Here's how they do it, straight from the textbook: you start with outrageous crimes purportedly committed by the people you want to whack.
The world's attention is currently divided between an outbreak of celebrity fisticuffs on an elevator (useful only to advertisers) and the kidnapping of over 200 schoolgirls in Nigeria by a shadowy outfit called Boko Haram.
Over the next few weeks, that second item will grow fangs and claws, as "Boko Haram" becomes the most frequently-heard 4 syllables on your teevee. Good bye al-Qaida, hello Boko Haram.
By the time our managers in the Pentagon reveal to us that at least one or two of these missing, innocent moppets died under horrible circumstances, our fellow Americans will be whipped into such a froth that the boyz in the Pentagon couldn't prevent their invading Nigeria, even if they wanted to.
But of course, they don't want to. And by the way, did anyone happen to notice that Nigeria is 7th or 8th on the list of the world's top oil-producing countries?
That's all you really ned to know. By the time the American public figure out they've fallen for it again, the gasoline refined from Nigerian crude will have gone through their gas tanks and into the atmosphere as fumes.
Rather than remembering the Maine, or Belgium, or Pearl Harbor, or even 9/11, I would much rather my fellow citizens remember how they allow the brass hats to manipulate their emotions, and work them into a frenzy of war fever. It's not hard, and it works every time. Until it doesn't.
For all any of us knows, Boko Haram might be a fiction cooked up in the Pentagon basement. Please, let's not be credulous dorks again this time. Let's avoid having to confront the fact, one more time, that we were gullible enough to fall for the same old shit -- again -- and the result is tens of thousands dead from bombing runs and drone attacks, all because we got fooled one more time.