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» Hatrack River Forum » Active Forums » Books, Films, Food and Culture » Hatred of the military (Page 2)

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Author Topic: Hatred of the military
El JT de Spang
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quote:
Originally posted by Artemisia Tridentata:
2. Utah is the lowest in enlistments.

I believe you've been asked where you got this stat from. Would you mind sharing?
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Artemisia Tridentata
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I have no problem with persons with physical limitations or sincere conscientious objectors. I do have a problem with young healthy guys who pontificate about staying the course and winning the war on terror, while they enrich themselves (or prepare to do so.) with no feeling of guilt for avoiding military service.
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Javert
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quote:
Originally posted by Artemisia Tridentata:
I have no problem with persons with physical limitations or sincere conscientious objectors. I do have a problem with young healthy guys who pontificate about staying the course and winning the war on terror, while they enrich themselves (or prepare to do so.) with no feeling of guilt for avoiding military service.

Then we have no argument. [Smile]
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Icarus
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Ah. Okay. In that case, I totally misinterpreted where you were coming from. I thought your point was to say that people who claim to support the troops but oppose the war were disingenuous and cowardly. Looking back now, I don't see how I could possibly have gotten that from what you said.

Sorry for any bristliness in my tone.

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Mucus
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brojack17: Essentially, thats what happened with Canada, a slow gradual achievement of independence starting in 1867 ending symbolically (perhaps) in 1982, all largely by diplomatic means.

Now, I'm not saying that its the best way, but would British control of the United States would really have lasted not only to 1982, but to 2007? Is there any reason why Britain would conceed control of Canada but hold onto the US? Would its hold really been able to survive WWI, WWII, or the Civil War? I just find that incredibly unlikely. Perhaps there might even have been an American equivalent of a Gandhi, but that is pure speculation.
What I do know is that not only is your scenario dubious, but the fact that you're linking support for the military in a defensive war of independence to support of a foreign war of preemptive action and occupation. This I find unconvincing.

The second issue, the ironic thing is that you bring up the concept of taxation without representation. This exactly what an essay at OSC's other site is addressing http://www.ornery.org/essays/2007-03-15-1.html

The essay addresses most of what you're commenting on. I don't actually agree with the essay for different reasons. However, it would address the original blogger's wish and I would also add that the only way that the US would be stripped of its military would be if *everyone* opted not to direct funds towards it. This I also find unlikely.

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brojack17
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Forgive my lack of understanding in tax law, but isn't it illegal to opt out of any or all of your taxes? Or is your point that if "everyone" opted out, the government would have to accept general consensus?

[obvious dig on Canada]
Yeah, but who would want to end up like Canada
[\obvious dig on Canada]

My whole issue with the guy referenced in the original post is this: you can hate the war, you can hate the people who sent us to war, you can think that the military is a bunch of death hungry Joe's running around with human ear necklaces, but at the end of the day, these people are willing to die for your safety. In this war or others, they are willing to give their life for you. They deserve a little respect.

Edit: Do you really think Americans (even colonial ones) would wait 115 years for independence. No, that is why it went down the way it did.

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Shigosei
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I think our society should do its best to support those who choose to serve in some capacity, whether in the military, as a law enforcement officer, or as a public school teacher. However, I don't think "support" necessarily means doing that particular job. It means that we as a society ensure that people receive good pay and benefits. It means that we acknowledge that what they're doing is a public service. It means that we do what we can to help them do their jobs safely and effectively, whether that's proper training and equipment, choosing our wars wisely, or providing adequate funding. I have spent some time and money supporting the public education system. I believe that it's a vital public service. Am I hypocritical because I say I support the teachers but don't want to teach?

On the other hand, it's a lot easier to quit most public service jobs than it is to quit the military. Additionally, the military does have some risks and downsides that other jobs do not. So I suppose it's a little unfair to ask service members to do things we wouldn't do because they don't have the opportunity to say no.

At any rate, I'd fail the physical, so "supporting the troops" by joining is not an option for me.

