Discuss General Topics.
"The pioneers of a warless world are the youth who refuse military service." - Albert Einstein
Why would anyone join the military and get killed in a war?
I have a vehement question that I don't get. Why would anyone be dumb enough to join the military and go to war, where one has EVERYTHING to lose and NOTHING to gain? Technically, it's akin to committing suicide for no valid reason, especially since American involvement in wars usually have nothing to do with "serving your country" or "defending freedom".
I'm surprised they got anyone to serve in the Iraq War. What if no one agreed to go? Why would anyone go in the first place against all reason and common sense, as well as against their own survival instinct?
Who would risk their life and limb for a war they have nothing to gain from and everything to lose? Technically, it's no different than committing suicide. Further, there are no logical reasons to serve in a war, while there are many logical reasons not to, which I will elaborate on below.
Anti-war sentiment has been mainstream in America for a long time. Back in the 80's, blockbuster movies like "Born on the Fourth of July" with Tom Cruise and "Full Metal Jacket" by Oliver Stone, eloquently portrayed the true horrors of war as unjust and deceitful, without glory or honor.
So even back in the 80's, the American people already knew the truth about the horrors of war, and how there was nothing glorious in it, and how the government deceived young people into the military. The Vietnam War was a prime example, which was ingrained into the minds of the American people.
So how could anyone agree to serve in the Iraq War in 2003? Did they forget all those Oliver Stone films made long ago? Did they forget about the movie "Saving Private Ryan" which should have discouraged anyone from joining the military? Haven't all the poor youngsters who joined the military seen those films? Did they forget about the lessons learned from the Vietnam War?
How could they forget the Vietnam War, which has been etched into American history as a unnecessary tragedy and mistake that cost 60,000 American lives? Isn't that supposed to be common knowledge to Americans? If so, how could the troops in Iraq have forgotten all about it, since it was such an important lesson in history, and agreed to serve in another Vietnam War? It boggles the mind.
By now, everyone knows that the government lies a lot and starts unnecessary wars for profit, or some other nefarious reason (such as an Illuminati sacrifice ritual?). Even movies have taught us that. And conspiracies are all over the internet, in movies and pop culture. People get paranoid easily too. Government distrust is already part of the mainstream culture. So why are there still people who believe everything the government tells them, as if it were some bastion of truth? There is no basis to believe that authority=truth.
Besides, don't all living things have a natural survival instinct? Why would the troops serving in the war override their survival instinct by risking their lives in someone else's war? Why doesn't their survival instinct prevent them from serving in the war? If no one agreed to serve in a war, then the war would never exist. Simple as that, you'd think?
And why are more women serving in the armed forces nowadays? Women hate war the most. They don't even like watching war movies. Have you ever met a woman who was a fan of war movies? I've never met even one. Women are nurturers by instinct, not warriors. They are inclined toward social cohesion, not division. So this is very odd and inexplicable.
What's even more odd is why anyone would actually volunteer to serve in a war? For example, why did NFL star Pat Tillman feel the need to volunteer for the Iraq War so that he could get killed? That was a foolish suicidal move with no basis in logic, like a plothole in a movie. Why did Tillman's football SPAM BLOCK describe him as an "intellectual athlete"? Would an intellectual volunteer for a war that anyone could see was a sham from the start? Before the Iraq War, no one wanted it and no one supported it, except the controlled corporate media, who were probably just pretending anyway, because it was their job to.
If you add it all up logically, by joining the military and being sent to war, you have EVERYTHING to lose and NOTHING to gain. The long list of negatives and drawbacks far outweighs any benefits. Thus the decision to serve in a war is totally illogical, foolish and suicidal. Consider the following list of reasons not to join the military or fight in a war:
20 Reasons why joining the military is foolish, suicidal and illogical
Note: If you know anyone planning to join the military or currently serving in it, please forward this list to them.
1. The troops serving in Iraq must all know that they are risking their life and limb for corporate profits, not for freedom, democracy or protection of their country, right? They can't be that dumb. As David Icke said, "When you join the military you are not serving your country. You are serving an evil cabal that wants to enslave you."
So why would they agree to give up their life and limb to serve greedy corrupt corporations? No sane person would do that. Especially since the elites and politicians that sent them to war refuse to send their own sons to fight in it. Don't the troops care about this hypocrisy?
2. Those serving in the war risk losing their body parts or incurring permanent injuries, which would disable them for life and bar them from love, dating, relationships and romance with the opposite sex. They could never get a girlfriend or wife if they became disabled, since women will not love a disabled man. (like Tom Cruise's character in the movie "Born on the Fourth of July") This means that they will become miserable and depressed for the rest of their lives.
3. If the troops who are married, died or became disabled, their spouses and parents would suffer greatly, as well as any children. Why would you want to do that to your mom, who birthed you and fed you and raised you, just so you can be killed in an unnecessary war started by greedy sociopaths with no conscience? WTF?! Wouldn't that be a horrible thing to do to your mom? Do you even care about your mom or love her? Geez.
