We defend what we value


Ozodi Thomas Osuji

      This afternoon, July 31, 2022, 1PM to 5 PM, I went to the United States Air Force biannual air show at the Elmendorf Airforce and Forth Richardson Army joint Bases, JBER, at Anchorage, Alaska.

    On a part of the airfield were parked US air force military assets, including the various fighters (F15, F25 and F35), various jet bombers, various helicopters, AWACs, cargo planes for moving troops and equipment from place to place in the world.

     I moved from one plane to another, going into some of them just to satisfy my “boy curiosity for military matters” (I love the miliary); thereafter, I watched the US Airforce Thunder Birds (F25s fly in various precision formations for about an hour. They put on incredible display of air acrobatic powers (some planes were used to demonstrate bombing runs, explosions on supposed enemy targets simulated with smoke and all made seem real).

      I have seen different air forces and militaries display their prowess and killing powers; I do not believe that there is any nation on planet earth that can take on the US military; even the empty vessel that makes a great deal of noise, Vladimir Putin’s Russia, cannot take on the USA (I know a few things about both countries mutually assured destruction, MAD, with their land based intercontinental ballistic missiles, plane carried missiles and sub-marine carried missiles).

     Russia, with  the GDP of the state of California, simply does not have the resources to take on the USA; if Vladmir Putin has death wish, Thanatos, and makes good on his various threats of going nuclear if other nations interfere in his war in the Ukraine,  well, if the old boy tries it the USA will take Russia out in a few hours  (most people are not aware of  the  level of US Anti-Ballistic Missiles force that can, in midair, destroy incoming Russian missiles). The USA simply possesses formidable military powers.

     As I noted elsewhere, I must have been a general in a previous lifetime because watching military formations and men in action that spell death for them at any moment makes me come alive. No wonder as a teenager I volunteered for military officer training but thereafter changed my mind and opted for academic training.

     Truth must be said, not denied; I talk spirituality but I have always been fascinated by the military since my childhood; I read the great battles of the world, from Greek battles to Roman battles, Persian battles, European battles; I studied Napoleon Bonaparte and appreciate his awareness of how fearful and fickle human beings are; once, the little field marshal stood by a frozen river, surrounded by his generals, and the thought entered his mind “If I tell these bemedaled generals to jump into the river they would do so,” that shows us the hold a great leader has on his people ( Donald Trump has some of that hold on American Conservatives).

    I studied the great generals of the West, certainly from the nineteenth century to the present and can rattle their names off and tell you what they accomplished, their military plans and how they were executed in the field.

    Why did Field Marshal von Paulus allow himself and the German Army under his command to become surrounded by General Zhukov of the Red Army at Stalingrad; that military miscalculation remains a mystery to me because he missed every opportunity to smash the Red Army; compare him to  the Desert Fox, Rommel, and how Rommel taught Generals Alexander, Montgomery, and the overrated General Patton some lessons in planning and execution of battles.

       I am not here talking about military affairs but, instead, pondering the number of resources we devote to military affairs. Do you know how much a US F 35 Jet fighter costs, how about several million dollars; a US Navy’s jet fighters and bombers carrying ship costs billions of dollars to build and operate. Why do we spend these stupendous moneys on the instruments of death?

      Why not devote such money to giving all kids publicly paid education through college and provide all citizens with publicly paid health care, why do we pay more attention to what President Dwight Eisenhower called the military industrial complex than to human welfare?

      We do so because we defend what we find important; we defend what we value; we value our special, separated ego selves and their bodies and devote our entire lives, individually and collectively, to defending them.

       The individual is defending his ego and body 24-7, even when he is not consciously doing so, his immune system is killing microorganisms, germs trying to make a meal of his body; nation-states exist to protect the people that constitute them.

    The primary function of governments, Thomas Hobbes (Leviathan, 1651) tells us, is to protect and defend the people; when a government is unable to protect and defend its people, insecurity ensues; the people will throw such government out and institute a government that will protect them.

     Nigeria has descended into what Hobbes called the State of Nature; criminals and kidnappers, with impunity, kidnap people for money ransom, hold them hostage for months; the Abuja thieves pretending to be a government are no longer able to protect the people; a change of government by any means necessary is in the air (I will not be surprised if there is a military coup at any moment).

     We defend what we value; we value our ego selves in bodies and defend them; that is what the world is for, that we are egos and bodies and defend them.

     We invented a universe of space, time, and matter and use it to house our separated selves; each of us is made to seem vulnerable and defend his special, separated self.

     The world is a place of offense and defense, there is no respite from this grim business of attacking and defending ourselves.

     The earth is the opposite of heaven. In heaven we are all spirits and are in each other; there is no space or gap, and time in heaven; we are one shared self; as such, no one is outside us that can attack and harm us; there is no offense and defense in heaven.

     On earth there is offense and defense.

    In conclusion, all that I need to say is that this afternoon I felt happy because I gratified my military aspect, and did not dwell on my other aspect, metaphysics.

Ozodi Thomas Osuji

July 31, 2022

Note: Dr Osuji will be off social media; his mission there has been accomplished; he moves on to other matters.

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