Facial Recognition

We can read books. Some of us have studied history, relatively recent history, enough to recognize recurring patterns. But apparently we still have a blind spot for tyrants.

We have one now. He has helped himself to inflicting misery on people who have not asked for it, who do not deserve it, and who are the unfortunate fall guys in this tyrant’s real plan—destroying the U.S. and all who prefer democracy to authoritarianism or kleptocracy, or whatever buzz words are currently in vogue.

It’s remarkable how someone can become possessed of such singular animosity and drive. Putin has played the long game, stayed focused and motivated and angry. He must really hate us here in America. He’s counting on us being lazy and soft and having no appetite for a fight. And he may be right, but perhaps not for the reasons he thinks. What can happen when we take the time to read our history is that lessons are learned, an abhorrence of war takes hold. A recognition dawns that war exacts too high a cost to keep thinking of it as a viable option.

Sadly, the hawks on all sides will most likely win the day. This may be where we still are.

But forcing a minority view on the masses will eventually backfire, even if it takes a while and great suffering unfolds in the interim. Putin’s motives are a substantial distance from honorable. He needs to understand that there is a price to be paid for avenging personal grudges and fossilized visions at the expense of senseless chaos and upheaval, and murder.

The poison has taken hold in him. He is too far gone now. Eventually he will be stopped, and the questions become when and how, and who.

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