Support our troops!

One of the clubs the Bush administration used against it’s detractors in this war of aggression was the “you must support the troops” (or you are unpatriotic) club. How could you not support the troops? I mean they had no choice in whether or not they were made to fight and die protecting us from illusory Weapons of Mass Destruction, that is part of the whole soldier gig…obedience. Or is it?

Morale among some war-weary GIs in Iraq is so low that a growing number of soldiers – including some now home on R&R – are researching the consequences of going AWOL, according to a leading support group.

I am torn on how to feel about this because on the one hand I have been against this war since the very beginning and can sympathize with the soldiers who are stationed abroad without any clear idea when they might get home, working for an administration that paints targets on them with a flippant “bring them on”. But the ex-military in me is disgusted with the idea that these men and women who have vowed to serve their country are now coming apart at the seams. I know it sounds harsh but this is the nature of what they have been called upon to do…war sucks! It aint no PlayStation game where you get three lives and a nuclear powered plasma cannon.

That said the Bush Administration really isn’t trying all that hard to enlist the UN since they refuse to share the control of Iraq with anyone else. Guess insulting them and ignoring world opinion before deciding to go it alone looks pretty foolish in retrospect…especially when the American taxpayer is going to have to shoulder the burden of reconstruction in Iraq. Thankfully most of that money will be funnelled into the deep pockets of American business (you know, the bastards that are firing the taxpayers in droves).

I still support the troops but I will also support bad conduct discharges and courts martial for those who abandon their posts. Nobody promised that their stint in the military was going to be fun. If they can just hold on until the next election I am certain the next President will get them the hell out of there because Bush is going to be gone in 2004! Him and his whole cadre of criminals.

22 thoughts on “Support our troops!

  1. With you all the way 100% on everything in this. The military is there to serve; they knew the risks when they enlisted.

  2. Scare me again “W”.  If you listened to someone who said your popularity is slipping so rally us around the flag with a war—Then by God listen to God or any one that will bring these people home.  And while your at it compensate the families who now don’t have some one to expect home.  Rebuild IraQ, my ass—In two years they willbe back fighting again.  The great and wonderful USA must learn that these people and others over there believe that their cause is religious, That for hundred of years they have been wronged by another religious group or coutry.  And we “ain’t” going to fix it.  So get the hell out and stay out of there and any other situation like it!  You want to spend money, be a hero, and right a wrong then try finding jobs for those who don’t have them here in America.  Then make those jobs pay enough for a person to feed, house, clothes, and even get the medical, dental, mental care that all families in need not just ones with money. Educate the fools in this contry to look past color, fashion, and phyical attributes because you have qualified, teachers, engineers, healthcare workers, etc. but if you don’t employ them with decent wages , benefits, and respect then shame on you when this contry fails and we all look like bigger idiots than we do now. Yeah scare me again “W” and I swear I’ll do my best to stop you and those like you at the polls.

  3. Momma’s back and she’s mad! Well said Momma. Just to be on the safe side stop “W” at the polls anyway. It couldn’t hurt.

  4. I’d hate to be in a guard unit—these folks are there for much longer than regular army, and they’re looked down on.

    I think Steve Gilliard posted a long entry of letters from Stars & Stripes filled with soldiers complaints and how they’re not going to re-enlist.

    The Shrub dug himself in good, and even though it looks like Dumsfeld is being made to take a fall on it, it’s not enough.

  5. Boy was I surprised to hear you are ex-millitary.  How did you cope with doing what you were told to do just because they told you.  I view the military rather like you view the church.  I am am made extremely nervous by people who do something because God told them to, but doing something because an American president told them to? That’s gotta be whacko, especialy in view of the current holder of that office.

  6. My husband was in the military (Air Force) and I often ask him the very same questions. I just couldn’t do, I don’t have the personality to NOT question authority.

    Although I respect the system and understand that for it to be successful it must work the way it does.

    On one hand, I’m having trouble seeing Les in the military, on the other hand it’s not so unbelievable at all.

  7. From what I see, this was posted by Eric, not Les.

    I was in the military, and I found it impossible to not question authority. The truth is, soldiers always question authority. It was called bitching, and you primarily do it only to your immediate superior. It isn’t the questioning of authority (though you are limited to whom you may aim your questions), but the disobedience of that authority that is forbidden.

  8. Sorry for the confusion there folks, it was indeed Eric that posted this. As far as Les having been in the military I believe that that is a negative.

  9. If ‘W’ thinks he so bad-ass, he should emulate Richard the Lion-Hearted, and spend the whole time he’s screwing with the Middle East over there with him.  Hopefully, somebody will nail him while he’s there.  Probably one of ours.

  10. Dave R

    Respectfully, what planet do you live on???  Your comments on the military are quite probably the most absurd thing I

  11. Do you have a job? If so you must have a boss that tells you what to do.

    I have a job. No boss. I’ve run my own business for 7 years now. My issues with authority manifested in the corporate world, too. Felt like I could do it better myself. So I did. Thanks for asking!

    I pay taxes and obey the laws. But I don’t know anybody that opts into those, or out of either of those very successfully. There’s plenty of laws I don’t like, and tax expenditures I don’t agree with. So I vote, and stay pretty vocal about political issues, so I believe I’m doing the best I can there.

