So much has happened to this country in the five years since Capt. Bruno de Solenni's death in Afghanistan. We seem to be headed into another war in the Middle East, which, with Russia staunchly supporting Syria, could easily blow up into World War III, complete with nuclear exchanges.

Leaders of both parties in Washington (is there a difference between them?) promote another war almost on the eve of the 100th anniversary of the commencement of World War I (August 1914), even though surveys indicate that 90 percent of the American people are opposed to another war.

The politicians in Washington and talking heads in the media clearly have not learned the lessons of the past six decades of intermittent international conflict in which the United States has played a lead role. What have we accomplished except to spend untold trillions, mostly borrowed, wasted young lives and enriched the military industrial complex, along with their bought-and-paid-for dandies in the various cathouses along the Potomac?

For that matter what have we accomplished in the last century of warfare that hasn't been frittered away by these same politicians? Would it have made a nickel's worth of difference if we had elected McCain in 2008, who, along with other Republican "leaders" of Congress, such as Senator Graham, are loudly cheerleading President Obama's expressed intent to attack Syria regardless of what Congress says or does?

Meanwhile, Senator Graham of South Carolina is suggesting (threatening?) the possibility of a nuclear detonation in Charleston Harbor if we fail to attack Syria; at the same time that reliable covert intelligence maintains that nuclear warheads are being moved from Dyess AFB in Texas, without signature, to South Carolina. Stand by for another false flag attack? Another 9/11?

Using the threat of force to effect political action is the definition of terrorism. But will Senator Graham be charged? More importantly, is he possessed of some secret knowledge to which the rest of us are not privy? And has "" blown the lid off whatever has been planned?

Mr. Assad, the Syrian dictator, certainly is not a very nice fellow. But what are we doing supporting Al Qaeda, our enemy in Iraq and Afghanistan, which appears to be infinitely worse by several orders of magnitude?

Likewise, the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt, beheading Coptic Christians, burning their churches and toting AK-47s, are hardly the "protestors" Mr. Obama characterizes them as.

Are our leaders suffering from insanity, or worse? The war hawks in the Senate, mostly Republicans, and McCain in particular, received the largest campaign contributions (payola?) from those industries fabricating military weapons, hardware and equipment, as documented by David Knight on Friday's Infowars Nightly News (Sept. 6, 2013).

There is a quote from antiquity to the effect that those whom the gods would destroy they first make mad. Clearly it is time to remove these madmen (and women) from office before they destroy the rest ofus who have retained some semblance of sanity and a desire for survival.

But at times I wonder if it really makes any difference for whom we cast our ballot. During the Vietnam era the flower children (too young for me) used to ask, "What if they gave a war and nobody came?" The Lord's parable on unattended wedding feasts suggests an answer: The "king" would send out his storm troopers from the Department of Homeland Security to punish the miscreants!

In any event, Friday, Sept., 20, will mark the fifth anniversary of Capt. Bruno's death in Afghanistan. On that date at 9 a.m., a traditional Latin Mass will be offered at St. Joseph's Catholic Church in memory of Capt. Bruno and for the repose of his soul.

Let us pray for peace and the courage to follow George Washington's advice in his farewell address, that we not involve ourselves in the political affairs of other nations. If for no other reason than at this point in our national history we can no longer afford to.

Mario de Solenni is a Crescent City resident and the father of the late Capt. Bruno de Solenni.