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Lyrhawn
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quote:
Originally posted by Belle:
I let it pass Strider, because I didn't think it worth commenting on. That's also why I originally ignored this:

quote:
I think the average Democrat thinks the troops who want to be there are misguided and don't really know what is going on, and agrees with the ones who want to come home.
As a family member of more than one serviceperson, I find it insulting to presume that troops are misguided and too stupid to know what's going on, and that only those that want to go home should be agreed with.

But now, what has been served by me pointing this out? Do you think anyone is really going to change their opinions? Probably not, it's just going to fuel debate.

Then again, this is a discussion board and that's what we're here for. [Wink]

Well, when you present my views that way, no I don't expect anything meaningful to come out of this discussion. You just equated not knowing something with being stupid, and since I'm sure there are things you don't know, I guess you're stupid too, and so am I, and so is everyone on this board.

And I don't get what you mean by singling out this:

quote:
and that only those that want to go home should be agreed with.
Well...that's how agreeing with someone works. If you want them to come home, and they want to come home, then you agree with them. If they don't want to come home, then there's a disagreement. That's like saying it's not fair that I only disagree with people I disagree with. Just because I agree with those who want to come home doesn't mean I ignore those who don't.

A lot of Democrats think the war is more damaging to us than it is helpful, and we think that going to fight over there so we don't have to fight them here is beyond ridiculous as an argument. So I'll state my own opinion. I think the ones that sign up all gung ho to defend the US of A are misguided by fighting in Iraq, because the fight they are getting into isn't making us safer, it's making it more dangerous for us. And I think that many of them might not fully understand the situation if they think charging in with guns blazing is going to solve the problem, if that is indeed what they think. I certainly don’t fault their enthusiasm or their willingness to sacrifice for what they believe in, but I question whether or not they are going about it the right way, and to do so would question how much they know about the larger situation, or their skills at analysis, and I’m sorry, but I think that’s a valid question. Unless Belle, you’re one of those people who thinks that asking questions like that is unpatriotic?

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mr_porteiro_head
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quote:
Am I hypocritical because I say I support the teachers but don't want to teach?
If that doesn't qualify you as a hypocrite, I'm sure we can drudge up something else that would. [Wink]

But seriously -- that's an excellent point.

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Irami Osei-Frimpong
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quote:
Nobody hates war more then a soldier.
I don't think that's true.
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Artemisia Tridentata
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quote:
Am I hypocritical because I say I support the teachers but don't want to teach?
No it's not the same at all. There is an obligation, at least for males residing in the United States, of military service. That obligation (I believe it is still eight years) can be discharged by active service or by time of active service plus time in the active or inactive reserve. Or it can be ignored. At the present time, you will not be compelled (Conscription) to discharge that oblication. But, it's still there, even though most men chose to ignore it. There is no obligation to teach school.
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Icarus
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That is an entirely new interpretation of the registration requirement to me. Can you back it up?
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Artemisia Tridentata
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quote:
I think the ones that sign up all gung ho to defend the US of A are misguided by fighting in Iraq, because the fight they are getting into isn't making us safer, it's making it more dangerous for us. And I think that many of them might not fully understand the situation if they think charging in with guns blazing is going to solve the problem, if that is indeed what they think
Let me say again, the US military is totally under civilian control. No soldier or sailer would, in their capacity as a member of the US military "think that charging in with guns" is going to solve any problem. That "think" (decision) is made by the duly elected civilian government. People join the military for lots of reasons. But, I still think that one reason that is fairly common with all, is the feeling that they should serve their country.
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Belle
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quote:
Unless Belle, you’re one of those people who thinks that asking questions like that is unpatriotic?
I've never said that and never would. My objection is to your characterization of the troops as misguided, which I assumed to mean misinformed or perhaps not intelligent enough to understand what is happening. That is a prejudice about our armed forces that I've encountered before, and I guess I thought I saw it rearing its ugly head here too.

Because I can tell you, well-educated, well-informed, and intelligent people do serve in our military and many of them do believe we should stay the course in Iraq. You may not agree with them, but that doesn't mean they aren't informed or intelligent. They just took in the information and came to a different conclusion than you did.

