Preserving the Lamps of Liberty in our Lifetime

by Robert Arvay, Contributing Writer

When we look back on history, we find that from the very beginning of our republic, there have been intense controversies. These controversies were of the utmost consequence. Should there be a strong central government, or should the states dominate? Should slavery be legal or forbidden? Have the states a right to secede? Should we have a president or a king? The list is long, and continues to this day.

The resolutions of these controversies defined the nation. We were to have a weak central government, with the states dominating. Slavery is to be forbidden. We have no king.

Unfortunately, not all the controversies were resolved for the better. Those also define us. The New Deal, for example, established an ever stronger central government, one that the Founders warned us against. While its goals were worthy, the methods used have been seriously harmful. They led to an entitlement mentality and an ever more progressive welfare state in which the fruits of one person’s labor are confiscated and handed over to another person, one who labors not.

While some see the long term trend of the United States as being ever more liberating, others see it as ever more collectivist. While some lament the fact that Americans are increasingly uneducated, others lament that our youth are ever more mis–educated, propagandized and deceived by a politicized system of education.

Not only are we failing to solve serious problems such as crime, we are all but forbidden to even discuss the issue if it offends anyone. For example, it is no secret that while black people comprise about twenty percent of our citizenry, fifty percent of the felonies are committed by them. Ninety percent (or thereabouts) of black citizens who are murdered, are murdered by black people. Just try discussing that with any random sampling of voters, but take care to shield yourself from accusations of racism. The issue itself will be drowned out in the tirade of anger from the left, and the problem continues.

The teacher unions and their political cronies have hijacked our schools, victimizing inner city black students, despite the fact that per student spending on them— in poorly performing schools— by the government— is far greater than the spending in many better performing schools, both public and private. Yet the demand is always for more money and less accountability.

Mysteriously, black families continue to support the very same politicians whose destructive rampage in their children’s lives continues. Maybe it’s not so mysterious, when one considers the schools they attended.

Every generation has felt that the republic was in danger of falling. They were right. Every generation has a duty to uphold the Constitution or— quite literally— to die trying. Seas of white crosses in military cemeteries testify to that fact. Every citizen is responsible for doing his part, whatever the cost.

Sadly, too few Americans have the slightest clue as to the heavy price of the freedoms they enjoy. Worse yet, too few are willing to make even the slightest sacrifice to preserve that freedom for themselves and their posterity.

Once again, the Republic is in danger of collapsing into rubble. Once again, to paraphrase British Foreign Secretary Sir Edward Grey (1862 – 1933), the lights of liberty may be snuffed out, not to be relit in our lifetimes.

My hope is that a hundred years from now, Americans will still be lamenting that the republic is about to fall— because that will mean that it didn’t.

How Not to Understand International Economics (it’s easy)

by Robert Arvay, Contributing Writer

I used to be so naïve that I actually thought that economics is understandable, at least by economists. Silly me. A simple reading of a newspaper is all it takes to set anyone straight on this matter.

Take the European union, for example. You no doubt have read that Greece has been borrowing kazillions of euros from Germany and other European countries. You no doubt have read that Germany wants some assurance that some day it might get at least some of that money back. Silly Germans.

In order to get that assurance, the Germans have asked the Greeks to stop spending zillions of Euros on exorbitant salaries for its government workers, to raise taxes to help pay off the debt, and in short, to stop throwing money around like drunken sailors (and please believe me when I say that I have the utmost respect for drunken sailors, because after all, they spend their own money, not Germany’s).

Here is an unofficial wording, slightly edited, of the Greek position on the matter.

Dear Germans: How dare you try to tell us what to do with your money? After all, it is your money, not ours. We don’t tell you what to do with our money that we never lend to you. So stop telling us what to do with the money you lend us. Stay out of your business, or else we will threaten not to pay you back— which of course, we can never do anyway. So there, take that, you big bad lenders of kazillions of Euros that we desperately need to delay our economic collapse for a few more days, after which we can never pay you back.

There. Now you understand that there is no understanding of economics.

You’re welcome.

Death of a Republic

by Robert Arvay, Contributing Writer

Politics is often nothing more than a squabble. Sadly, this is what the Republican Party has become.

