letters | drone strikes reverberate

Since Vietnam, it has become too easy to hide costs of war

The recent coverage and national conversation about drone strikes does not seem to clearly address a trend in American warfare since our Vietnam experience. The conduct of wars — political, ethical, physical, and economical — has seemingly gotten cheaper. Without the draft or universal service, without the need to pay bills now, and without as many warriors physically on site, it seems, sadly, easier and less obviously costly to declare and wage wars.

Of course, the costs are very real to our place in world history, world society, and our greater environment, and are counted against our national well-being and future. They are just harder to see.

Dwight D. Eisenhower had it right in the early draft of his famous speech. He originally intended to warn us to beware the “military-industrial-congressional complex.”


This still applies, except fewer have skin in the game.

Ed Rizzotto