I guess the issue is with "misguided" which to me conveys a sense of gullibility and an ability to be duped by false information. Which in turn suggests a sense of someone who lacks intelligence or the ability to be discriminating and exercise sound judgment. That characterization is what I was objecting to. If that's not how you intended that word to be interpreted, then I withdraw my objection to your phrasing.

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Icarus
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But Belle, isn't it natural to believe that you are right, and that therefore, those who disagree with you are mistaken? I read Lyrhawn's post not as an insult of those who disagreed with him, but simply as an acknowledgment that he sees those who disagree as being mistaken. As such, it didn't strike me as offensive to pro-Iraq-war people, but simply as self-evident. I thought Lyrhawn's point was to give an alternative to the offensive "soldiers are evil brutes" line.
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BlackBlade
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quote:
Originally posted by King of Men:
quote:
If the church had never traditionally made this demand of young men I would be very confident that enlistment rates in Utah would be average if not above average.
"If I didn't have to do X, I would join up."
Does Norway have a similar cultural querk? Can you even name a state that has something identical to a Mormon missionary?
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Artemisia Tridentata
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quote:
That is an entirely new interpretation of the registration requirement to me. Can you back it up?
It comes out of the "Military Selective Service Act". Look at Title 50, Section 454.
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fugu13
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Being liable for induction creates no legal obligation to serve, ignorable or not. Nothing in the act creates a legal obligation to serve, and construing the act as creating a moral obligation to serve is tenuous in the extreme. If an obligation to serve exists, it exists regardless of the presence of the act.
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Icarus
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This? This seems to create an obligation to register, in case a draft is ever needed. I don't read it as establishing an obligation to actually serve. I only skimmed it, though. Can you point me to language implying that the obligation is actually to serve, and not merely to register? I'm not aware of having ignored any obligation. I don't like the implication of that phrasing, and I'm not inclined to accept it unless you can back it up pretty conclusively.
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Kwea
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quote:
Originally posted by Artemisia Tridentata:
quote:
That is an entirely new interpretation of the registration requirement to me. Can you back it up?
It comes out of the "Military Selective Service Act". Look at Title 50, Section 454.
We are all required to register for a draft, but we are NOT under ANY obligation to enlist. That is one of the things I enlisted for fight FOR, the right to decline serving.


I don't think that those who don't enlist are less American than those who do, nor do I think that serving is right for everyone.


We do not have any service obligation in the USA, except under extreme conditions.


Thank God.

[ July 24, 2007, 08:10 PM: Message edited by: Kwea ]

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Artemisia Tridentata
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You are reading it right. If there is a need to compel then they will compel, using the described method, sufficent persons to fill the need. Those persons who are compelled will have an eight year legal obligation. Only those persons who are conscripted have the legal obligation. The obligation for the others is only a moral one and can be ignored.
As long as the government chooses to run with an "all volunteer force" ignore the obligation. Feel free to vote to send "those other guys" anywhere you want. I will not respect you.

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Kwea
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There is no obligation to ignore, so feel free to not respect me.

I will reciprocate.

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tern
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I think that it seems like the ways that some people oppose the war (which is fine IMO) or the military in general (more on the edge between fine and not-fine IMO) tend to affect the ordinary member of the military. (Not fine IMO)

For example, at my law school, there is some vocal opposition to allowing recruiter visits on campus, not to mention publicizing such visits. (And we have a reputation as a relatively conservative law school!) Well, who does that affect? Does it affect the military as a whole? I suppose so, if only a tiny bit. And does it oppose the war? I suppose so, if only as a token effort. But who gets affected the most, when recruiters are a three hour drive away instead of coming to campus? That would be the individuals who serve in the military.

So sometimes it's hard to tell, from the POV of a member of the military, if they are hypocrites when they allege that they support the military (or the military as individuals), or if they are unaware that their acts impact members of the military as individuals far more than any other effect.

FYI, I put my money where my mouth is, with ten years in the Marine Reserves.

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Icarus
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quote:
Originally posted by Artemisia Tridentata:
The obligation for the others is only a moral one and can be ignored.

