The past weeks were fascinating. There's an 'opportunity' for a war, and most voices suddenly sound anti-war. Even infamous warmongers had their anti-war moment and for the first time ever disliked an 'opportunity' to send troops in harm's way. That is, until their fetish got the better of them and they still demanded some involvement with guns.

So there's a conflict in which the potential opponent would not be some inept Arab military and there was no orchestrated multi-month propaganda campaign, much less there's oil in any substantial quantities involved. 
And suddenly there are pacifists, reasonable adults, everywhere.

Warmongers do no cost-benefit calculations, so the only explanation I have for this kind of behaviour is that still too many people are in a gaming mode when thinking about war and peace. Some wars promise to be 'fun', others not so much.

"News" shows are actually entertainment shows pretending to deliver information.
Plane is missing! - plane crashed there in the sea! - no it flew that direction! - no, wreck pieces found there! - no it flew the other direction after all! - people on some island saw an aircraft flying low! - information content: about zero, but it's apparently attractive to enough people to sustain the racket.

One shouldn't be surprised by how some distant war is just another entertainment project to the masses, distracting them from few people enriching themselves on it or having fun with their fetish of power fantasies.
Wars used to be in great part the games of a ruling elite and a justification for a warrior caste. Nowadays we're more democratic, and cabinet wars are largely gone. Today's governments don't need majority support for a war, but at least a critical mass of a minority - and especially majority support or tolerance in the media.

Now it just happens that wars are a story that keeps giving to media, like a plane crash every week. Horrible, but they do love it. And too man people cannot resist the attraction and keep being useful idiots, contributing to the critical mass of war supporters once the warmongers gear up.
Well, unless the potential war is no fun even to warmongers.



  1. Well, the Crimean conflict has the prospect of a nasty old school war. It features a well established peer enemy, and even has locations known from history of warfare (even americans know WW2 was fought in foreign nations), so it's no surprise it takes the haws a bit of a run to get their courage up.

    But on the other hand Putin really is so WELL suited for being a villain, being ex-kgb, authoritative, corrupt AND russian! You cannot expect the american talking heads to keep away from that juicy combination for long, even if it is a nuclear power they rave against. And in their defense, they are probably being humbler than the Russian tv.

  2. It needs a show of peace in order to prepare for an "inevitable" nasty war. The issue is not yet over.

  3. FWIW, from Mark ames in 2013 (original link is behind a paywall) :



    Assuming the 2008 Cheney intent to actually try and stop the Russians by force (in that scenario thanksfully squashed by cooler heads) was true, I can't help but to think that some fragile minds are *actually* believing their own propaganda... If your worldview is that your armed forces are the "best trained ever", "most powerful fighting force in the History of the world", etc, etc..., then, you surely have no much qualms about putting that magnificent tool to use...
    In that case, I can almost imagine the army higher ups going something like "Are you crazy? This is something we only tell to the civilians, and to the congress, for our budget!!!"