Farewell. The Flying Pig Has Left The Building.

Steve Hynd, August 16, 2012

After four years on the Typepad site, eight years total blogging, Newshoggers is closing it's doors today. We've been coasting the last year or so, with many of us moving on to bigger projects (Hey, Eric!) or simply running out of blogging enthusiasm, and it's time to give the old flying pig a rest.

We've done okay over those eight years, although never being quite PC enough to gain wider acceptance from the partisan "party right or wrong" crowds. We like to think we moved political conversations a little, on the ever-present wish to rush to war with Iran, on the need for a real Left that isn't licking corporatist Dem boots every cycle, on America's foreign misadventures in Afghanistan and Iraq. We like to think we made a small difference while writing under that flying pig banner. We did pretty good for a bunch with no ties to big-party apparatuses or think tanks.

Those eight years of blogging will still exist. Because we're ending this typepad account, we've been archiving the typepad blog here. And the original blogger archive is still here. There will still be new content from the old 'hoggers crew too. Ron writes for The Moderate Voice, I post at The Agonist and Eric Martin's lucid foreign policy thoughts can be read at Democracy Arsenal.

I'd like to thank all our regular commenters, readers and the other bloggers who regularly linked to our posts over the years to agree or disagree. You all made writing for 'hoggers an amazingly fun and stimulating experience.

Thank you very much.

Note: This is an archive copy of Newshoggers. Most of the pictures are gone but the words are all here. There may be some occasional new content, John may do some posts and Ron will cross post some of his contributions to The Moderate Voice so check back.


Tuesday, August 9, 2011

And it's one, two, three

Commentary By Ron Beasley

And it's one, two, three,
What are we fighting for ?
Don't ask me, I don't give a damn,
Next stop is Vietnam;
And it's five, six, seven,
Open up the pearly gates,
Well there ain't no time to wonder why,
Whoopee! we're all gonna die.

Country Joe and the Fish

Those of us who are old enough to remember Vietnam - yes that includes me, although I was never in Vietnam I was in the military from 1968 to 1971, can easily replace Vietnam with Afghanistan in the lyrics above. 

James Joyner asks: Should we Honor Fallen SEALs by Questioning Their Mission?  He quotes our friend Joshua Foust who says this:

The real scandal in Afghanistan isn�t that Americans are getting killed. The real scandal is that we don�t know why we�re there. President Obama�s goal of disrupting, dismantling and defeating Al Qaeda has been largely accomplished. The Afghan government has a sufficiently large enough military to prevent a total Taliban takeover, and with a political reconciliation there is every likelihood that Al Qaeda will be denied access to Afghanistan.

Tragic as the loss of those soldiers is, without a clear strategy articulated by our leadership, it�s difficult to say what grander purpose they served. Rescuing other troops is a noble mission, and those that died in service to this mission all deserve our profound thanks. But if the war they�re fighting has no purpose and no definable end state, we should be questioning why they have to perform such heroic acts in the first place.

We should � we must � mourn the dead. But after we mourn, we should also ask why they�re being asked to sacrifice so much for a war that�s being propelled solely by inertia. The war is as incomprehensible post-crash as it was pre-crash. Despite our grief at this loss, our questions about why we�re there remain the same.

What Joshua is saying is we have accomplished  the mission so why are we still there?  For an answer we turn again to Country Joe:

Come on Wall Street, don't be slow,
Why man, this is war au-go-go
There's plenty good money to be made
By supplying the Army with the tools of its trade,
But just hope and pray that if they drop the bomb,
They drop it on the Viet Cong.

Different decade, different enemy but same purpose - the military industrial complex is making a lot of money.  We really should have listened to this guy:

I agree with James Joyner:

It�s an age-old cliche that we should honor the fallen by ensuring that the didn�t die in vain. To the extent that this motivates their comrades, it�s a great part of the warrior code. But if the fight is unwinnable�or has been as close to won as we�re likely to get for years�it�s also a recipe for getting more good men killed.

So it's not just us dirty f**king hippies anymore.

1 comment:

  1. Great, Ron.
    And for kids who don't know what you're talking about here's the link.