Were you and I, along with a few of our closest friends, to start up a new corporation, we would quickly do one of two things. We would find a way to organize ourselves for a common purpose, or else, we would self-destruct as a corporation.

Organizing ourselves would require that we select from among ourselves a leader, and also, a set of guiding principles by which the corporation is governed.

Selecting a leader might become contentious, and once again, we would either select the best leader or self-destruct.

Let’s say a particular number of us all wish to be the CEO, the chief executive officer, the leader. The competition could be very positive, or it could be destructive. We could each state our abilities, our vision and our plan, and let the other members decide who best meets the needs of the corporation. Or else, each of us could attempt to demean the others, to recruit members to our particular faction, and do intra-corporate battle, while watching the corporation degenerate into a squabble.

It is discouraging to see the latter take place in the party which we hoped would implement conservative policies to restore constitutional government.

Ronald Reagan’s principle of, never speak ill of a fellow Republican, has been discarded, much to the delight of the Democrat Party.

Farewell, America. Alas, we knew ye well.

Hashtag Rearm Our Service Members

by Nadra Enzi (aka Cap Black), Contributing Writer

I’m not one to think a hashtag campaign on Twitter alone will change molecule-deep anti-gun mania among policy makers. I also know I’m not alone in feeling that our troops on the home front shouldn’t have to hold their hands up when attacked because they’ve been disarmed by a presidential executive order.

I do think, in addition to letters, media pressure and putting the issue before Congress and presidential candidates, twitter campaigns can change anti-gun policies which now made it easier to murder four US Marine Corps reservists during a recent terrorist attack in Chattanooga, Tennessee.

There’s a reason why the military is called, the armed services.

It is with an angry spirit that I add my modest contribution to a flurry of hash tags demanding an end to disarming troops on the home front.

It reads, #rearmourservicemembers, and it’s tragic that we even have to demand this common sense measure!

Nadra Enzi aka Cap Black is a free security activist for society who feels strangers are worth protecting for FREE!

Creator, #Cap Black Is Here! blog
http://www.capblackishere.blogspot.com

Bush VS Obama Part 6: The Score

by Sean A. LangleyGuest Contributor

Military Action:
Massive victory for Bush.

Bush had morally questionable reasons and even actions but ultimately stayed within the realm of the law and Constutition.
Obama ended the war in Iraq legally but controversially with adverse consequences to the Middle East and committed two major violations of the Constitution, one of which did bring the end the leader of the Taliban, the other gave power to the Taliban itself.

Immigration Policy:
Legal Victory for Bush

Bush made an attempt to legalize illegal immigrants attaining work rights but followed legal policy to try and make it a law and failed. He voiced his disapproval but ultimately accepted it.
Obama made an action that was illegal on Constitutional and Federal laws, one that has been rejected and is legal grounds for impeachment.

Employment: Massive Victory for BUSH

Bush made more than a few mistakes towards the end, but ultimately his entire two terms have been superior to Obama.
Obama took many immediate actions, invested hundreds of billions of dollars, had full support of Congress but ultimately has yet to outdo Bush for even a single full year.

Energy: Minor victory for Obama

Bush drastically increased the original usage of clean energy. However, Obama surpassed Bush in that aspect by 17%.

Debt: Massive Victory for Bush

Bush came out at about $4billion added debt after both terms. Obama has more than doubled that amount before his second term has even ended.

Environment:Minor victory for Obama

Neither President really different much for the Environment, but Obama has shown more concern and taken more action than Bush did.

That’s the bottom line of it all. Those facts are not disputable, they are scientific, mathematical and historical. Which means they are not going to be debated or changed. So when you remember that Obama is the 4th lowest approved President in the U.S. History and that Bush is liked more than Obama, it’s not about skin color. It’s about intellect and integrity. You can like Obama all you want.

You can’t say he was a better President.

I’m Sean and those are the stone, cold hard facts.

Bush VS Obama, Part 5: Employment, Energy and Environment

by Sean A. LangleyGuest Contributor

Employment
First, we look at this graph which is
found at this website:
http://data.bls.gov/pdq/SurveyOutputServlet?request_action=wh&graph_name=LN_cpsbref3

That website is the official website for the United States Department of Labor and is from the Bureau of Labor Statistics section. That means it’s non-negotiable as to it’s accuracy because it’s from the FEDERAL GOVERNMENT. And if you didn’t know, the federal government largely answers to Congress and the President.