4. The troops have nothing to gain in a war, and everything to lose. The best they can hope for is to come back in one piece. Thus there is no logical incentive. They are not going to get a share of the billions in oil profits that the Bush family is getting. Don't they know that?
5. Troops often come back with post traumatic stress syndrome, which psychologically haunts them for years, or for life. Why would anyone want that? Many veterans even commit suicide because they can't deal with it. (like Tommy Lee Jones' character did in the movie "Heaven and Earth" by Oliver Stone)
6. In the military, you lose every freedom you have ever known. This starts right from boot camp, where you are treated like property, not like a human being, while you are turned into a killing machine. It's very degrading. (see the boot camp section at the beginning of the movie "Full Metal Jacket")
Why would anyone like that? Why would anyone want to become an expendable pawn? Especially when you know you are giving up your life and freedom for sociopaths who only care about power and conquest, not you.
7. In combat, you may end up killing innocent people, including women and children (as US troops did in Vietnam). Or you may even kill fellow troops in friendly fire. This would haunt you and leave you with guilt for the rest of your life. Why would you want that?
8. The pay in the military is not that great unless you are an officer. You don't get a pension unless you served for many years or you were injured in combat.
9. Veterans are usually treated like shit by the government, who no longer finds them useful. So they have to struggle to get benefits. Why would you want to serve a government who uses and dumps its own like that? It doesn't make any sense!
10. The food in the military reportedly sucks.
11. Boot camp training is strenuous, exhausting and painful.
12. Troops have to spend long indeterminate lengths of time away from their families, all of which is out of their control. They also have no control over where they are deployed.
13. Joining the military or fighting in a war is NOT "serving" your country or the people of your country. Nor is it "protecting or defending freedom". That is a cliche which if you think about, has ZERO basis to support it. So why do all the people in the armed forces believe in it? It's very odd and is a sad testament to how gullible people are to believe in the most baseless things. Has the military pulled off some kind of miraculous mind control trick? Why would so many believe something for no reason other than that they were told it?
Think about it. How does you dying in a war help any of the common people back home? It doesn't. The common people's freedoms have nothing to do with a war foreign country. In fact, most people's freedom has nothing to do with any government. Governments don't really have much power over you except to use scare tactics on you and mind control you through your TV. A government cannot terrorize you with a standing army directly because it does not have enough troops to push everyone around. As long as you don't break any laws, the government won't even bother with you. It has better things to do.
In reality, one's personal freedom is far more directly affected by one's daily obligations to their work, family, employer and bills. All these things directly affect your everyday routine and personal life, far more than any government does. Even your employer has far more control over your "freedom" than the government does, and you are free to quit working for your employer if you want.
Therefore, a conflict between governments (yours and another) does not add or take away your freedom in any way. Governments exist to control people anyway, not to give people freedom. So what does it matter whether your government is controlled by domestic corruption or foreign? Thus, your participation in a war does not contribute anything to freedom. Besides, isn't it ironic that the military claims to be defending freedom yet there is no freedom within the military itself?
I've never understood why those serving in a war claim that war protesters are being unappreciative of them for defending their freedoms? This is not only bad logic, but false as well, since fighting in wars based on deception to serve elite/industrial nefarious interests has NOTHING to do at all with protecting the freedoms of the American people. It has ZERO relevance. How can people be that stupid? It's very sad and speaks badly about human intelligence.
What does it mean to "serve your country" anyway? A "country" is a social and political construct that doesn't really exist. So how can you "serve" something that doesn't exist? This concept seems like a mind control technique designed to brainwash people into doing whatever they are told by their rulers for the "love of their country". Otherwise, it has no logical basis in reality.
In this context, the idea of "patriotism" makes no sense either, since there is no "country" to be patriotic for - no "country" to love, serve and die for - since a country doesn't truly exist except as a sociological/political construct.
Here are quotes from what great thinkers, writers and intellectuals have said about the folly and danger of "patriotism":
“Patriotism is your conviction that this country is superior to all other countries because you were born in it.”
- George Bernard Shaw
“Patriotism is the willingness to kill and be killed for trivial reasons.”
- Bertrand Russell
“Patriotism is the virtue of the vicious.”
- Oscar Wilde
“Can anything be stupider than that a man has the right to kill me because he lives on the other side of a river and his ruler has a quarrel with mine, though I have not quarrelled with him?”
- Blaise Pascal
“Patriotism in its simplest, clearest, and most indubitable signification is nothing else but a means of obtaining for the rulers their ambitions and covetous desires, and for the ruled the abdication of human dignity, reason, and conscience, and a slavish enthralment to those in power.”
- Leo Tolstoy
"In war, truth is the first casualty"
"The pioneers of a warless world are the youth who refuse military service."
