I speak of course of John McCain. He was nicknamed by the establishment as a maverick because he agreed with the worst aspects of both the Democrats and Republicans. That this tended to represent the establishment view on everything is what makes the nickname so absurd. Simply being a partisan hack would be bad enough, but breaking with your party on the rare occasion when they’re actually right about something is a new level of evil and/or stupidity.
The last time McCain opposed a US military intervention was 1982 when he correctly criticized Reagan’s troop buildup in Lebanon. Since then he has continued to criticize every US intervention, but his issue has always been that the Empire didn’t send enough troops, spend enough money, bomb enough buildings, kill enough people. Never once, did this “maverick” take a step back and question why a local conflict in some far away, little understood corner of the world was any of his or the US State’s business.
McCain died despised by the majority of his own party’s base. That makes me think there may some small shred of hope for the GOP in the coming years. But despite all this, the average “conservative” in the US still has to spout the usual platitudes about him being a war hero. This is complete rubbish.
What was heroic about volunteering for a military that had been engaged in the indiscriminate killing of civilians since at least 1942 (McCain entered the Naval Academy in 1958)?
What was heroic about bombing North Vietnam, with the full knowledge that helpless women and children were dying as a result, when they posed no threat to the United States?
What was heroic about being shot down?
What was heroic about being captured?
Ask yourself this. If a foreign military was bombing your town, regardless of whether there was a Military base nearby or not, and one of their pilots crashed into your backyard, how would you react?
I know many otherwise honorable people served in Vietnam and other US Wars. I know many were drafted and had very little choice in the matter. But participation in an unjust war is not in itself heroic. Being captured or tortured in the process doesn’t automatically make you a hero either.
And John McCain was not otherwise honorable. He supported every unjust war that occurred during his lifetime and it wasn’t just lip service like some suburban soccer mom sporting a Support the Troops bumper sticker. He was in a position to influence the US State’s War Machine and he used that influence for evil.
Let’s hope his death is the end of a very bad, violent, destructive era.