George W. Bush was President from Jan. of 2001 to Jan. 2009 and Barrack Obama was President from later in Jan. 2009 to current time. There’s no question that unemployment sky-rocketed in Bush’s final year. However, in Obama’s first month of his first year, he signed into effect the AARA.

The ARRA was designed to respond to the Great Recession, the primary objective for ARRA was to save and create jobs almost immediately. Literally hundreds of billions of dollars were invested into that. Unemployment skyrocketed even further, despite the fact that AARA did create more jobs. However, creating jobs and actual jobs employed is not the same and if jobs are unattainable by the majority or unable to support the majority, they won’t get filled. Random job creation does not equate solid employment improvement.

There was a flux with Bush, but for the majority of his Presidency, he maintained unemployment at a low rate of under 6% until the last year (minus a short rise ‘03). In Barack Obama’s Presidency, he has only just recently managed to have it under 6% in the last half of ‘14, even after hundreds of billions into his act. It was actually higher and maintained higher than Bush’s highest point of unemployment for the majority of Obama’s first entire term as President.

Like it or not, blame it on what you want, Bush wins HEAVILY in the unemployment level as President.

Energy

As part of the AARA mentioned above in Employment, President Obama invested $27.2 billion in clean energy technologies, from transportation to personal use. He originally intended to invest in nuclear energy, but after the 2011 earthquake and tsunami that occurred in Japan that destroyed a lot of homes (and nuclear power plants), Congress had doubts about that.

The amount of electricity generated from wind and solar power has now increased 157 percent since the year before Obama took office, according to the latest figures from the U.S. Energy Information Administration. Wind and solar still account for only a small fraction of all electricity, but the share has more than doubled.

Wind and solar power increased 282 percent during Bush’s last four years in office, so the upward trend does predate Obama’s term. But the subsidies provided in Obama’s 2009 stimulus package helped keep the trend going (otherwise, he was just “riding the high from the good ol’ Bush years”).

When it comes to gas used per mile, according to the University of Michigan’s Transportation Research Institute, the average EPA city/highway sticker mileage of light duty vehicles sold in March was 24.6 miles per gallon. That’s a record. And it’s 17 percent better than the 21.0 mpg for vehicles sold in January 2009, when Obama first took office.

Bush wasn’t without benefit in the energy department, but when it comes to clean energy and usage of gasoline per mile has gone up under Obama’s AARA.

Like it or not, Obama beats Bush in the Energy department.

Environment

In May 2001, Bush signed an executive order to create an inter-agency task force to streamline energy projects, and later signed two other executive orders to tackle environmental issues. These were critical in focusing the government on more efforts on actual environmental change.

Unfortunately, to be blunt, while it opened the door, Bush never really stepped into it very much. He believed in Global Warming but was not convinced it was man-made, legitimate argument as science today still hasn’t been able to prove if it’s more due to technological issues or naturally occuring. However, Bush never did anything to reduce carbon emissions or anything to really help with global warming.

Bush tried to put into effect the the Clear Skies Act of 2003, aimed at amending the Clean Air Act to reduce air pollution through the use of emissions trading programs but many experts said that it would do more harm than any good, thus forth it was shot down by Congress.

Bush also opposed the Kyoto Protocol, an amendment to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change which seeks to impose mandatory targets for reducing greenhouse gas emissions, citing that the treaty exempted 80 percent of the world’s population and would have cost tens of billions of dollars per year. The Senate had voted 95–0 in 1997 on a resolution expressing its disapproval of the protocol.

So it’s not that Bush didn’t do anything, only that he didn’t do very much in the Environment area.

President Obama has been extensively concerned with the issue of Global Warming and has largely kept an opinion of it being mostly due to man-made devices, hence his focus on cleaner energy. His vast improvements in clean energy helped out considerably but controversy arose with the Keystone Pipeline issue. Obama originally rejected it, saying that it would cause an increase in carbon pollution or greenhouse gases.

His rejection was factual, thus the US Department of State Bureau of Oceans and International Environmental and Scientific Affairs described changes to the original proposals including the shortening of the pipeline to lessen any impact. However, the EPA and other individuals did point out the increased possibility for massive oil spillsthat could harm habitats and environments.

