Libya President Obama has decided we should intervene in Libya and has authorized our dropping bombs on military installations as well as other military targets. He says it is to support the people and their right to freedom and to promote democarcy there. Many of us are mystified by his decision. We have now involved ourselves militarily in one more country when history doesn't support the bombing and cost is bankruptingly high. We are still mired in military action in Afghanistan and Iraq. Both interventions have now gone on for years with no end in sight, yet neither country is free nor a democracy. On top of that we are near bankruptcy over the cost of maintaining those military operations while our country is economically suffering. For a thought provoking viewpoint about the cost of our wars see:

In addition, to  the enormous cost there is the issue of president Obama having ordered the air strikes without even consulting Congress. Here is what Senator Obama had to say about that when he was a candidate for office:

The President does not have power under the Constitution to unilaterally authorize a military attack in a situation that does not involve stopping an actual or imminent threat to the nation.

As Commander-in-Chief, the President does have a duty to protect and defend the United States. In instances of self-defense, the President would be within his constitutional authority to act before advising Congress or seeking its consent. History has shown us time and again, however, that military action is most successful when it is authorized and supported by the Legislative branch. It is always preferable to have the informed consent of Congress prior to any military action.

But, more importantly, what's our track record where we have bombed a country in order to bring it democracy? Well here's a list of the countries that the U.S. has bombed since the end of World War II, not including Libya, compiled by historian William Blum:

China: 1945-46
Korea: 1950-53
China: 1950-53
Guatemala: 1954
Indonesia: 1958
Cuba: 1959-60
Guatemala: 1960
Congo: 1964
Peru: 1965
Laos: 1964-73
Vietnam: 1961-73
Cambodia: 1969-70
Guatemala: 1967-69
Grenada: 1983
Libya: 1986
El Salvador: 1980s
Nicaragua: 1980s
Panama: 1989
Iraq: 1991-99
Sudan: 1998
Afghanistan: 1998 + 2001
Yugoslavia: 1999

QUESTION: In how many of these instances did a democratic government, respectful of human rights, occur as a direct result? Choose one of
the following:

(a) 0
(b) zero
(c) none

If you picked (a) or (b) or (c) you passed the test


  1. At first, please forgive my poor English but your article makes me laugh so I would like to share with you something.

    My feelings about mass a while back were nearly the same as yours. I went to church because my mum said so and I was so afraid of mortal sin. I didn’t even feel “The Eucharistic portion of the service is the only part that is meaningful for me”. The only thing that I can share with you here is try to shift your focus on Jesus, not on the mass itself. Make a conversation with Him, just say whatever is on your mind. Focus on His love, He knows that He is going to be torture, be nailed to the cross and what He does? He prepares the Disciples for His departure!

    * Showing the value of humility by washing the feet of the Apostles, “No longer do I call you servants, …. but I have called you friends”.

    * promise to be present in the Eucharist, and be with those who partake in it, as He was with the disciples at the Last Supper. Why? Because “I am the bread of life. He who comes to me will never go hungry.” Centuries after centuries, we never go hungry for the food for our souls.

    I only give you a few points that have helped me to celebrate the mass without feeling “It is an endurance contest”. You will need to work out the rest. 🙂

    If I know that I am going to die tomorrow (of a stroke or a heart attack, not torture!). I might cry unconsolable or making people around me feel miserable or… The Lord is different, He is full of love and so attentive to people around Him (including all of us two millenniums later) to His last minutes on the cross!

    Don’t focus on the priest, the choir…

    If you try all of these for a while and nothing works, then turn up to mass early, on your knees and ask God for help! This is what I always do. 🙂

    Another point about “The prayers are canned prayers”. Well, you do make me laugh!

    I am not sure what you have over there but at my church, the prayers are always about serious problems have happened during the week locally and internationally.

    I just worked out “Why?” recently myself and I will share with you by using a scenario (my English is poor)

    Pretend that I just lost a loved one, feel like my heart is ripped out off my chest, wishing that I were dead so I don’t have to suffer this unbearable pain…

    I go to church and in the prayer, we all pray:
    * for people who are facing the starvation somewhere in the world as a few hundred thousand people already died.
    * for people who are living in disaster zones (earthquake, tsunami, war)

    I pause for a little while wondering
    * a few hundred thousand people ended up in a mass grave. My loved one had a beautiful burial service, hundreds of people came to offer condolences
    * I am not a sole survivor as most of the people in the disaster zone. I have my family, friends to lean on.
    * I have a clean bed to sleep in, food on the table, clothes to keep me warm… the people in the disaster zone have not.

    Right then, I might have the strength, the courage to say “Yes Lord, Your will be done and I love You!”

    This is a scenario to help you understand my English. I truly don’t know what I’ll do if my loved one die. I pray that someone will remind me this scenario so I will not nail Jesus to the cross myself. 😉

    It doesn’t matter where we are on the earth, we are all God’s children and if we look hard enough we will feel blessed in any situation.

    God bless

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