Says who? Says you? Again, find me proof that there is such a moral obligation.

quote:
As long as the government chooses to run with an "all volunteer force" ignore the obligation. Feel free to vote to send "those other guys" anywhere you want. I will not respect you.
It sounds like you are saying that you do not respect anybody who does not serve--or at least, any able-bodied man who does not serve. Is that interpretation of your words correct? If so, then screw you; you're not worth conversing with.
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Miro
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I don't understand the theory that everyone has an moral obligation to serve in the military.
There are plenty of ways to serve your country, your community, that have nothing to do with the military. Or even government service.

quote:
Originally posted by brojack17:
Where would we be without the military? Under British rule with Taxation without Representation. Maybe.

If you want to talk about Taxation Without Representation, don't forget DC. We pay taxes, serve in the military, serve in public office, and (most relevantly) are American citzens, but we don't get a vote in Congress. On top of that, Congress has 'absolute legislative authority' over DC. We do get to vote for President, but 3 electoral votes don't compare to 3 (or even 1) congressmen. Five of of my shipmates from boot camp aren't even allowed to vote for President - they're from Puerto Rico. (They don't pay federal taxes, but the rest still applies.)
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King of Men
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quote:
Originally posted by BlackBlade:
quote:
Originally posted by King of Men:
quote:
If the church had never traditionally made this demand of young men I would be very confident that enlistment rates in Utah would be average if not above average.
"If I didn't have to do X, I would join up."
Does Norway have a similar cultural quirk? Can you even name a state that has something identical to a Mormon missionary?
Eh? You asserted that being a missionary is more important than joining the military. Others assert that going to college is more important than joining the military. I am saying that there is no moral difference between the two, and the particular situation of becoming a missionary therefore has no bearing on whether Utahns should, or should not, bear their proportional share of the military burden. (Noting for clarity that I have yet to see the statistic that started this argument backed up anywhere.) Presumably, if California had no colleges or jobs, recruitment rates there would rise drastically.

Norway has conscription, and also no regime-changing ambitions and no power-projection capability anyway, making it a bit difficult to compare the situations.

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TomDavidson
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quote:

FYI, I put my money where my mouth is, with ten years in the Marine Reserves.

More accurately, you put your mouth where your money is, since the Reserves do pay you for your time. [Smile]
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Mucus
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quote:
Originally posted by brojack17:
Forgive my lack of understanding in tax law, but isn't it illegal to opt out of any or all of your taxes? Or is your point that if "everyone" opted out, the government would have to accept general consensus?

[obvious dig on Canada]
Yeah, but who would want to end up like Canada
[\obvious dig on Canada]
...
Edit: Do you really think Americans (even colonial ones) would wait 115 years for independence. No, that is why it went down the way it did.

2) That dig seems unwarranted. You literally asked "... what would have happened? Would Britain have just said, go and be your own country?" I answered the first question and gave one (and a half if you count India) example of Britain doing just that.

I never said that approach is what America should have done. I'm just explaining why I think your assertion that America would still be under British rule is extremely unlikely.

I don't see how your edit relates.

1) My point is that you should probably read the linked essay [Wink]

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Lyrhawn
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quote:
Originally posted by Artemisia Tridentata:
quote:
I think the ones that sign up all gung ho to defend the US of A are misguided by fighting in Iraq, because the fight they are getting into isn't making us safer, it's making it more dangerous for us. And I think that many of them might not fully understand the situation if they think charging in with guns blazing is going to solve the problem, if that is indeed what they think
Let me say again, the US military is totally under civilian control. No soldier or sailer would, in their capacity as a member of the US military "think that charging in with guns" is going to solve any problem. That "think" (decision) is made by the duly elected civilian government. People join the military for lots of reasons. But, I still think that one reason that is fairly common with all, is the feeling that they should serve their country.
Given the recruitment problems the Army is having, and the publicity, I can't imagine anyone signing up wouldn't automatically assume that they will be sent to Iraq as soon as they finish training. They don't choose where they go, and all big level decisions are made by the civilian authorities, but generals aren't powerless, and everyday citizens joining up have a pretty good idea why. Back in WWII, they signed up ready to go to Europe or Japan, they knew where they were going, they didn't just sign up not having a clue with the vague notion of defending America.

