ignorant. Violence, especially in volatile areas is nothing new. But it seems to me, even accounting for our internet/cable news/social media, 24/7 news cycle showing and screaming out every disaster for the small screen and web videos, in my lifetime the violence has never been worse. The wholesale disrespect for, and slaughter of, human life just keeps happening where, unless you have a connection to anyone lost, you become numb to the carnage.
I find the “oh well” acceptance of the brutality nearly as evil as the brutality itself, and I continue to be appalled there is no sense of urgency to do something, anything, by those responsible for leading not just their people, but the world.
All of the sad misfortunes mentioned above do have something in common.
And that takes me to the “leader” of the free world – now on a self-congratulatory “farewell” tour, and other “leaders,” those holier-than-thou, noses in the air, elitist hypocrites and pompous lecturers, who shield their eyes from the worst problems on this earth, many created or enabled by them, as they look to deflect by blaming others for issues far less pressing.
Fecklessness as well as one-sided condemnation send exactly the wrong message to the thugs of the world, be they in the Mideast or the Midwest. This lack of oh so necessary leadership has been a scourge of the planet. It has woven itself into the fabric of the societies of this bruised planet, a black thread of destruction first following but now leading the mayhem in its threaded wake.
It has been plenty argued that going into Iraq after 9/11 was wrong, but once in, leaving Iraq too quickly was worse. ISIS as well as Iran – that nuclear terrorist state receiver of American naiveté and largesse, have been claiming land and influence.
Abandoning Syria to ISIS and the “red line” crossing-without-promised-repercussion butcher Assad sent a clear message of everything that is the exact opposite of resolve and robust influence. A laughing Vladimir Putin then entered the vacuum. Only yesterday, the “leader” of the free world told a television journalist in a puff piece interview that he did not underestimate the Russian president. And Putin continues to chuckle.
The hometown of the United States president had been for years a shooting gallery but not only has murder escalated – and I do not mourn for any gang member believe me, but I do for innocents in the line of fire, human scum not only torment and torture a special needs young man, but cared so little about any human dignity, they proudly streamed the hateful persecution live.
This as one of their own who could have, should have, made race relations better, holds the highest office in the land. And this delusional president actually said race relations are better than they were 20 years ago, even though most African Americans themselves think we have gone backwards these last eight years. Incredible.
The FBI will have to answer why it did not in the very least put, what appears to be, a mentally ill army veteran on the no-fly list after he himself had gone to an Alaska FBI office complaining of CIA voices forcing him to join ISIS, an entity nonexistent eight years ago. So he boarded a plane with a gun and ammunition, and travelers paid the price at his destination.
It is one thing for hostile forces to murder US diplomats in Libya, quite another for a vice consul to be gunned down in a resort town of Mexico. But not really when weakness gives license to those who have no fear of what was once a feared nation.
When the truck driving terrorist plowed through, and once again, over his victims, was there even a moment of hesitation to neutralize the attacker by any Israeli soldier present because of the guilty-of-manslaughter verdict of an Israeli soldier who killed an incapacitated terrorist nine months back? And we may never know if the judge on the case may have tipped the scales even a tiny bit because of how the US and the UN smacked down the Jewish state only days before.
Yes, evil exists and it always will. But those who were charged by their country to fight it did the exact opposite, and so much correction now needs to be done by the incoming administration. I hope the damage can be reversed, and quickly.