  12. I believe some folks have the idea that the military is something out of a movie or a Gomer Pyle episode. It

  13. For the record: I have never been in the military. I had three Uncles who all had been in the military and I heard enough stories about their experiences to convince me that it wasn’t a route I wanted to pursue voluntarily.

    It may surprise you guys to know this, but I was a rather meek child in many ways and not prone to fighting even in self-defense. I was what some folks would deridingly call a “Momma’s boy,” a wuss, an 80 pound weakling.

    Then I discovered Charles Atlas and my life changed forever…. no… wait… that didn’t happen.

  14. Hey Bill
      Yes my initial comment was facetious, but it was coming from the direction of my surprise at thinking Les was in the military.

    I do not find Cops or Firemen frightening.  I do understand in principle the need for armed forces, though in the case of the USA the way they are deployed around the world is sometimes difficult to understand.  The definition of what forms a threat to the US and what doesn’t is open to a great deal of interpretation and is certainly very different from Europe where countries border closely to each other.

    The point I was glibly trying to make is how worrying I find the chain of command to be when the current head of state often appears so easily confused.

    It is not that I am incapable of respecting the achievements and choices of anyone who has made a career in the military, but from personal experience there are some soldiers (at least in the UK) who could never approach your eloquence.
    I know this for certain as I spent part of my youth being beaten up by soldiers just for looking different, and I find it hard to believe that US Forces don’t have anyone as bad as the British Army does.  However, I am quite prepared to be corrected on this point as I have never so much as met anyone from the US military, and if they can all express themselves as well as you I might be wrong.  The other reason the comparision may be inaccurate could be that the British Army has a particularly bad culture, there have been many allegations in this country of late concerning recruits taking their own life during basic training and several cases where the method of suicide they chose was two or more shots from a long range.

    Anyway, don’t assume that because I find the concept of unquestioning obedience hard to understand that I am some kind of flaky hippy that thinks chanting would solve the problem. Why would I want Firemen and Cops to dissappear, it would be nice though if all over the world everyone currently in the armed forces chose to be in the Police or Fire Service instead, but note I said it would be nice, I am not naive enough to think it’s going to happen.

    All the best, Dave

  15. Dave

    You have shamed me into this reply.  Perhaps I was a bit hasty and read into your statement too much.  I spent many years in your country and I absolutely know what you mean by the negative culture there.  Here

  16. Hey Bill
      Yep I think we out do everyone in terms of racism.  My wife was in the RAF posted to Cyprus for a year or two so you never know you might have met her.  I strongly suspect that my attitude to the armed forces needs to be tailored a bit with regard to other countries and I’ll bear that in mind if I ever meet anyone from the US.  Thanks for the reply

  17. I don’t know you guys – I think the Australian army might be pushing for inclusion in the racism stakes.  Reflecting my wonderful country of birth as a whole, the Australians have institutionalised racism down to a fine art.  I think it largely comes back to what Mild Bill said; there’s a huge need to polish those multicultural awareness skills. 
    Also, while I’m here I just like to comment on the whole obedience to authority thing in the military.  As an member of the Australian military, I sympathise with your troops who are contemplating going AWOL due to their involvement in Iraq.  However, as members of the US armed forces, there is always the possibility of being sent overseas to fight – it kind of comes with territory of being the world’s sole superpower.  Imagine being an Australian soldier or sailor – no one else in the world gives a flying fuck about your country, but your dickhead prime minister decides that he wants to get his face on the international news.  As a consequence, we get involved in both Afghanistan and Iraq.  When our Defence Force is only 50 000 strong, that’s a fairly huge commitment.  We have sailors etc who went directly from Afghanistan to Iraq, and others who did 6 months in Iraq and then sailed straight to Bouganville Is. in the Pacific for a new deployment.  I can definitely understand deciding to leave the military/go AWOL in that scenario.  Bugger respect for authority – if those in power don’t respect the job your doing by paying you the courtesy of letting you know when you’re going to get home, they can’t expect you to do what they want – and I think that applies no matter what military you’re in.

    Cheers, Troy.

  18. That Troy, is exactly why I am torn in how I feel. Nobody, especially those who put their lives on the line need to feel unappreciated for their sacrifice whether it is selling the days of your life for an agreed upon wage or giving that life to defend your country. Right now in my country (and apparently in yours) there is a person in power that is more interested in self aggrandizing than in what is good for the men and women they are using to paint themselves as great warriors (just in time for the elections). I don’t know about your Prime Minister but our president spent most of his time avoiding his military duties while he was in the National Guard, strange that a guy like that would have the temerity to put real patriots in the line of fire.

    I sympathize with everyone who was duped by our bumbling leader into sending troops to Afghaniraq with what have turned out to be a complete fabrication… the imminent threat of WMDs. In the future make sure your leaders know not to trust a beer swilling, coke sniffing, military duty shirking momma’s boy who had to steal the vote (okay, the Supreme Court helped) to get “elected”.

  19. Face it folks war sucks. No winners. Just more killed by one side saying they win. When will we the United States learn the United Nations is a chance to prevent war.

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