Where Comedy Goes To Die: A Brief History of American Wars

THE AMERICAN REVOLUTIONARY WAR

  • Dates: 1775-1783
  • Primary Opponent: Great Britain
  • Primary Cause: Desire to overthrow the burden of colonialist oppression in the form of elevated tea prices
  • Deaths: 15,590 combat/51,080 total
  • Who was to blame?: The British, for not fucking off and letting us drink our goddamn tea in peace
  • Major repercussions: Birth of modern democracy; America free to become biggest dicks in all of creation

VARIOUS INDIAN WARS

  • Dates: 1785-1898
  • Primary Opponent: various native American tribes
  • Primary Cause: Indians were getting in the way of our getting some really choice land with their phony-baloney ‘treaties’
  • Deaths: around 4,000 Americans, plus who knows how many Indians because we didn’t really bother to count them
  • Who was to blame?: The Indians, because seriously, get out of our way, dudes
  • Major repercussions: Lots of room for mini-markets; no more Indians; curious lack of guilt

THE WAR OF 1812

  • Dates: 1812-1815
  • Primary Opponent: Great Britain
  • Primary Cause: British couldn’t quite believe they lost to America in the first place
  • Deaths: 3,860 combat/25,700 total
  • Who was to blame?: America, for winning the Revolutionary War and upsetting the natural balance of things
  • Major repercussions: Canada

MEXICAN WAR

  • Dates: 1846-1846
  • Primary Opponent: Mexico
  • Primary Cause: Mexico failing to learn valuable lesson from Canada about being a good neighbor
  • Deaths: 5,100 combat/32,000 total
  • Who was to blame?: Texas
  • Major repercussions: Burritos

CIVIL WAR

  • Dates: 1861-1865
  • Primary Opponent: each other
  • Primary Cause: certainly not slavery
  • Deaths: 203,000 combat/620,000 total
  • Who was to blame?: Negroes
  • Major repercussions: Slavery abolished; innovative new ways of oppressing black people developed

SPANISH-AMERICAN WAR

  • Dates: 1898-1916
  • Primary Opponent: Spanish oppressors & people oppressed by the Spanish
  • Primary Cause: Spain left the keys in its empire and just left it sitting there
  • Deaths: around 5,000 Americans and probably about a million Filipinos but that’s okay because ten of them only count as one real person
  • Who was to blame?: Mark Twain, for making us feel really bad about wanting in on the whole imperialism thing
  • Major repercussions: Spain decided to take a nap for the next 200 years

WORLD WAR I

  • Dates: 1914-1918
  • Primary Opponent: Central Powers, led by Germany
  • Primary Cause: Uh…
  • Deaths: 9,900,000 combat/38,000,000 total
  • Who was to blame?: America, for failing to respect the divine system of aristocracy
  • Major repercussions: Proved to politicians that they could pretty much convince people to go to war over any old bullshit

WORLD WAR II

  • Dates: 1939-1945
  • Primary Opponent: Axis Powers, led by Germany
  • Primary Cause: Someone took their eyes off of Germany for like five seconds
  • Deaths: 24,000,000 combat/72,000,000 total
  • Who was to blame?: Probably the Jews
  • Major repercussions: Fascism defeated; greatest evil in world history halted; people born in teens and ’20s became insufferably smug

KOREAN WAR

  • Dates: 1950-1953
  • Primary Opponent: The bad Koreans
  • Primary Cause: Douglas MacArthur needed something to do
  • Deaths: 475,000 combat/2,200,000 total
  • Who was to blame?: Karl Marx, for giving people a bunch of crazy ideas
  • Major repercussions: TBD

VIETNAM WAR

  • Dates: 1955-1975
  • Primary Opponent: Charlie; hippies
  • Primary Cause: French too snooty and ineffectual to keep their colonies under control
  • Deaths: 1,318,000 combat/3,000,000 total (not counting Laotians, Cambodians and Thais who pissed off Henry Kissinger)
  • Who was to blame?: Whoever convinced the Vietnamese that they could elect their own leaders
  • Major repercussions: Gave American right an exciting Dolchstoßlegende of its very own

GULF WAR

  • Dates: 1990-1981
  • Primary Opponent: Iraq
  • Primary Cause: April Glaspie
  • Deaths: 36,000 combat/45,000 total
  • Who was to blame?: Kuwaiti incubator babies
  • Major repercussions: Took care of that Saddam Hussein guy once and for all

AMALGAMATED GLOBAL WAR ON TERROR, INC.

  • Dates: 2001-present
  • Primary Opponent: Definitely not Islam (but really Islam)
  • Primary Cause: Arabs made American eagle cry
  • Deaths: 2,977 brave heroes on September 11th plus blah blah Iraqi civilians whatever
  • Who was to blame?: Jimmy Carter
  • Major repercussions: Major upsurge in sales of yellow ribbons, patriotic bumper stickers, country music, plastic sheeting

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