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Saturday, December 7, 2013

Pearl Harbor lesson

Pearl Harbor December 7, 1941 and the lesson not learned.

The following offered with much respect to all of my brothers and sisters in arms who have served and those serving now.

An act of war was carried out against the United States on this date and the few survivors remaining and their descendants still mark it with remembrances and tributes. That date has taken on a kind of "holy" day status and to not remember it properly is a sin of some kind. Don't get me wrong; I do believe that it is fitting that the men and women who served their country be recognized.

We were on the receiving end of an attack that targeted military objectives like warships and airfields. It was bad, but it carried with it a military logic that later on made it more understandable in a cold historical way. If it had been carried out by U.S. forces against a Japanese city it would have been called a courageous, brilliant, and well executed plan.

Since the attack was against our territory it was/is viewed as a dishonorable, sneaky, and reprehensible act of an over-reaching aggressive nation. Remember also that the only reason that the attack happened before war was officially declared, was the bumbling incompetency of politicians on both sides.

There was an extremely important lesson in the bombing of Pearl Harbor that has not been learned by our leaders or taught to our children. That lesson is simple: If you randomly kill the citizens of any country, the survivors will hate you for generations, if not forever.

Since Pearl Harbor the United States of America has undertaken an ever expanding policy of bombing opponents into "submission." Can you imagine the hatred and vengeance that would have arisen if schools, hospitals, or downtown Honolulu had been targeted? Don't waste your breath saying that we would never do that, because I have walked through the rubble personally. Talk to any Iraq War veteran about the destruction they saw.

I have heard the first hand stories with my own ears from the mouths of those who lived through the events of World War Two. Their hatred of the Japanese still burns brightly in their hearts. I have experienced the chaos personally from Vietnam to Beirut and heard the dialogue of both sides from Bosnia to Afghanistan.

The truth is still the same: when you rain death on people you do not instill fear or humble them into submission, you make generations of people who will hate you until their dying breath. The only winners are the people who make the weapons and munitions used to kill "other people's children."

We need to learn the lesson of Pearl Harbor and stop making new enemies. Remember how America felt when they heard the news about death reaching their shores: the heartbreak, the frustration, and then anger. Everyone immediately ran to the recruitment office to sign up to fight.

If you want to remember Pearl Harbor, remember how that event wrecked lives and don't allow that to be passed on. Being strong isn't about blowing people up, it is about solving problems.

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