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No Static Military Action For The Wicked

Caption: Here’s some kinetic military action for ya, Baby:

U.S. Marine Corps tanks leave plumes of dust as they race towards their primary objective during a Combined Arms Exercise at the Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center, Twentynine Palms, Calif., on Feb. 1, 2000. Marines from the 2nd Marine Division’s 2nd Tank Battalion took part in the exercise which is designed to involve all elements of the Marine Air Ground Task Force in a live fire, desert training environment.

Image credit: DoD photo by Pfc. Andrew A. Thornton, U.S. Marine Corps.

The Obama Administrations description of the military actions we’re taking in Libya as “kinetic military action” caused James Ala to wonder:

Kinetic Military Action, are you serious Mr. Rhodes? As opposed to what, Inertial Civilian Rest? Sweet Baby Jesus on a Pogo Stick, these people can not be serious.

How “blowing shit up” became “kinetic military action” is a mystery best left to the PR flack that went there. Granted the possibilities are endless. The Lusitania was not sunk by a German sub, it was provided a submersive water experience. China did not suffer “The Rape Of Nanjing” it underwent a rapid urban clearing and renewal program. Pearl Harbor did not suffer a sneak attack, that was unannounced aggressive diplomatic messaging.

Mangled Wordsmithing

Having watched every presidential administration since Nixon’s mangle the English language to obscure what they were really doing, I’d say that they really are serious. Of course, it does beg the question of what an opposite would be. Other possibilities that occurred to me:

Caption: An FA-18 Hornet breaking the sound barrier. It doesn’t get much more kinetic than that, now does it? Wonder how many miles per gallon that bad boy gets?

Image credit: John Gay/Wikipedia

  • static military action: This could be a good thing. All that driving and flying around certainly burns up fuel, and isn’t that what got us into this mess?
  • isometric military action: For when there’s just no room for jazzersize.

I’m sure there are many other possibilities for a phrase this deliberately vague.

They’ve certainly set the bar at a new low when it comes to obfuscatory phrasing, but if I know our White House press corps, they’ll still be able to bump into it. We’ll be hearing about “kinetic military action” for months, if not years.

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