Americans Are 'Most Warlike People' in World, Bill Press Sneers
And they wonder why we sometimes question whether they love America.
On his liberal radio show yesterday, Bill Press was disparaging Christians as hypocrites when he expanded his criticism to Americans as a whole (audio) --
PRESS: If 80 percent of Americans are such godly people, if we as a nation are one nation under God, why are we still practicing the death penalty, hmm? Why are we still building nuclear weapons just to, for massive kills of innocent people around the world? Why are we so gung ho on war? We're in two wars now and people are talking about starting a third one. You know, we're the most warlike people, I think, on the planet when you look at the wars that we started, the only people to have dropped the nuclear bomb. Why do we tolerate discrimination in this country to such an extent? Discrimination still against people of color, discrimination against gays and lesbians, discrimination against women, discrimination against Muslims, discrimination against Arabs, all of which we tolerate and a lot of it which goes on in the name of God!
Ah, the sensitive liberal male, brimming with empathy, mouthing lines he learned in college to bed co-eds and still spouting the same drivel several decades later.
Two of Press's claims stand out -- Americans as "the most warlike people" in the world and "the only people to have dropped the nuclear bomb," as if this were inherently shameful.
True, the United States is the only nation to have used nuclear weapons in warfare, albeit to bring an abrupt end to the bloodiest, most destructive conflict in history, one started, not incidentally, by the enemies we fought.
But if the second part of Press's claim is true, the "most warlike people" part of it, wouldn't logic dictate that the United States would have used nuclear weapons since then?
Quite the contrary. Even when the United States had a monopoly on nuclear weaponry for four years after the end of World War II, we did not use them to establish global hegemony or push the Soviets out of Eastern Europe.
Even while fighting wars in Korea and Vietnam, at a cost of tens of thousands of American lives, nuclear weapons were never used, nor were they deployed in two wars against Iraq.
Even when Osama bin Laden was thought holed up in sparsely populated Tora Bora, George W. Bush did not resort to using nuclear weapons that surely would have eradicated more than a few jihadists in the mountains of Afghanistan.
As usual when liberals criticize the atomic bombings of Japan, no mention is made of the president who gave the order -- Harry Truman, a machine Democrat out of Missouri and New Deal true believer if ever there was one.
The A-bomb dropped on Hiroshima was delivered to the island of Tinian by the USS Indianapolis, which was sunk by a Japanese submarine several days later. Nearly 900 men perished, from the sinking itself, shark attacks and exposure. It remains to this day the worst loss of life at sea for the Navy in its history. The Indianapolis's death toll is exceeded by only one other American warship -- the battleship Arizona, destroyed within minutes of the surprise attack on Pearl Harbor.
Liberals who assail our use of nuclear weapons also invariably neglect to mention that thousands of civilians were dying every month as a result of Japanese occupation of much of Asia. The well-documented barbarity of the Japanese toward non-combatants was exceeded only by that of their Axis ally, the Nazis.
In her devastating 2010 best-seller, "Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience, and Redemption," Laura Hillenbrand describes the cruel ordeals suffered by Louis Zamperini, an elite athlete who ran in the Berlin Olympics, became an airman when he was drafted before Pearl Harbor, and was taken captive after his B-24 bomber crashed in the Pacific during a search flight.
In the summer of 1945, the Japanese military ordered that thousands of Allied prisoners of war were to be executed and a date was scheduled for the killings, Hillenbrand wrote --
If a massively destructive air war would not win surrender, invasion seemed the only possibility. POWs all over the country were noticing worrisome signs. They saw women holding sharpened sticks, practicing lunges at stacks of rice straw, and small children being lined up in front of schools, handed wooden mock guns, and drilled. Japan, whose people deemed surrender shameful, appeared to be preparing to fight to the last man, woman or child.
... At Naoetsu (POW camp) that summer, camp officials began speaking of their concern that the POWs could be injured in air raids. For this reason, the officials said, the prisoners were soon going to be taken into the mountains, where they'd be safe. Away from their officers, the guards told a different story, telling the POWs that the Army had issued orders to kill them all in August. This might be dismissed as a lie, but that July, a civilian worker known for his sympathy for POWs warned a prisoner that an execution date had been set. The date he gave was the same as one that had reportedly been mentioned to prisoners in at least two other camps.
All of the Naoetsu POWs, the civilian said, would be killed on August 22.
Instead, Japan surrendered on Aug. 14, less than a week after the second atom bomb was dropped on Nagasaki.
In lieu of wielding nuclear weapons, the difficult work of prevailing against our enemies must be done by warriors -- and Press is contemptuous of them too. Listen here how he maligns the cadets in the audience at the Virginia Military Institute on Monday for a foreign policy speech by Mitt Romney --
Whenever Republicans want to appear tough, right, and they want to give a foreign policy speech where they say, we're just gonna run over anybody who looks, that we don't like basically, anywhere on the planet, they always go to some military school, usually, Peter, down in South Carolina, this happened to be in Virginia, because they know they're going to get a willing audience of little cadets in their uniforms who are gonna say, we're gonna bomb, we're gonna, I don't know, we're gonna bomb Cape Town, yah! Then we're gonna bomb Paris, yah! I mean, you know, so anyhow, they got that crowd. And he got the reception he wanted.
But as can be seen in C-SPAN's coverage, the VMI cadets clapped enthusiastically and gave Romney a standing ovation before and after his remarks -- and listened respectively throughout his 20-minute speech, not once erupting in the bloodlust alleged by Press, who belittles the cadets as warmongers.
My second favorite scene in "A Few Good Men," after the climactic courtroom exchange between Tom Cruise's Lt. Kaffee and Jack Nicholson's Col. Jessep, takes place earlier in the film, with Caffey's co-counsels, JoAnne Galloway (Demi Moore) and Sam Weinberg (Kevin Pollack), alone in court during a break in the proceedings.
Weinberg sees the two Marines they are defending on charges of murder as bullies and no longer hides his disdain. "Why do you like them so much?" he asks Galloway. " 'Cause they stand on a wall," she answers, "and they say nothing's going to hurt you tonight, not on my watch." Aaron Sorkin never wrote a better line.
They stand on that wall for you too, Bill Press. And it is you, not them, worthy of contempt.