Editorial Note: Justin Raimondo is on vacation: he’ll return on Friday, September 11. Until then, we’re running this 2004 piece by Raimondo, which does a fairly good job of summarizing Antiwar.com’s foreign policy stance – and which clearly stands the test of time.
In the day-to-day business of tracking the War Party’s machinations, it’s easy to lose sight of the forest for the trees: Powell out, Condi in, AIPAC spies, Chalabi’s lies, Bush and Kerry, Fallujah and Allawi. But what, exactly is the bottom line?
It is this: American imperialism is bad for America. It undermines our republican (small-‘r’) institutions, it renders the effort to roll back Big Government futile, and it corrupts our character as a people. It also kills those it is supposed to be “liberating” – a moral conundrum that none of the advocates of America’s “benevolent hegemony” acknowledge, let alone have an answer to.
War has a degenerative effect on republican institutions, and fatally undermines the rule of law and constitutional government, for the simple reason that war is lawlessness. While we all pretend that there are “rules of war,” and every nation swears to abide by the Geneva Conventions, everybody knows that this is balderdash pure and simple. If you want to see the “rules of war” in operation, take a look at that video of a U.S. Marine blasting the head off a wounded insurgent in a Fallujah mosque. That is the true face of war, which is why no American television station has dared show the full unedited footage.
War centralizes political authority and economic power, investing all power in the state – and assigning obedience, rather than freedom, to the top rank in the social hierarchy of values. This, for libertarians, is the crux of