A CBS News poll released this week found that while a majority said that the United States was less powerful as a world leader than it was 10 years ago (while waist-deep in two wars), roughly the same percentage said that the United States should not take the lead in solving international conflicts.
And, most approve of the sanctions the president has initiated against Russia, but most also don’t believe they’ll be effective. We can’t call both sides of the coin, people. I attribute much of this internal conflict that many Americans feel to battle fatigue, or should I say war fatigue, since “just one-half of 1 percent of Americans served in uniform at any given time during the past decade,”according to the Department of Defense. There are too many of our soldiers still in distant lands, wading through the blood of the fallen or being shipped home broken or maimed or dead. The American ideal of being the world’s lone super power, with infinite influence and strong-arm leverage, is colliding with the reality that we are unable to police the world and that our influence has limits, as well as with our utter distaste for the morass of battle without clear objectives, time limits or exit strategies. The drums of war have been beating on and off in this country for decades; Americans ache for a moment of silence.