In the end, Obama remained against it. He also called against drilling Antartica for petroleum, not wanting to damange the environment there, also hoping to increase the chances of more clean energy sources being used.

Like it or not, Obama actually beats Bush in the Environment area.

In summation, Part 6: The Score

Bush VS Obama, Part 4: The Economy

by Sean A. LangleyGuest Contributor

If you thought that the previous stuff was long-winded before, let’s just say I’m shortening Economy largely to results because so many factors are taken into account and even then many of them are difficult to factor in. So in that case, we’re going to look at Debt, Energy, but Environment and Employment.

First, we look at the National Debt Clock, found at the U.S. Treasury website at http://www.treasurydirect.gov/NP/debt/current ).

The U.S. Debt from 2001 was $5,728,739,508,558.96, when Bush first took office in January, and was $7,596,142,802,424.14 the night before he retook office in January of 2005. Many people claim he was just “riding the high from the good ol’ Clinton years”, but when he left office, the U.S. Debt was only $10,699,804,864,612.13. In his entire two terms, the most he ever did was barely $4 million, during two war efforts.

Obama took office in January of 2009 with that exact amount of debt, promising he’d get us out of debt within the 1st term (so clearly he doesn’t believe that either). However, the night before he was re-elected, the U.S. debt had climbed to $15,222,940,045,451.09. Currently, the U.S. Debt has reached up to $18,252,007,401,259.20 and still rising without any signs of slowing down.

Gas prices skyrocketed under Bush and did not lower under Obama until recently, but that was proven to be a side effect of the Middle East selling it at extremely cheaper prices and that the global economy is weakening it’s expectations of gasoline for usage. The gas price increase is largely considered to be a result of the war efforts and tax cuts during Bush’s terms. Under Obama, it hasn’t changed until recently and that was mainly due to Europe and Middle East making changes, not any plans or actions taken by the Obama administration.

Bush is responsible for the increase gas prices. And while Obama did nothing to help it, he did nothing to make it worse either. However, the drastic change in U.S. Debt gives this one another Bush win.

Bush VS Obama, Part 3: Immigration Policy:

by Sean A. Langley, Guest Contributor

The issue of illegal immigrants, especially the vast majority of them from Mexico, has been an issue for years. Both Presidents have committed pretty questionable acts during their terms, so neither are guiltless. Observe.

Nearly 8 million immigrants came to the United States from 2000 to 2005, more than in any other five-year period in the nation’s history. Almost half entered illegally. In 2006, Bush urged Congress to allow more than 12 million illegal immigrants to work in the United States with the creation of a “temporary guest-worker program.” Bush also urged Congress to provide additional funds for border security and committed to deploying 6,000 National Guard troops to the U.S.-Mexico Border. Bush contended that the proposed bill did not amount to amnesty.

A heated public debate followed, which resulted in a substantial rift within the Republican Party, most conservatives opposed it because of its legalization or amnesty provisions

The bill was eventually defeated in the Senate on June 28, 2007, when a cloture motion failed on a 46–53 vote.

President Obama signed into law a series of executive actions to crack down on illegal immigration at the border, prioritize deporting felons not families, and require certain undocumented immigrants to pass a criminal background check and pay taxes in order to stay in the U.S. without fear of deportation. It also granted educational assistance and rights to illegal immigrants reserved for legal citizens, as well as social security services and additional funds to employers willing to hire them. He signed it into law in December of 2014, without Congressional approval. This was largely seen as an attempt to gain more Democratic Party power in Congress as this was done quickly after Democrats lost by a large margin in the midterm elections to Republicans.

While neither Presidents attempt at legalizing illegal immigrants for hiring and safety from deportation were popular with the U.S. Senate or the U.S. public, President Bush slightly wins this one in that he sought Congress’ approval in accordance with the U.S. Constitution and U.S. law.

President Obama purposely violated the U.S. Constitution and his sworn oath. His sworn oath being, as mentioned above, “I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will faithfully execute the Office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my Ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States.” Furthermore, it states in the U.S. Constitution, Article I, Section 1, “All legislative Powers herein granted shall be vested in a Congress of the United States, which shall consist of a Senate and House of Representatives.”

