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Thursday, February 01, 2007

My turn...

It seems that the day has been filled with commentary on William M Arkin’s WAPO article The Troops Also Need to Support the American People. I’m a little bit late in the day on coming on board with the comments and postings, because unlike the ESTEEMED Mr. Arkin I do actually work for a living, but I’m in from work for the day and have read his piece (of shit) and have decided, after reading spree’s posting and those of several others, that enough can’t be said about this self important son of a bitch and his article regarding our troops.

My turn.

The very title of the article smacks of self righteousness. Does this knucklehead not understand the fact that the troops DO support the American people by devoting themselves, a portion of their lives, if not their entire careers, TO the American people?

Obviously not.

So right off the bat, his article is derogatory and hateful. That’s before reading even the first sentence.

I'm all for everyone expressing their opinion, even those who wear the uniform of the United States Army. But I also hope that military commanders took the soldiers aside after the story and explained to them why it wasn't for them to disapprove of the American people.

It’s apparent to me that this knucklehead follows the Orwellian model from Animal Farm; “some are more equal than others.” EVERY citizen of the United States is assured of the right to freedom of speech. Not just asshole Op-Ed writers and journalists for such bird cage liners as WAPO. YES, Comrade Arkin, even those in UNIFORM (hat tip to Uncle Jimbo at BlackFive for the suggestion that Arkin was turned by the Soviets. Well put, Top) have the rights of the Constitution of the United States of America. Deservedly so. They are the defenders of it.

Sure, it is the junior enlisted men who go to jail. But even at anti-war protests, the focus is firmly on the White House and the policy. We don't see very many "baby killer" epithets being thrown around these days, no one in uniform is being spit upon.

Tell that to Joshua Sparling. I’m sure he’d heartily agree that the flying spittle that landed on him was done quite by accident (man I wish there was some way to show a smirk in writing this).

Rose colored fucking glasses, or lying through his teeth one or the other. What a dickhead.

So, we pay the soldiers a decent wage, take care of their families, provide them with housing and medical care and vast social support systems and ship obscene amenities into the war zone for them, we support them in every possible way, and their attitude is that we should in addition roll over and play dead, defer to the military and the generals and let them fight their war, and give up our rights and responsibilities to speak up because they are above society?

The typical enlisted personnel’s wages usually put them well below the norm of the poverty level. Add to that the restructuring of health care benefits some years back where the military is under more of an HMO type program than when I was in.

But it is the United States, and the recent NBC report is just an ugly reminder of the price we pay for a mercenary - oops sorry, volunteer - force that thinks it is doing the dirty work.

Yeah, that’s really indulging our “mercenary” force, all right.

Mercenary \Mer"ce*na*ry\, n.; pl. {Mercenaries}. One who is hired; a hireling; especially, a soldier hired into foreign service. --Milman. [1913 Webster]

Ahem. Don’t you just love Webster’s?

To give the devil his due, Comrade Arkin DID say, “I was wrong in using the word mercenary to describe the American soldier today.” But words mean things, do they not? When WERE American soldiers mercenaries? They must have been at some point in time, according to this lame assed attempt at a non-apology. I’m guessing that my generation of veterans were the mercenaries, those of us who did our time during the 80’s when it was all “me me me.”

Fuck you, Comrade.

I'll accept that the soldiers, in order to soldier on, have to believe that they are manning the parapet, and that's where their frustrations come in. I'll accept as well that they are young and naïve and are frustrated with their own lack of progress and the never changing situation in Iraq. Cut off from society and constantly told that everyone supports them, no wonder the debate back home confuses them.
America needs to ponder what it is we really owe those in uniform. I don't believe America needs a draft though I imagine we'd be having a different discussion if we had one.

We owe them our gratitude for being willing to put themselves in harms way to keep our nation safe. We owe them our thanks for the sacrifices that they make for their love of family and country to leave their homes and go to foreign soil to keep our enemies from coming to our soil. We owe them our RESPECT for the courage it takes to go out into hostile environs and confront people that they don’t know, people that they are unsure of, in order for us to sit here at home and maintain our way of life. YOU, Comrade, owe them a great deal of all of the above for them making it possible for you to sit on your fat leftist ass and deride them.

Fuck you, Comrade.

Personally? I would LOVE to be young enough, and healthy enough (and skinny enough, har har har) to reenlist. But since I can’t, our troops have my full support, my full respect, for what they do. I know, as do so many others of us out here in the unpolled, unresearched, mostly silent majority. It takes a certain kind of insane to be WILLING to go into a combat region, much the same way it takes a certain kind of insane to go up to a burning building while everyone else is running away, armed with nothing more than heavy clothing, a water hose, and an axe.

Or are fire fighters a coddled lot in your mind as well, Comrade Arkin?

Our military today is made up, as has been SO many times, of the best and the brightest of our country. They serve because they choose to do so. As soldiers, as Marines, as sailors, they understand that sometimes they may be in less than desirable conditions. They work hard for what pay that they DO get, and people like you berate them.

You have the freedom TO berate them BECAUSE of them. Ironic, that. Ironic because the very freedom you are exercising is one that has been fought for, has cost lives, and no doubt, will cost more lives.

COMMON FUCKING SENSE says that the 9/11 attacks won’t be the last we see out of these terrorist groups. It certainly wasn’t the first. But it was the most deadly.

You, Comrade Arkin, bring my Cherokee blood to a high boil. I won’t do this, nor am I making a threat to you in any way whatsoever, but the mental image of you being staked out naked under the hot summer sun over an ant hill with just a couple of drops of honey put into your ears certainly does make me smile.

Sadistic, I know, but then again I remain…

Once and Always, an American Fighting Man.

A little post script for Greg Daniels, just to let you know that you haven’t escaped my eyes:

Regarding your comment to one of spree’s posting, The Left Wants our Soldiers to SHUT UP, in which you said, “This is a non-event. Who cares what this guy says?” Let me remind you of some key facts. During the Viet Nam era there wasn’t as much communication between the troops overseas and the home front as there is today. Al Gore hadn’t blessed us with the internet (another smirk for this one), so soldiers on deployment weren’t able to keep up with the news the same way they are today. Censorship was very highly practiced by the Armed Forces Radio Network in country to keep troop morale from being damaged by what the media back home was saying. Somewhere along the way, all that changed with advances in modern technology. Do I think that it’s a bad thing that the troops see what the dinosaur media is saying? Not at all. I think it reminds them on a daily basis how far our country has sunk into a state of moral apathy. My hope is that it gives them an extra reason to hold their heads up proudly and wear the uniform of a nation that was once great, and can be so again. Do we need the left? Absolutely, just as much as we need the right. Two halves to make a whole, with there being some modicum of balance found in between.

However, that being said, someone commented the other day that the left today was not the same left of the FDR era, when the left was as fiercely patriotic as the right, and both sides had the best interests of the American people as a whole in their hearts and minds. There was respect, granted it was often given grudgingly, but they were able to come to a common ground and work together, especially when it came to meeting the threat of a foreign hostile force that threatened our way of life and took the lives of our citizens.

Extremism is never a good thing. It accomplishes nothing; it inspires hatred and distrust. Take a lesson from Comrade Arkin when you start to make your commentaries, Greg. This man has inspired the hatred not only of the American military, but the American veterans and a great number of our civilian population as well.

When one can be so extreme as to inspire that much anger, that much hatred, can we truly say that it is a “non event?”

I think not…


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