He’s a fine man (inside and out), which is why it is numbingly absurd, if predictable, for a CNN correspondent to have drawn a moral equivalence between Jordan Matson’s mission and that of 100 or so other Americans, who’ve flocked to fight alongside the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS).
You see, Matson is an American soldier fighting, voluntarily, with the Kurds against ISIS. And he is not part of Rome’s tax-funded Army’s. Rather, after praying “about what to do for a month or two,” Matson resolved to help the Kurds: “For me, it’s for the Kurdish people,” Matson told CNN.
Matson is “from Sturtevant, Wisconsin, a ‘mom and pop town’ as he described it, with just a few restaurants and three gas stations. He worked the third shift at a food packaging company,” before enlisting with the Popular Protection Unit (YPG), “a Kurdish militia set up to protect the Kurdish areas” from ISIS.
Unless they are pacifists—a quality as odious as militarism—libertarians ought to have no issue with Matson: He is risking his own life, doing what he believes in, is fighting a Just War, and is not funded by the American taxpayer.
Although there is no doubt that this man would rush to the aid of his “little platoons” in America—Edmund Burke’s description of a man’s social mainstay, his family, friends, coreligionists, coworkers—there is, seemingly, no place for Matson in an increasingly feminized, manliness-averse, honor-free America:
“Civilian life just wasn’t for me. The normal 9-to-5, I just wasn’t comfortable with it,” he said.
As to why there is no moral equivalence between Matson and ISIS enlistees:
* Matson is a Christian who prays to the G-d of the Hebrews and the Christians. Some of us think that Islam is problematic and that “ISIS is Islam.”
* Matson does not behead, rape, enslave anyone, much less innocent civilians.
* Matson is not fighting an expansionist aggressive war, his is a defensive war against an aggressor.
* Matson is on the side of the only people that has made good on their sovereignty; are westernized and are profoundly pro-American (G-d only knows why).
UPDATE (10/28): Tinny libertarianism, again. From the Facebook thread:
Myron Robert Pauli: Funny thing but I said about the various neocons like Krauthammer and Kristol that they ought to put their $$ where their mouths are and lead volunteers to fight rather than commit a collective national effort. Jordan Matson decided to do as an individual fight against some international evil that he personally cares about – fine for him. It is the policy of forcibly dragging the nation as a whole into imperial efforts that I object to.
Ilana Mercer: Myron Robert Pauli, so ISIS is just some amorphous “international evil.” Don’t lapse again into tinny, “lite libertarianism.”
Myron Robert Pauli: ???? ???? ISIS has not attacked the US. They have attacked Kurds, Shiites, or opposing Sunnis in Syria and Iraq which, last time I check, are not in the US – which makes them external – now perhaps I should have used the word external instead of international. But a non-interventionist policy for a limited-government republic would not “go around searching for monsters to destroy” (John Quincy Adams). So maybe we have a disconnect but I am not sure what you call “lite libertarianism” here – people overseas have the responsibility to defend themselves against the scumbags that attack them but we don’t have an obligation to help them (and it usually is counterproductive when we “help”) but if some individual wishes to help, that is probably fine.
Ilana Mercer WTF, Myron Robert Pauli: From the fact that ISIS has not attacked the US, it does not follow that one is morally neutral as individuals to their deeds against other innocents. We went over this “argument” when I wrote “Masada on Mount Sinjar.” By your “argument,” no individual had the right to mess with the Germans who murdered close on 6 million Jews and others.