A legislature is defined as “the law-making body of a political unit, usually a national government, that has power to enact, amend, and repeal public policy.” What that means, is that CONGRESS makes laws, not the President. They sign bills, pass them through both the House and the Senate, and, only if voted in favor of by both, are sent to the President to sign, who can sign them or veto them.

President Obama cannot enact, amend or repeal any form of law himself. It has to pass through both houses, no exceptions. The President can issue executive orders, but an executive order is not the right to make law, but support. A Presidential executive order is legally defined as “an order to help officers and agencies of the executive branch manage the operations within the federal government itself.”

Aiding the management of an operation is not changing the laws by which they are bound, but granting support and additional assets to assist the operations within the law. There is no constitutional provision nor statute that explicitly permits executive orders. The term “executive power” in Article II, Section 1, Clause 1 of the Constitution, refers to the title of President as the executive. He is instructed therein by the declaration “take Care that the Laws be faithfully executed” made in Article II, Section 3, Clause 5, else he faces impeachment.

Therefore, any attempt to use Presidential powers to break the law are illegal acts that violate Constitutional Law, granting the right to impeach the President.

The Immigration and Nationality Act of 1952 (Still in effect today and has yet to be repealed by any act of Congress) requires “an alien to apply for a petition for naturalization. This form may be obtained from any office of the Immigration and Naturalization Service, a division of the Department of Justice, or from any court authorized to naturalize aliens.

Before applying, an alien must be at least 18 years old and must have been lawfully admitted to live permanently in the United States.”

The penalty for illegal entry into the U.S., has been and always will be, deportation (and sometimes ban for re-entry by a determined amount of time, usually in years).

President Obama’s attempt to grant them protection from deportation is a violation of federal lawconcerning immigration. A law that was signed into authority by Congress.

Due to the illegal nature of it, it has been denied and refused by courts and judges, as well as over 25 states sueing over it and federal judges ruling it “illegal and unconstitutional”, denying it to be used in courts of law. Without Senate approval and support, President Obama has been unable to enforce it and that explains why it has not taken effect. For that reason, it states at the http://www.uscis.gov/immigrationaction that “These initiatives have not yet been implemented, and USCIS is not accepting any requests or applications at this time.”

Therefore, President Bush wins in immigration via staying within the realms of the law and Constitution.

Part 4: The Economy

Bush VS Obama: The Cold, Hard Facts, Part 2: Military Action

by Sean A. Langley, Guest Contributor

This is going to be one where I get a lot of heat, but I’ll deal with it.

Bush was involved with two wars. The first one was in Afghanistan, due to their belief that the 9/11 attacks were from Osama Bin Laden. While Osama initially denied any involvement in 2001 attacks, he later confirmed his involvement (as if we didn’t already know, as members of the Hamburg Cell of the Taliban comitted the 9/11 attacks and the Taliban is based in Afghanistan), which pretty much resolves that question.

It should be noted that while President Bush had U.S. Forces invade Afghanistan in 2001, on 14 September 2001, Congress passed legislation titled Authorization for Use of Military Force Against Terrorists, which was signed on 18 September 2001 by President Bush. It authorized the use of U.S. Armed Forces against those responsible for the 9/11 attacks and those who harbored them. Meaning Bush sought and gained approval from Congress before sending any troops. Therefore, the War in Afghanistan can be said to be legally justified.

The Iraq war is a bit complicated and requires a brief history of it.

For all intents, the Iraq War is actually just another chapter in the Gulf War. The first chapter of the Gulf War, code-named Operation: Desert Shield, was in response to Iraq’s illegal invasion and attempt to annex a U.S. ally, Kuwait, in 1990. The battles were one-sided and short and quickly ended with a cease-fire on 28 February 1991, negotiated between the UN Coalition and Iraq.

However, a cease-fire is not an official end to a war. The war never officially stopped, which was why former President Bill Clinton could authorize bombings and missile strikes during his Presidency.

In 1993, former President George H. Bush was visiting Kuwait. Iraqi intelligence agents crossed over into Kuwait illegally and attempted to assassinate him. While Bill Clinton and Bush certainly had their issues, Clinton refused to tolerate the attempted assassination on a U.S. citizen visiting an allied nation, particularly a former U.S. President. Thus, he fired 24 cruise missiles from two Navy ships, destroying the Iraqi Intelligence HQ. Former Secretary of Defense Les Aspin said that they were “sending a message” to Iraq. Saddam couldn’t be reached for comment, I think at that time he was digging the beginnings of his spider-hole in a dead panic.