- Albert Einstein
Likewise, the concept of "doing your duty" by serving in the military when drafted into a war (like the draft in Vietnam) has no logical basis either since the US Constitution says that we are free and that government has no right to force people into a war against their will.
Moreover, wars are started elites and their cabals for nefarious purposes that have nothing to do with justice or freedom. So obviously, you participating in that is not "serving" the common people at all. How do the American people benefit from the rich getting richer? Trickle down economics of the 80's proved to be a sham.
In addition, most wars the US has been involved in have had nothing to do with defending the security or freedoms of the American people. In fact, they have been based on lies and deception.
Finally, the elites that start wars were not even elected by the American people. They were placed there by their secret societies and fraternal orders (Freemasons, Skull and Bones, Illuminati, etc) to serve the agenda of that secret order, not that of the American people. Every researcher and thinker knows that by now. There is no "government by the people" in America. That is a myth that has no basis in reality. People have no real say in their government. There is no democracy and voting does not affect policy. The illusion of democracy has proven to be a sham again and again. Every example in history demonstrates this. How many examples have to occur before the American people realize it?
In fact, a true democracy cannot even work because most people are not wise or rational, but are foolish and easily misled. Mobs are not rational or wise, and therefore mob rule is not a good thing. Intellectuals throughout history, including our Founding Fathers, knew that and wrote about it. Plus, truth is not determined by the majority, but by evidence, logic and reason. So shouldn't evidence-based logic and reason rule a society, rather than the majority?
Even George Washington in his letters said that the Freemasons (which he was a member of) were working to DIVIDE the government from its people so that the people had no real say (only the illusion of it), while the Freemason order ran things in secret. Therefore, if you are serving the interests of elites who were selected by secret fraternal orders rather than the American people, then technically, that is NOT serving your country or its people.
Before leaving office, President Eisenhower warned America in a public speech about the military industrial complex and its corrupt aims for domination, power and control. Obviously, serving a corrupt military industrial complex has nothing to do with serving the American people.
In summary, joining the military is NOT "serving your country" because:
a) A "country" does not really exist. It is a social and political construct artificially created by society and culture.
b) Serving in a war started for profit, conquest and other nefarious motives by the elites and their cabals is obviously not serving the common people of your country, who do not even benefit from it.
c) Most wars the US has been involved in have nothing to do with defending the freedom or security of the American people. Instead, they have been built on lies and deception. This is nothing new.
d) The notion of patriotism is foolish, untrue, delusional and illogical, as evidenced by the quotes above.
e) A government cannot really take away your freedom. It can only scare you from afar through the media. No government has enough troops to push everyone around. Your freedoms are far more directly affected by your daily routine and obligations to work, family, employer and paying bills than by any government. Therefore, a conflict between governments (yours and another) does not add or take away your freedom in any way. Governments exist to control people anyway, not to give people freedom. So what does it matter whether your government is controlled by domestic corruption or foreign? Thus, your participation in a war does not contribute anything to freedom.
f) The elites that start wars for nefarious purposes were not even elected by the American people, but placed there by secret societies, fraternal orders, and their cabals (e.g. Freemasons, Skull and Bones, Illuminati). Therefore, serving them is not technically serving the American people at all, especially since there is no "government by the people" or true democracy in America.
14. There is no logical reason to serve in someone else's war that they themselves refuse to fight in. If Bush starts a war, then he should have to fight in it too, like Alexander the Great, who fought with his troops, did. There should be a law requiring those who start wars to fight in them. Such a law would essentially end wars. It's not fair or right for those who start wars to make other people die in them. Don't the troops know that? If so, why didn't they call Bush a hypocrite when he visited them for a pep talk? They should have jeered him, not cheered him.
15. Besides, anyone can see that Bush is a liar, demon and con artist. It's written all over his face. His facial features look demonic and evil. He looks like a total con artist and scumbag. Even a dog can see that. He does not even look serious, credible or honest at all. And he talks like a very bad stooge actor who can't even act. He looks like a total joke and insult to the American people, and is not even funny or comical.
No one would even buy a used car from a guy like him, let alone elect him as President. So why would the troops cheer him when he visited them in Iraq? Were they all acting? At least Hitler looked honest and serious, whereas Bush doesn't at all.
Why is it that when a President is much beloved, like Lincoln or Kennedy, they get assassinated. But when everyone hates a fake stooge President, like Bush, who is universally hated, he never gets assassinated? Isn't that so upside down? Shouldn't the collective will of the people have saved Kennedy or taken out Bush, according to the "thoughts create reality" principle of the Law of Attraction?
16. It doesn't make sense to kill people you have no quarrel with, just because their leader has a quarrel with yours. You should let them sort it out themselves, not use you for it. Who would want to be used to settle another's affairs? That's so stupid. It's not any of your business, so why make it your business? It doesn't make any damn sense! The people you kill in a war may be wonderful people that you would have been friends with, outside of the war.
