The term “proportionate response” has been mentioned many times in recent days. Motivated by the Soleimani assassination. So much so I decided it was time to take a closer look at the term.

Proportionate response is generally defined: When someone initiates an attack against you, a proportionate response is one that suffices to prevent further attacks.

May not sound like it, but the definition is interpreted to mean “tit for tat.” Equal destruction.

When the term first came into use was difficult to ascertain. Some believe it was first mentioned in the popular TV show The West Wing in its 10/6/99 episode. Recall the series. Martin Sheen starred.

Could have been earlier. I have no idea.

Chapter VII-Article 51 of the UN Charter is relied on for proportional retaliation. I reread it several times. Did not understand it at all. Could not even figure out what it had to do with proportionate response. Gobbly gook as far as I was concerned.

The term or policy was not in vogue at the time of World War II. Imagine if the U.S. response to Pearl Harbor was the bombing of Tokyo Harbor.

The U.S. response was Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Japan has neither attacked nor threatened anyone since. Nor has any war broken out comparable to World War II.

Recall Carthage attacked Rome. Rome wiped Carthage off the face of the earth. For centuries thereafter, it was Pax Romano. The Rome peace.

Germany sunk a lot of U.S. ships and then declared war on the U.S. In return, the U.S. flattened Germany’s cities, killed or captured hundreds of thousands of its soldiers, and occupied its land.

I don’t buy proportionate response. You hit me, I am going to hit you back harder. Making sure you become reluctant to ever screw with me again. Cannot say it any simpler.

That is the way the U.S. should function. No sense in being the strongest nation in the world if the strength is not used.

Iran lives to fight another day. Afghanistan has been doing so for 20 years. Iraq for a long time also. Not the way. Demolish the enemy in the first instance. Make them fearful of ever attacking the U.S. in any fashion again.

From Iran, etc. to Duval Street. The issues not the same, however.

There are 16 empty rentals on Duval. The message?

Cuban cigar making took off in Cuba. Why didn’t it stay in Cuba? What was the motivation for it to move to Key West?

The 1860’s, 1870’s and 1880’s found Cubans moving to the U.S. to work in the cigar making business. The Key West cigar industry was growing. Tobacco factory owners imported tobacco from Cuba, rolled the cigars in Key West.

The move re making the cigars involved money. It was expensive to sell Cuban cigars in the U.S. Custom duties the problem. If the cigars were made in the U.S., the Key West cigar was cheaper and competitive in the market place. Ergo, Key West cigar making flourished.

By 1871, more than 2,000 Cubans had immigrated to Key West to work in the cigar factories. They were producing 62 million cigars a year.

Key West became a rich community. It was recognized as the Cigar Manufacturing Capital of the World.

By the 1880’s, one third of the residents of Key West had been born in Cuba. Welcomed by those already living on the island. The Cuban immigrants came to work in the cigar factories. They offered no competition to those who lived in Key West. They offered no danger. The Cubans were not interested in working in the wrecker or sponge businesses.

Cigar making brought a side benefit. The odor of the tobacco leafs and the cigar making itself produced a smell. An enjoyable flavored one. It covered the island. No one complained. It was the smell of history.

This weekend the annual Florida Keys Seafood Festival. Bayview Park. Saturday and sunday.

The freshest seafood  will have been caught, prepared and served by local fishermen and their families.

Entertainment also.

Admission $5. Children under 12 free.

Go! A great time!

The Philippine volcano is spewing. Expected to be a sizable eruption.

The Philippine eruption is merely the most recent natural disaster.  This past week, earthquakes in Puerto Rico. Wildfires ongoing in Australia. California wildfires. Seasonal hurricanes. Tornadoes becoming a weekly event.

Climate Change? Or is nothing different from days past. I wonder if we are concerned about what is occurring today because we know about it. Between TV and the internet, we are aware quickly as to what is occurring and we see it generally same day on television.

Or a combination of ordinary nature and climate change?

Just wondering.

Remember the earthquake that ravaged Haiti on 1/12/2010. A 7.0. Several aftershocks. All 4.5 or more.

The island was wiped out. Its residents in extreme distress. Deaths exceeded 100,00. Mass graves had to be utilized.

The U.S. contribution in aid Haiti at the time totaled $884 million.

Haiti’s recovery was slow. Very slow. When Obama was President, he provided additional U.S. assistance. He sent thousands of troops and tons of aid.

Would Obama’s type of assistance happen today? Absolutely not. Trump already exhibited where is heart is with Puerto Rico. He made clear what his position was in his first State of the Union address. He spoke of his “America First” theme. He proclaimed his dislike of programs such as humanitarian aid aimed largely at countries in Latin America.

Big football game last night. I missed it. LSU is the new College Champion. Beat Clemson 42-25.

Sport reports this morning are touting LSU as the greatest college football team of all time.

Tonight my blog talk radio show. Tuesday Talk with Key West Lou. Join me at 9 my time. A lot to talk about. A lot for me to rant and rave about.

Enjoy your day!



  1. An interesting term for the times: Asymmetric warfare

    “warfare involving surprise attacks by small, simply armed groups on a nation armed with modern high-tech weaponry.”

  2. Sounds like the 2nd amendment to me. Maybe surprise attacks by small, simply armed groups on a nation armed with modern high-tech weaponry, from within would finally end the Trump problem.

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