Icarus - Thanks, that is what I meant.

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King of Men
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quote:
Originally posted by brojack17:
Edit: Do you really think Americans (even colonial ones) would wait 115 years for independence. No, that is why it went down the way it did.

Why wouldn't they? They'd already 'waited' 130 years, after all. Anyway, your challenge applies just as well in the other direction: Where would you have been without the English military? Why, you'd have been independent years before, and without the rather nasty and destructive civil war at that.
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TL
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quote:
would British control of the United States would really have lasted not only to 1982, but to 2007? Is there any reason why Britain would conceed control of Canada but hold onto the US? Would its hold really been able to survive WWI, WWII, or the Civil War? I just find that incredibly unlikely.
Just to jump in with a train of thought as I read this thread.... Forgive me if this has already been addressed.

Why are we assuming any or all of these things would have happened in a history where the United States is controlled by Britain?

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Icarus
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Captain Kirk would make them happen, no matter how many hot chicks had to die.

[ July 25, 2007, 12:15 AM: Message edited by: Icarus ]

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Lyrhawn
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Uh oh, now we're going to get into a debate on the morality of Kirk and Orion slave girls.
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Mucus
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quote:
Originally posted by TL:
Why are we assuming any or all of these things would have happened in a history where the United States is controlled by Britain?

Actually we don't have to assume that, my point was just that any one of those listed events (or more importantly, something similar, born out of the same factors) would likely have destabilized British control of North America by now, 250 years after, even if there was no war of independence.

Obviously I have no way of testing this. I would however note that in some sense, "he started it." Trivially, it is *at least* as hard to prove a claim that "the British Empire would still exist and would include the US, taxation without representation and all" as my claim which would be "I doubt the empire would have survived, let alone including the US, till now."

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Dan_raven
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Why I support the "Troops", the Military, and not the mission.

Its quite simple.

Our soldiers are willing to risk their futures, their lives, and their bodies to protect me, my country, and its interests. There is an unspoken, unwritten agreement between them and the politicians.

A Soldier will help win the war. A politician will help win the peace. Well, frankly, the War against Sadaam Hussein was over years ago. The military, the troops, the soldier did an unbelievably professional job winning that conflict.

Then the politicians, led by this administration, blew the peace. They sent in the wrong people to enforce the wrong policies that led to the growth of the insurgeants, the violence and chaos, and the emergence of "Al Queda in Iraq" that President Bush spent a good part of yesterday warning us was the great danger.

And we elected those politicians.

The ones that did not have a rebuilding plan for Iraq other than, "Their oil will pay for it."

The ones that sent hordes of new "Liberty College" graduates, neo-cons and Christian Evangelical Armegedonists to run the US rebuilding structure, and pitted them against each other with no oversite.

The ones that wanted all "Baathists" and all Military people removed from any place in Iraq society, cutting them off from all government jobs. Considering that Government jobs were all that were running after the war, they just assumed that if you write them off, then they will vanish--much like pregnant teens, gay lovers, and others that did not fit into their world view.

The ones that replaced the winning generals, after the "war" was won, with the least experienced General in the US army to start the rebuilding, since it was no longer a priority.

The ones that were more worried about winning the hearts and minds of voters, than of potential allies, now enemies in Iraq.

So the politicians and the strategies were ruinous to Iraq, and who is paying the price for these mistakes?

The Iraqi people of course.

And

The US Soldier. The troops who held up their end of the bargain. They fought, and they fight, bravely and professionally. Most fight with honor and with an eye for causing as little damage as possible. And the politicians who have neither honor, bravery, professionalism, or a desire to cause as little damage as possible, except to their own jobs, betray them.

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baduffer
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I saw this and thought it fit.

The Sons of Martha
Rudyard Kipling

The Sons of Mary seldom bother,
for they have inherited that good part;
But the Sons of Martha favour their Mother
of the careful soul and the troubled heart.
And because she lost her temper once,
and because she was rude to the Lord her Guest,
Her Sons must wait upon Mary's Sons,
world without end, reprieve, or rest.