17. America is an oligarchy or corporatocracy, not a democracy or a republic. It is a country ruled by an elite class who operate outside of public scrutiny. Everyone knows that. The American system is set up to benefit the top 1 percent of the elite, who essentially own the country.
That's why the government doesn't use tax dollars to provide national healthcare, like all the other industrialized countries do, so that no one has to go bankrupt from medical bills. Instead, the government prefers to use tax dollars to drop bombs on other countries.
Now is that a system that you really want to serve? Geez. How obvious can it get? And more to the point, why would anyone want to serve such a system?
18. If war is natural, honorable and good, then why do veterans commit suicide so often? Why won't any of the Congressmen send their sons to a war? Instead, they have to recruit boys from the poorest families who can't get jobs to go die in wars. But again, why would anyone agree to do that?
19. If you have an inclination to go out and kill or destroy things, why don't you just play video games or go hunting, or join a sport like boxing, wrestling or martial arts, to unleash your aggression? Why would you need to risk your life and limb in a senseless war serving corrupt people who lie to you? It doesn't make any sense.
20. Your government has a long history of lying and has lied to you many times. So why would you want to serve a liar or give up your life to serve a liar? For example, the US government lied in 1964 about the Gulf of Tonkin Incident, because it needed a reason to start the Vietnam War. As a result of this lie and staged event, 60,000 Americans lost their lives unnecessarily. Why have you forgotten that? Yet no one was ever brought to justice for this lie that led to the deaths of so many people during the Vietnam War. Where is the justice in that? Instead, it was just treated as an "honest mistake".
What's odd is that if a friend lied to you about something important and serious, you would no longer trust that friend. Everyone knows that. So why then can the government repeatedly lie to you, yet you still consider it to be a bastion of truth? That doesn't make sense, and only testifies to the level of brainwashing you've received that "authority=truth" and your need to believe that government is a caring parent.
So you see, joining the military and serving in a war is 100 percent illogical, foolish and suicidal. In light of the 20 reasons above, I can't understand or fathom why anyone would join the military and get obligated into serving in a war. It just doesn't make any sense at all. Why would anyone do something that was 100 percent illogical and senseless, knowing that they are serving evil powers that don't care about them, and could come back dead or disabled? I can't fathom that.
Could this be why the US government wants to dumb down people and keep them stupid, or else no one would agree to serve in a war if they knew the truth and could think logically? Do people who join the military tend to have lower IQ's? (no offense intended) or do they just have no job prospects?
If any of you reading this have served in the military before, can you explain why you joined up in light of the reasons above? What were you thinking? Didn't any of the sensible reasons above cross your mind? How could you join something with so many logical reasons against it?
Also, if those currently active in the military read the list of reasons above, do you think they'd drop out?
Note: No disrespect or offense is intended to those who served in the military, but the truth is the truth isn't it? There is no logic in voluntarily dying to serve the interests of a corrupt greedy elite that do not care about you or the American people, all of which has NOTHING to do with "serving your country or people, or defending freedom".
Note: If you know anyone planning to join the military or is currently serving in it, please forward the above list to them. You can forward the link to them, or copy and paste the above to them.
"When you join the military you are not serving your country. You are serving an evil cabal that wants to enslave you." - David Icke
“Devotion to the truth is the hallmark of morality; there is no greater, nobler, more heroic form of devotion than the act of a man who assumes the responsibility of thinking.” - Ayn Rand, Atlas Shrugged
For those of you who don't understand history, here is a great history lesson posted on Yahoo Answers:
http://answers.yahoo.com/question/index ... 718AAMyirc
"Resolved QuestionShow me another »
What did Aeschylus mean by "In war, truth is the first casualty"?
It's That Guy
Best Answer - Chosen by Asker
In order to fight a war, to start a war, you have to lie. The aggressor usually says it's only defending itself. Wars of conquest are disguised as 'liberation', and invasion and occupation is usually characterized as being in the interest of the 'victims'. And those who disagree are silenced as unpatriotic or subversive.
This is true of the Roman Empire marching into one territory after another in Europe, and before that the Greeks. It's true of Hitler marching into Czechoslovakia and Poland at the start of WWII. It's been true in almost every war the US has been involved in. For instance, at the end of WWII 'The Department of War' was renamed 'The Department of Defense', even though we haven't fought a true defensive war since 1812-14.
In the first Gulf War, GHW Bush said that Saddam Hussein had plans to invade every other country in the Middle East and that US satellite photos showed Iraqi troops massed on the border of Saudi Arabia. That turned out to be a lie. They trotted out a Kuwaiti girl who told a tearful story of babies taken out of incubators in Kuwaiti hospitals, left on the floor to die so the Iraqis could steal the incubators. That was quickly shown to be a lie. Bush said he was restoring democracy in Kuwait but it had never actually been a democracy before and certainly wasn't afterwards.