In 1996, the Iraqi military lead an offensive campaign against the Kurds in Iraq. It was pretty close to genocidal and very well could have ended up that way if the U.S. hadn’t interfered (as a veteran that served during in three deployments to Iraq, the first during the Surge in ‘05-’06, then serving in ‘08-’09 and finally in Operation:New Dawn in 2011, I can verify that the Saddam supporters hated Khurds, Shia Muslims, Jews and Christians with utter violence).

Furthermore, Saddam was in clear violation of United Nations Security Council Resolution 688 forbidding repression of Iraq ’​s ethnic minorities. So, President Clinton had missile strikes from a joint-force of the U.S. Navy and Air Force on Kut, Iskandariyah, Nasiriyah, and Tallil. Which pretty much put an end to those hostilities (I think Saddam freaked out and went right back to digging his spider-hole during that period). The incident was referred to as Operation: Desert Strike.

Finally, in 1998 the bombing of Iraq (code-named Operation Desert Fox) was a major four-day bombing campaign on Iraqi targets for Iraq’s failure to comply with United Nations Security Council resolutions and its interference with United Nations Special Commission inspectors (i.e., submit to weapon inspections to ensure that neither illegally inhumane weapons nor weapons of mass destruction were being manufactured, kept or used).

President Clinton said the focus was to “degrade, not destroy.” The Iraqi’s basically said, “if we’d known that was all you were going to do, we’d have stopped those inspections a long time ago.” That being said, I do believe Saddam had his spider-hole about 3/4 of the way done by this point.

There was a scandal involved, as they found U.S. intelligence agents planted with the U.N. inspectors, but that would have qualified for a complaint, not a refusal for inspection like Iraq did.

However, there was no official cease-fire after the revelation of CIA involvement nor was there a “real” end to the Gulf War. Therefore, as Iraq was still not submitting to inspections after that, it essentially meant every day after Desert Fox, they could have justified invading Iraq on the case of a technicality.

Truth be told, Bush didn’t even need claims of WMD’s actually being there or of Iraq possibly being involved with 9/11. In 2002, he wanted the inspections resumed in Iraq (as was legally expected). In 2002, U.N. Resolution 1441 was passed where Iraq was to resume and not at all prevent or slow down any inspections, and that if they would not cooperate, then the use of military force by the U.S. and it’s allies was permitted. Iraq refused inspections of certain key areas in 2003.

Upon that refusal, President Bush had full authority and even in fact had attained permission from the U.N., having made several warnings to Iraq and demands that the inspections be permitted to be completed prior to. Even with U.N. approval and U.K. support, President Bush still chose to request permission from Congress in accordance to the U.S. Constitution.

“The Iraq Resolution,” authorizing an invasion of Iraq, was introduced in Congress on 2 October 2002, in conjunction with the Administration’s proposals, H.J. Res. 114 passed in the House of Representatives on Thursday afternoon at 3:05 p.m. EDT on 10 October 2002, by a vote of 296-133, and passed the Senate just after midnight, early Friday morning, at 12:50 a.m. EDT on 11 October 2002, by a vote of 77-23. It was signed into law as Pub.L. 107–243 by President Bush on October 16, 2002.

We can always debate whether or not there were real WMDs, whether or not intel or evidence offered of the WMDs and/or an Iraqi influence of 9/11 was real or false. We can always debate the morality of the Iraq War, the methods in which it was carried out, but the legality of it was, Bush acted well within the rights of the U.N. Security Council and the U.S. Constitution.

Now for Obama. Obama DID reduce and finally pull out the majority of the U.S. military in Iraq, an operation called Operation: New Dawn (yes I was there. No, I was not part of the conclusion of Operation: New Dawn). Obama wanted to pull us out fast but we had concerns about it being too fast. Funniest thing is, I had the honor of meeting and even working with some Iraqi Generals and Colonels. They agreed and in fact wanted us to stay longer. We can always debate that but we can’t debate the legality of Obama to pull troops out of Iraq. That WAS legal…

Which leads us to Part 3: Authoritative Powers

Japanese ‘Nazis’ Today

by Robert Arvay, Contributing Writer

I lived in Japan for three years in the 1970s, and found it all but impossible to accept that these gentle, polite people could have murdered millions of women and children. They could never do so again. Then, years later, I heard about a group that was formed in the 1990s.

