• Murphy’s Wars

    February 14, 2024
    U.S. Senator Chris Murphy, Public Domain.

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    Hartford Courant Political writer Kevin Rennie delivered a glancing blow to U.S. Senator Chris Murphy in a recent column, “Gov. Ned Lamont, and U.S. Sen. Chris Murphy and Richard Blumenthal stepped into different spotlights last week.”

    Rennie noted, “In his 2020 book, The Violence Inside Us: A Brief History of an Ongoing American Tragedy, Murphy wrote, ‘it is likely that no American ever exported more violence from our shores onto foreign soil than Dwight D. Eisenhower.’ Murphy uses the Second World War Allied invasion of France as a premier example of the ‘violence we export.’

    “In the 80 years since the D-Day invasion, the people of free nations have considered the liberation of France an achievement that deserved unqualified celebration, and always will. Murphy notes that D-Day ‘resulted in a stunning 425,000 troops on both sides being killed or seriously injured.’ That other side, the murderous Nazis, goes unmentioned.”

    Indeed, life, most especially life in war, Shakespeare tells us, is but “but a walking shadow, a poor player/That struts and frets his hour upon the stage/And then is heard no more. It is a tale/Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury/ Signifying nothing.”

    Dwight Eisenhower was a General during World War II, not yet a president.

    When President Franklin Roosevelt at long last formally entered World War II following the Japanese bombing of Pearl Harbor, one of his persistent critics, U.S. Senator from Connecticut’s 4th District Clare Booth Luce, the first woman to represent Connecticut in the U.S. House of Representatives, said of Roosevelt that he had “lied us into war because he was afraid to lead us into war.” Towards the end of the war, Luce issued warnings about the threat of aggression from the Soviet Union. She was also an advocate for the Equal Rights Amendment and the racial integration of the armed forces.

    Murphy is now supporting two U.S. wars, both undeclared by the U.S. Congress.

    The war of aggression against Ukraine prosecuted by President Vladimir Putin of Russia began 2014 and dramatically escalated in 2022 when Russian invaded Ukraine. The Russian invasion was, it is generally agreed, the most significant attack on a European country since World War II.

    According to one Biden biographical account, “By June 2022, Russian troops occupied about 20% of Ukrainian territory. About 8 million Ukrainians had been internally displaced and more than 8.2 million had fled the country by April 2023, creating Europe's largest refugee crisis since World War II. Extensive environmental damage caused by the war, widely described as an ecocide, contributed to food crises worldwide.”

    Biden continues to pummel Ukraine as this is written. A couple of years ago, Connecticut U.S. Senator Dick Blumenthal strongly advised that Biden send U.S. fighter jets to Ukraine, a suggestion smothered in frigid silence.  

    The second war of aggression is that of Iran and its sponsored terrorists units against the State of Israel. Neither Putin nor the Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, Iran's current spiritual leader and its highest authority, have suffered diminishment as a result of their repeated deadly aggressions.

    Throughout history, purely defensive wars that do not punish aggressors hiding behind proxies are doomed to fail. Wars are won by aggressive means, which is why Murphy bothered to mention in his anti-war philippic, The Violence Inside Us, that “a stunning 425,000 troops on both sides” were killed or seriously injured during World War II.

    Murphy has little noted, nor has he long remembered the dead, north and south, at Shiloh and Gettysburg. One soldier’s diary recalls that the battlefield at Shiloh was so littered with dead bodies that he had to step on them to reach the enemy. Of the forces engaged at Gettysburg, nearly one third were casualties, 7,058 were fatalities: 3,155 Union and 3,903 Confederate.

    “Hard going for Murphy last week,” Rennie noted, “but he’ll always have his victory for Houthi terrorists now wreaking havoc on world shipping and firing missiles at American ships. Murphy asked the Biden administration in 2021 to remove the designation of terrorists from the Houthis. It’s good to have friends.”

    It is Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu rather than presidents, senators and military advisors comfortably situated far from the war in Israel who most resembles President Abraham Lincoln. One can only imagine what the present state of the union might look like had Lincoln’s well-meaning advisors prevailed on him, following Gettysburg, to submit to a “two state” solution rather than prosecuting the Civil War to its appointed end. Our bloody Civil War was followed by the restoration of the Union, the end of slavery, the pacification of an insurrectionist South and – not at all incidentally – 159 years of peace and prosperity.

    In war, it matters a great deal who wins and therefore is able to dictate the terms of peace.  Murphy, like Biden, supports a “two state” solution in Israel.

    “The only way to achieve a just and lasting peace between Israelis and Palestinians is a two-state solution. The United States must be crystal clear in our commitment to preserving that path,” said Senator Murphy.

    It may strike students of war other than Murphy that Hamas – both the government of Gaza and a terrorist organization supported by Iran pledged to the destruction of Israel – cannot be one of the two states participating in a future peace between Israel and Gaza.    

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    Don Pesci

    Don Pesci is a political columnist of long standing, about 40 years, who has written for various state newspapers, among them The Journal Inquirer, the Waterbury Republican American, the New London Day, the Litchfield County Times, the Torrington Register Citizen and other Register Citizen papers. He maintains a blog, among the oldest of its kind in Connecticut, which serves as a repository and archive, for his columns; there are approximately 3,000 entrees in Connecticut Commentary: Red Notes From A Blue State, virtually all of them political columns stretching back to 2004. He also appears once a week Wednesdays on 1080 WTIC Newstalk radio with Will Marotti.

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