In the current Gulf War, GW Bush lied about Saddam's nuclear intentions, his possession of enormous amounts of WMD, his plans and capability to attack the US and England, etc.etc. When one reason for invading Iraq was disproven and discredited, Bush would simply drop it and trot out another. There is a website somewhere that lists 20 of these reasons, ALL lies. He lied about our intention to 'liberate' Iraq and form a truly democratic government. These were just the lies told at the start of the war, in order to bring the American people along with the war. Then for six years he lied about our progress there, said we were constantly, steadily making progress. He lied about torture and rendition, about the cost of the war, etc. All in all he told more lies than he told the truth. And anyone who disagreed with him was smeared as anti-American.
This is nothing new, EVERY war begins this way."
“Devotion to the truth is the hallmark of morality; there is no greater, nobler, more heroic form of devotion than the act of a man who assumes the responsibility of thinking.” - Ayn Rand, Atlas Shrugged
You've really outdone yourself on this one, Winston. This post is based on ignorance on so many levels that it isn't worth a response.
Why don't you ask the same questions to police officers, firemen, or most any other career that serves the public.
It's a shame that the world is full of bad people that requires the services of these brave people, but without them (us), do you think you would be alive today?
Oh, and I would give the food pretty high marks as I don't remember ever having a bad meal in my 24 years protecting your ass and preserving your right to have the freedom of speech to post this ignorant rant.
well, yes, jack nicholson claims to tom cruise that he's 'standing on the wall' but it ain't quite that simple if you study the history of imperialism.
profwag has perfectly and unintentionally demonstrated the 'defence' discourse.
a couple of reasons people join the US defence forces:
- unemployment benefits peter out pretty quickly in the US, unlike many other OCED countries. the military soaks up the unemployed. it is therefore a virtual conscript army.
- the courts sometimes steer convicted criminals into the armed forces given a choice between that and a jail term
interestingly, professional soldiers in other countries with much smaller, non-imperialistic armies get the following benefits:
- they pay no income tax when on deployment giving them a 30-40% bonus
- they get further combat or deployment allowance
- they already have very high pay even at the lowest levels
I understand a typical US private gets around $30K pa and no deployment pay and no tax breaks to keep the imperialist war machine going. There's just too many US soldiers needed around the world in offshore bases to pay any more. Their reward is often broken relationships and loved ones left in poverty while on deployment, not counting risk to life and limb. 1,000 bases around the world are needed for some reason, encircling not genuine enemies but economic competitors and holders and owners of needed resources. is 'defence' the same thing as grabbing everything and annihilating every other country that competes with you? apparently so, in the discourse.
It's a sad fact in my country that many of our young men and women do not have the means for upward mobility. It's either Wall Mart or the military. It is also unfortunate that those who do go to college will probably spend most of their lives trying to pay it off. In fact, the United States government will arbitrate any debt except student loans. Talk about social engineering. I digress, though.
ProfWag, I think both Scepcop and SydneyPSider have hit on some very cogent points worth considering, I especially take umbrage that our military is used as a global police force with a budget around 668 billion for the benefit of multinational corporations. Because this is what is happening whether we want to admit it or not. I for one am angry and tired at seeing our youth, our best and brightest, killed, maimed and exploited in this manner. I have said in a previous post that I support our troops when put in harm's way. However, I like many Americans feel it is their duty as citizens to point out the hypocrisy which brings war to our dinner tables each night. Enough is enough as my late friend Colonel Donn de Grand Pre had said. Smedley Butler is correct - "War is a racket."
Don't worry about them Misha, the U.S. Military is 100% voluntary. We know what we're getting into. I could not have been the guy leading the troops into downtown Baghdad getting shot at on the front lines. That's why I was in the Air Force. I experienced war to a point, but I was usually quite safe.
Winston's anti US-government rant is ridiculous. There are as many reasons that people join as there are people. Look, I don't know how a hunter can go out and kill a deer, but millions of them do it so who am I to judge? Why do people climb mountains, work on the top of skyscrapers, be a cop in Detroit, work in coal mines, or smoke cigarettes (I quit a week ago so I'm the worst...). Hell I don't know any of those things, but they are all dangerous! His post went from a question that's virtually impossible to answer to an anti-war rant that isn't worth my time to discuss.
If you want to me to go into my military pay and benefits, I'll be happy to, but I don't think that was the basis of his ignorant post.
Please know that I do not ever question your loyalty to your country or the constitution. I think I know you well enough by your posts that you are an honorable man with deep integrity. I feel the same way with Sdyney, Winston, Really, Arouet, NinjaPuppy and those who post and who really care. Yeah, it can get acrimonious. However, you guys at least talk about the difficult things which most people duck. Onward.....
