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Bombing Middle East is fatal

By Malachi Baggett

Last Tuesday night I was one of many in the country that tuned into Obama’s final State of the Union address.

The speech itself was mainly just Obama’s final narrative of how he sees his own success, and the accomplishments he believes that he has made over the last seven years. Toward the end of the speech, however, from high up on his moral soap box, Obama stated that “When politicians insult Muslims, whether abroad or our fellow citizens … It diminishes us in the eyes of the world.”

However, just a few minutes before this comment, Obama made mention that more than 10,000 airstrikes had been performed. According to Micah Zenko, a member of the Council of Foreign Relations, the Obama administration dropped 23,144 bombs on Muslim-Majority countries in 2015.

Before you tell me that this is necessary to fight ISIS, I would like you to really think for a moment on this issue. Do you really believe that if an average of 2,000 bombs were dropped per month during 2015, that no civilians were killed? Who was killed? The CIA stated at the beginning of 2015 that there were 30,000 members of ISIS. The CIA has also stated that only six members of ISIS were killed as a result of these bombings. Maybe 23,138 bombs were just abandoned buildings. Or maybe they were buildings like the hospital that was bombed last October that killed 30 civilians.

Let’s imagine for a moment that these Muslim countries were able to capture a drone, learn its technology, and then reproduce it. It is not that hard to imagine as possible. Next, imagine that they use these drones to unleash 23,144 bombs on the US. 2,000 bombs a month. If each state was bombed evenly, it would be bombed 40 times a month. Would you not hate those countries? Would you not want to pay back those countries? Would you not want to go to war and bomb them back? If you did, they would probably label you as an extremist group and wonder why you hated them.

Insulting Muslims does diminish us in the eyes of the world, Obama is right. However, I do not think the Nobel Peace Prize winner understands that while having bacon wrapped around the doorknob of a mosque is terrible, he does not have the right to lecture anyone about the grease on their hands when blood is dripping from his own.

Malachi Baggett is a senior political science major at the University of Mississippi. Contact him at jmbagget@go.olemiss.edu.