National outrage over President Trump’s policy of separating immigrant children from their parents as a way to deter illegal immigration into the United States has forced the president to abandon the policy. The outrage came from all sides of the political spectrum, especially from the left, and from the mainstream media.
Trump’s policy is obviously cruel and brutal, given that it uses children as pawns to achieve a political end. No matter how much psychological damage is inflicted on children owing to the fear that comes with forced separation, the idea is that such emotional damage is worth it given the aim of preventing or discouraging illegal immigration to the United States.
What’s strange, however, is that while there has been mass outrage over Trump’s separation policy, there is virtually no outrage over the U.S. government’s policy of killing children as a way to achieve the political goal of regime change in foreign countries.
Consider, for example, the brutal system of U.S. sanctions on Iraq, which the Clinton administration enforced during the 1990s. Year after year, it contributed to the deaths of tens of thousands of Iraqi children, especially since the sanctions prevented Iraq from repairing the water-and-sewage treatment plants that the Pentagon had intentionally bombed during the Persian Gulf War.
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By now Randolph Bourne's observation that "war is the health of the state" ought to be such a cliche that it would hardly need to be said. And yet, it must be said -- often -- because many still haven't gotten the word. If the state is the adversary of liberty, as it...