I do agree with you, except there is one person on here whom I question their integrity. If one truly had integrity, they wouldn't post a scathing e-mail based not on facts or research but rather personal beliefs and then disappear, not to be heard from until they can think of their next anti-American belief.
At least that's my observation.
I think it's a thoughtful essay that stands alone. I don't see that any criticism of it has been levelled yet that requires an answer. What we seem to be getting is smear because it doesn't suit a prevailing discourse or 'grand metanarrative' about Victorian concepts of how noble it is to be in the regiment and fight like little boys.
I can answer the question of why people enlist: for the money, mostly. It's a job. A few may go in because of the confected advertising hype about 'being your best' or 'be all you can be' or whatever as another discourse. (I think the billionaires are doing a better job at being all they can be, not low-skilled grunts with a single line of training in loading weapons.) A few go in because they believe in something called 'leadership' in what is ultimately a dishonest and brutal cause. The ones going after the money are at least honest and just trying to survive in a harsh capitalist system. The rest are basically idiots. The discourses don't hold together as soon as you blow a puff of air at them.
We each have our reasons whether we understand them or not. An apropos quote from the movie "The Hunt for Red October."
Officer: You had to make
a political statement.
Or was it something
something that made you
unable to slip away?
Was it ego, Captain?
Captain Ramius: We each have
our reasons, Victor.
My own began
the day I was handed
the blueprints for this ship...
a ship which had but one use.
And as for the rest,
well, those are things
that I alone
must carry the burden for.
Also, I note visiting Congressmen and other top brass going to Iraq, Afghanistan etc use PMSFs for their security details -- Privatised Military Security Forces like Blackwater (recently renamed). Blackwater recruited people like ex-South African police, ex-KGB, ex-SAS soldiers and large Fijiian blokes as the regimes in SA and the USSR crumbled leaving them out of work. They are an experienced elite, however. It appears they don't trust the regular conscripted friendly-firing US military to be able to protect them to the same level of ability? Ordinary soldiers are to be used up fighting the enemy, the elites need to be protected by an altogether different bunch of mercenaries, GI Joe ain't good enough.
Thanks to Syd’s response, I feel compelled to comment on Winston’s rant, though anyone who has any experience in the U.S. military knows what an invalid and unresearched post it was.
(please refer to Scepcop's original post in this thread for his entire comments.)
1. No. Troops enlisting do not think about corporate greed, profits, etc. Before any of my reenlistments I never once thought about not enlisting because of corporate profits and I didn’t know any that did. As I’ve said, people join for all sorts of reasons (yes, having a job is probably #1). War being raged because of corporate profits is not thought about in a war zone. You don’t have time. Most of us understood that Iraq was mostly about oil--and we didn’t necessarily agree with that--but military members have discipline and we follow legal orders. We can’t just say, “no, I won’t go to a war zone because I think General Motors is making too much money.” C’mon Winston, do better…
2. Not even sure this paragraph warrants a comment. But no, I’m unaware of any military member who ever considered not enlisting because they might lose a limb and never get married. I mean, c’mon, really? Oops, downhill Winston.
3. Family member suffering also barely warrants a response. Do the thousands of police officers think about not serving because they might leave their family without a husband/wife/father/mother? I’m not aware of any. Few people enlist who are already married and the ones that do have their spouses support. I'm sure there are families out there who aren't proud of the military service, but I don't know of any personally.
On a personal note, one of my jobs in the military was casualty assistance. I had to brief the surviving family members on their benefits. You would be amazed how quickly tears dry up when I handed them a tax free-check for $100,000 and shortly thereafter followed up with another $400,000 and the knowledge they would receive a percentage of their active duty pay for the rest of their widowed lives. Survivors are well taken care of.
4. Pride in serving their country. Something the author of the original post knows nothing about.
5. No one that I am aware of with PTSD (and I personally am close to several people) thought about not wanting to go to war because they might end up with a psychological disorder. Most military members believe that they are too strong for that to happen to them, but until they live the horrors of war, they are ignorant as to what their own minds can process. Another uneducated comment from the original author.
6. Whoever believes that you lose your freedom if you join the military has never served. The only freedom I lost was not being able to speak publicly about my chain of command which most people who hold regular jobs are also faced with. What other freedoms are taken away Winston? I ate what I wanted. Lived in whatever house I wanted. Wore whatever I wanted after work. Did what I wanted. I guess I’d like more specifics as to what is meant by “freedom.” Sure we have to follow the UCMJ's special rules, but they pretty much follow civilian law.
I’ll see if Winston has the integrity to follow up on his statement.
7. No, I wouldn’t want that. Neither does anyone else, whether military, public, or civilian.
8. I served 24 years as an enlisted person (not an officer.) At age 42, my RETIRED pay is higher than the AVERAGE pay for an active teacher and tack on another 5 figures a year for VA disability payments. Plus full medical insurance (for $38 a month). I earned an M.B.A. without paying one red cent for tuition. I lived in 4 states and 3 wonderful foreign countries. I pay $3 a year for my license plate, receive huge discounts at many retail locations, and my P&I is free for my house. I guess if I were at Wal-Mart, I might have worked my way up to $20 an hour by now…
Good luck finding another company with those kinds of benefits that begin without a college education.