Its name is Nippon Kaigi (Kah-Ee-Gee, or Ky-Gee). It has become a growing political movement in Japan which denies that the Japanese were brutal oppressors of Asia in the 1930s to 1945. Instead, it claims that the Japanese liberated Asia from the oppression of the Americans and British. It aims to challenge Chinese occupation of disputed islands, by military force if necessary, a policy which will first require re-militarization, and de-pacification of its constitution.

This is no fringe group of disaffected Samurai veterans from World War Two, but a new generation that already holds a number of high political positions, including in the legislature and cabinet, and has the open sympathy of the prime Minister, Shinzo Abe (Ah-beh), who publicly visits a Shinto shrine dedicated to Japanese war dead, including some of the most brutal and vicious of war criminals.

Should we be worried? With so many other serious crises going on around the world, is there even a remote chance that Japanese imperialism will once again plunge the world into war?

There are many reasons to think not, but the few reasons to be worried should not be taken too lightly. What is that adage about those who forget the lessons of history?

At the end of the first world war, it seemed that Germany could never rise again. Less than twenty years later, that nation, with its ally Japan, went to war, and did so after more than a decade of warning signs that although by no means ignored, were not acted upon forcefully enough nor swiftly enough. Once the cancer had set in, tens of millions were doomed.

The Nazis in 1937 were what Obama (had he lived then) would have called “JV.”

In mid-1945, the Germans had learned their lesson, and so it seemed had the Allies. A “de-nazification” program was aggressively installed and implemented, and today, the people of Germany are deeply ashamed, and rightfully horrified, at the record of what their nation did. For a German politician today to even hint at sympathy for the Nazis is political suicide.

Not so in Japan. Interviewed about the Hiroshima bombing, a prominent Japanese figure termed it “uncivilized,” yet had no apology for the rape of Nan-King, the massacre of Manila, nor the enslavement of Korea, all of which were conducted under the official policies of the emperor.

Another Japanese war veteran, interviewed on video, casually mentioned that he felt refreshed after raping Korean women. Official Japanese censors prohibit audiences from seeing Japan portrayed negatively in any war movies shown there.

In 1945, unlike in Germany, Japan had no version of the de-nazification program. It was assumed that by imposing a western style democracy on Tokyo, the Japanese would never again return to their former brutality. For decades that imposition seemed to have succeeded. After all, in the 1920s, Japan had enjoyed a very strong pro-democracy movement that, had it succeeded, would have averted Japanese aggression, and saved millions of Japanese lives, along with many more lives elsewhere.

That pro-democracy movement failed because the Japanese militarist movement systematically hunted down and murdered the foremost democrats, driving the remainder into hiding. Democracy therefore, had a history in Japan, and today, that pro-democracy movement keeps Japan peaceful and productive.

This is not to say that the Americans and British were angelic in the 1930s. There was indeed economic imperialism by both nations against China and elsewhere, along with the French in Indochina. The Japanese, however, were more than merely underhanded in their dealings, they were every bit as murderous as the Nazis.

It is for this reason that even today, Japan’s Asian neighbors are suspicious that at some time in a foreseeable future, Japan may once again go dark, and attack.

One irony is that part of what keeps Japan peaceful is its descent into social ills, including ironically, societal amnesia. Its young people seem to know as little of history as do their American counterparts. An Australian living in Japan told me online that he was always sure to tell his Japanese associates that he was Australian, not American, since many Japanese have no idea that the Japanese bombed Australia in 1942, and fought bloody battles with the Australians leaving thousands dead. No idea at all.

Japan will hopefully never repeat its violent aggressions against other nations. Nippon Kaigi is a reminder that we must not, however, assume that Japan will automatically refrain from doing so. At the very first sign of resurgent military imperialism, Japan must be emphatically stopped.

In the meantime, we must use the lessons learned, and apply them in the Middle East, where ISIS is the new Nazi invader.