It is their care in all the ages
to take the buffet and cushion the shock.
It is their care that the gear engages;
it is their care that the switches lock.
It is their care that the wheels run truly;
it is their care to embark and entrain,
Tally, transport, and deliver duly
the Sons of Mary by land and main.

They say to mountains ``Be ye removèd.''
They say to the lesser floods ``Be dry.''
Under their rods are the rocks reprovèd---
they are not afraid of that which is high.
Then do the hill-tops shake to the summit---
then is the bed of the deep laid bare,
That the Sons of Mary may overcome it,
pleasantly sleeping and unaware.

They finger Death at their gloves' end
where they piece and repiece the living wires.
He rears against the gates they tend:
they feed him hungry behind their fires.
Early at dawn, ere men see clear,
they stumble into his terrible stall,
And hale him forth like a haltered steer,
and goad and turn him till evenfall.

To these from birth is Belief forbidden;
from these till death is Relief afar.
They are concerned with matters hidden---
under the earthline their altars are---
The secret fountains to follow up,
waters withdrawn to restore to the mouth,
And gather the floods as in a cup,
and pour them again at a city's drouth.

They do not preach that their God will rouse them
a little before the nuts work loose.
They do not preach that His Pity allows them
to drop their job when they damn-well choose.
As in the thronged and the lighted ways,
so in the dark and the desert they stand,
Wary and watchful all their days
that their brethren's ways may be long in the land.

Raise ye the stone or cleave the wood
to make a path more fair or flat;
Lo, it is black already with the blood
some Son of Martha spilled for that!
Not as a ladder from earth to Heaven,
not as a witness to any creed,
But simple service simply given
to his own kind in their common need.

And the Sons of Mary smile and are blessèd---
they know the Angels are on their side.
They know in them is the Grace confessèd,
and for them are the Mercies multiplied.
They sit at the feet---they hear the Word---
they see how truly the Promise runs.
They have cast their burden upon the Lord, and---
the Lord He lays it on Martha's Sons!

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Hookt_Un_Fonix
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Dan_Raven, I agree with you on the soldiers doing their jobs. This was one of the most efficient and lop sided military conflicts in our history as a nation. If Bush had half as good of an exit strategy as he did in regards to his military service, things would have been a bit better.

The trouble with this situation though goes way back even before his daddy and the first gulf war. A long time ago it was decided to divide up the middle east into tidy little nations that was easier to control. Lawrence of Arabia even stated that drawing those lines to our whim woudl cause so much conflict it might not ever be resolved.

I truly think the fault in this growing conflict is not on the shoulders of our troops. It is on the shoulders of our ancestors, and up to our current politicians to correct.

Some solutions are simple in idea, but very difficult in execution. First we need more troops (if even for a short period of time) to secure the land, guard the borders and give people a chance to breath. If we pull out now, it will be a thousand times worse for the average American citizen for several reasons. The "enemy" would see that as a major victory, and be encouraged. We woudl also create a nation that will hate us long after our children's children die.

Imagine a nation that was conquered, torn apart, and then left to fend for itself. There would be some anger there for sure. We need to do all we can to make them stable, not like us, but stable.

The other solution maybe to divide the lands based on the groups that hate each other, and make several stable nations out of them. Maybe then they can work towards living together if we take them apart.

After that we need to not meddle in their affairs, and let them make their on choices. They need to make their own mistakes, and we need to stop thinking of them as children, because they do not hold the same ideas of freedom we do.

Of all the solutions only a small part would be done by the soldiers, but until they are done the soldiers woudl have to stay and wait. It is not the soldiers that are evil, they are just men and women like us, and unless you see yourself as evil you can understand what I am saying.

I say no one hates war more then a soldier for a reason. We have so much more to lose. While most people watch the events from their dinner table, they are living in a horror film. Soldiers talk of bravado, and dying for their countries. They talk of making the other slub die for his. The puff up their chest, and talk the John Wayne, but I know their is not a one of us in my old unit that would rather be in a bar with a beer and our friends, then sending good news down range.