9. No, I have never once been treated like shit except for disparaging comments like these from Mr. Wu. In fact, it’s quite the opposite. Vietnam veterans had it very hard when they came back. Times have changed.
10. The food is outstanding. Side bar - we used to receive homemade cookies from wonderful mothers from all over the world, but we rarely ate them as the ones from the chow hall just couldn’t be beat. Best breakfast you can find anywhere and if you live on base, it’s 100% free. If you live off base, a hearty omelet, hash browns, and a biscuit and gravy will run you all of $1.50. Another side bar, I can honestly say there are 2 things I really, really miss about being in the service - the camaraderie of the people and the food. To this day I’ll go to a chow hall over any breakfast in the country. And their burgers are damn near as good. Really, Item 10 was just plain silly.
11. Yes, basic training is strenuous, exhausting, and a little painful. So is running a 5k, working as a brick mason, or working as a sanitation worker. So what? Is a little discipline and physical activity a bad thing?
12. Sadly, because my wife and I were both active duty, her and I were separated for a total of 28 months during our first 6 years of marriage. Way to go Winston! 1 out of 12 ain’t bad!
13. And the last one I’ll comment on as hopefully by now I’ve shown how far off his post is.
Here is Winston’s comment: “Joining the military or fighting in a war is NOT “serving” your country…Nor is it ‘protecting or defending freedom’.” 100% bullshit statement in my opinion. I would explain why I feel that way, but the author seems to be able to make such an outlandish statement and not back it up, so why should I?
1. Of course not, the real reasons are kept behind a veil, and the troops are fed justificatory discourses. I know one commando serving in Afghanistan, and they regularly get told complete sh*t for why they're there, and the story keeps changing. First it was to liberate everyone, or get OBL, now it's because of 'women's rights' (!!!???) They actually tell them that to keep them going, even though absolutely nothing is being done in that country about women's rights, especially not being achieved by pointing a gun at them then fleeing the place 5 minutes later as you 'hand over' to completely unmotivated sham 'local forces' who don't want to do the job set up by their new colonial masters, are undisciplined, will become 'corrupt' in no time due to the way the place works, smoke a lot of week apparently, and are just sham neo-colonial hocus pocus. The interest still appears to be in getting a pipeline through Afghanistan and N. Pakistan, and it's no coincidence that N. Pakistan is receiving a lot of random drone attacks to 'encourage' as many people to leave the area as possible, so it's depopulated and less trouble to police when the pipeline goes in. One of this commando's best mates lost a leg rolling over onto an IED in his sleep while they sleep on the ground next to their Bushmasters (the vehicle, not the gun) at night (a good practice??), another one of the group was killed recently clearing a hut. All for a neo-colonial pretext and a beat-up.
2. That's funny, there was a TV doco on the other night of young officers training at Sandhurst, and making up their minds as to whether they wanted to be in the military. There was a lot of empty pointless shouting at people for having their boots in the wrong place, and a lot of running and screaming with bayonets (very Victorian), but one guy, the son of a vicar, quit the service precisely because he didn't want to lose a limb or in particular his reproductive function on a field in Afghanistan, in his own words. The CO was very keen to get him to stay, but he wasn't having it.
3. Absolutely police do, it's a very dangerous job moment by moment. They can never be paid enough for the risks they operate under. I suspect that's why a lot of them decide to come to an 'arrangement' with various local crooks, it boosts their pay to make the gig worthwhile and regularises relations with the dangerous elements to derisk the job and have a nice mutually acceptable outcome.
4. Well, isn't that what the whole article is about? What are you really serving? Should you believe the discourses? What did Saddam Hussein tell his Republican Guard about how noble it was to serve him and their country? The same rules apply everywhere, surely?
6. See notes about the screaming etc in 2. That's the real Sandhurst. Everyone I talk to in the army says the grunts in particular take a lot of crap in the hierarchy with pointless rules and regimentation and penalties and putdowns etc. They actually said, 'who the hell would want that existence?' Ultimately in the armed forces there is no talking back, no consultation, it's all yes sir, no sir, even if the officer above you is an idiot. Pick them up on anything or fail to do exactly as you're told no matter how stupid or fail to be obsequious and it's a court martial for you. It might suit people who are simultaneously both masochistic and sadistic and like to have other people think for them and tell them what to do. I've noticed peole who parrot the discourses, no matter how politically uninformed and crazy, and are ambitious rise further.
7. Happens a lot though. You don't get that in civilian life -- at least not outside the US, where gun ownership is highly restricted.
