Into the New Decade

My Dear Plato:

I realise that you wished to include humour in our correspondence, yet the recent actions of the so-called “President” of this Republic must surely preclude any such levity. Through his reckless action, he has sown the seeds of war which I rather suspect will produce a harvest of violence that will not soon recede in memory. One thinks of past rationalisations such as the Gulf of Tonkin in Vietnam or the weapons of mass destruction supposedly in Iraq, and the doubts begin to arise when told of “imminent attacks” planned by the late Iranian general recently “taken out” by the “flawless” drone attack.

One should remember that the last time the United States assassinated a similar figure was in 1943 when P-38 war planes intercepted Admiral Yamamoto during an inspection tour in the Pacific. Of course the difference between that action (somewhat questionable in itself) and the current killing is that we were then in a declared war with the Empire of Japan. Clearly such is not the case (as yet) with Iran. Questions of international legality thus arise, accompanied of course with other concerns such as morality, Constitutional protocol, or simply the stupidity of such impulsive behavior accompanied with apparently so little concern for consequences.

If ever there was convincing evidence that the current occupant of the Office of President is unfit to hold that position, this latest decision on his part shines forth in any court of reason. My namesake of over two millennia ago struggled to see the Republic of Rome maintained in the face of rising dictatorship. We in this country have at least a chance to succeed where he ultimately failed. We can still vote. It may well be that in the future (assuming we have one), historians will look back at 2020 as the crucial year in determining whether democracy would survive in this land of such promise.

No, my dear Plato, as we enter yet another dark tunnel of conflict and human suffering, it is clear that any attempt at humour would be in the same league of taste as that conveyed the President in so many of his mindless tweets. I do of course wish you and any who grant us the courtesy of reading this brief missive, the very best in the New Year with the sincerest wish that the commonality of the human condition will cause reflection and good will to triumph over the forces of fear and animosity.


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