The food and bennies sound OK on the other hand.
This just appeared on the interwebs:
This is the reality:
The words of politicians are insincere and disingenuous -- there is a cult in the US, and pretty much in the US only, of adulating anyone in the military. They're not 'the best of the best' by a long shot -- they are generally pretty inarticulate trained killers who are useful and dispensable pawns in geopolitical games for a while, but the pollies can't admit that. They generally have no strong or marketable skills outside of the military training they have been given. The pollies can't afford to stop blowing smoke or turn off the bullshit-slinging machine even for a second. The US has been a strongly militarised country and constantly at war with somebody since its inception.
Check out these great 100 anti-war quotes. Please spread them around.
http://www.humblelibertarian.com/2010/0 ... uotes.html
Here are my favorite ones by America's Founding Fathers:
2. "The means of defense against foreign danger historically have become the instruments of tyranny at home." -James Madison
3. "If Tyranny and Oppression come to this land, it will be in the guise of fighting a foreign enemy." -James Madison
4. "No nation could preserve its freedom in the midst of continual warfare. " -James Madison
5. "Of all the enemies of public liberty, war is perhaps the most to be dreaded, because it comprises and develops the germ of every other." -James Madison
6. "The executive has no right, in any case, to decide the question, whether there is or is not cause for declaring war." -James Madison
7. "It is a universal truth that the loss of liberty at home is to be charged to the provisions against danger, real or pretended, from abroad." -James Madison
10. "The spirit of this country is totally adverse to a large military force." -Thomas Jefferson
11. "Governments constantly choose between telling lies and fighting wars, with the end result always being the same. One will always lead to the other." -Thomas Jefferson
12. "I abhor war and view it as the greatest scourge of mankind." -Thomas Jefferson
14. "If there is one principle more deeply rooted in the mind of every American, it is that we should have nothing to do with conquest." -Thomas Jefferson
15. "Conquest is not in our principles. It is inconsistent with our government." -Thomas Jefferson
16. "War is an instrument entirely inefficient toward redressing wrong; and multiplies, instead of indemnifying losses." -Thomas Jefferson
17. "A coward is much more exposed to quarrels than a man of spirit." -Thomas Jefferson
19. "War...is as much a punishment to the punisher as to the sufferer." -Thomas Jefferson
20. "I hope our wisdom will grow with our power, and teach us, that the less we use our power the greater it will be." -Thomas Jefferson
21. "Over grown military establishments are under any form of government inauspicious to liberty, and are to be regarded as particularly hostile to republican liberty." -George Washington
29. "A highwayman is as much a robber when he plunders in a gang as when single; and a nation that makes an unjust war is only a great gang." -Benjamin Franklin
34. "Those who give up essential liberties for temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety." -Benjamin Franklin
35. "Great is the guilt of an unnecessary war." -John Adams
Great anti-war quotes by Ronald Reagan:
37. "A people free to choose will always choose peace." -Ronald Reagan
40. "Peace is not absence of conflict, it is the ability to handle conflict by peaceful means." -Ronald Reagan
41. "...no mother would ever willingly sacrifice her sons for territorial gain, for economic advantage, for ideology." -Ronald Reagan
42. "People do not make wars; governments do." -Ronald Reagan
Anti-war quotes by Dwight D. Eisenhower, one of the most experienced US military generals and former US President.
44. "I hate war as only a soldier who has lived it can, only as one who has seen its brutality, its futility, its stupidity." -Dwight D. Eisenhower
47. "We will bankrupt ourselves in the vain search for absolute security." -Dwight D. Eisenhower
48. "Preventive war was an invention of Hitler. Frankly, I would not even listen to anyone seriously that came and talked about such a thing." -Dwight D. Eisenhower
51. "There is no glory in battle worth the blood it costs." -Dwight D. Eisenhower
52. "We must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military-industrial complex." -Dwight D. Eisenhower
More great anti-war quotes:
58. "Do not ever say that the desire to 'do good' by force is a good motive. Neither power-lust nor stupidity are good motives." -Ayn Rand
60. "All those who seek to destroy the liberties of a democratic nation ought to know that war is the surest and shortest means to accomplish it." -Alexis de Tocqueville
63. "War against a foreign country only happens when the moneyed classes think they are going to profit from it." -George Orwell
68. "All the war-propaganda, all the screaming and lies and hatred, comes invariably from people who are not fighting." -George Orwell
70. "What is absurd and monstrous about war is that men who have no personal quarrel should be trained to murder one another in cold blood." -Aldous Huxley
73. "In all history there is no war which was not hatched by the governments, the governments alone, independent of the interests of the people, to whom war is always pernicious even when successful." -Leo Tolstoy
“Devotion to the truth is the hallmark of morality; there is no greater, nobler, more heroic form of devotion than the act of a man who assumes the responsibility of thinking.” - Ayn Rand, Atlas Shrugged
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