We talk about how much God loves Marines for keeping heaven and hell full of fresh souls, but in reality we can think of a thousand places we would rather be then right there in the $#*^. I knew this but I still went, hoping that one day the men on hill would grow tired of it, and get better at their jobs, so we would rarely do ours.

I spent a few years under the gun, and still lose sleep over it. So I can safely say Artemisia that nobody hates war more then a soldier, but we still go. Its that since of duty that makes us go, we made a promise that we would go, in the hopes that some one else would not have to.

Some times words don't work, and thats when the boys in green got paid to get mean. It is a necessary evil ever since we fist started drawing lines on land, and claiming things as our own. Not all soldiers feel that same level of purpose, some are just a 4 year and go kinda of person, but they get the feeling. They understand, or they wouldn't even last the four years.

You train to be a killer, but not a murderer. There is a difference.

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imogen
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quote:
Originally posted by Irami Osei-Frimpong:
quote:
How many of you "I support the military" guys are/have been willing to sign on the line and actually serve your country.
I don't support the military, but I'd be willing to serve. I'm physically fine, but I imagine I'd get bounced quickly because I'd see the ordeal like a pap smear, sad and degrading but necessary.
Irami, given you've never had a pap smear, I find your analogy odd to say the least.

For the record, pap smears are neither sad nor degrading. They can be uncomfortable (but are not always), but I have no idea why you would mention them, and I think your use of language is potentially dangerous.

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Artemisia Tridentata
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quote:
It sounds like you are saying that you do not respect anybody who does not serve--or at least, any able-bodied man who does not serve. Is that interpretation of your words correct? If so, then screw you; you're not worth conversing with.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

If you read the thread, my objections are to the hawks in the US (and on this thread) who are quick to advocate "staying the course" and "winning the war on terror" claiming to "support our military", but would never ever consider serving. I have a secondary gripe with others that assume that somehow "the military" is responsible for the mess we are in.
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vonk
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quote:
The obligation for the others is only a moral one and can be ignored.
As long as the government chooses to run with an "all volunteer force" ignore the obligation. Feel free to vote to send "those other guys" anywhere you want. I will not respect you.

Are you still talking about people that are vocally pro-war or pro-Iraqi occupation that don't enlist? Or have you moved on to talking about everyone who doesn't enlist?

Edit: Ah, never mind. You answered while I was typing.

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rivka
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quote:
Originally posted by imogen:
For the record, pap smears are neither sad nor degrading. They can be uncomfortable (but are not always), but I have no idea why you would mention them, and I think your use of language is potentially dangerous.

Agreed!
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BlackBlade
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quote:
Originally posted by King of Men:
quote:
Originally posted by BlackBlade:
quote:
Originally posted by King of Men:
[qb]
quote:
If the church had never traditionally made this demand of young men I would be very confident that enlistment rates in Utah would be average if not above average.
"If I didn't have to do X, I would join up."

Does Norway have a similar cultural quirk? Can you even name a state that has something identical to a Mormon missionary?

Eh? You asserted that being a missionary is more important than joining the military.
That is not what I am trying to say. I'm saying that because that obligation exists many men in Utah who are of the prime age to be recruited simply choose not to spare another 4 years and commence college at the age of 25. In war time when the need for military personell is dire missionary activities are typically suspended until the conflict is concluded. Clearly missionary work does not simply trump army service.

quote:

Others assert that going to college is more important than joining the military. I am saying that there is no moral difference between the two, and the particular situation of becoming a missionary therefore has no bearing on whether Utahns should, or should not, bear their proportional share of the military burden.

Except that there are programs that a person could enroll in WHILE going to college, no such program exists for missionary work, I don't know if there should be, I don't have an opinion on this point.

quote:

Norway has conscription, and also no regime-changing ambitions and no power-projection capability anyway, making it a bit difficult to compare the situations.

I should note that in countries with similar conscription like say Taiwan, men can choose to serve in the military first or do missionary work first, but both have to be filled.

A kid I knew can never return to Singapore because he fled the country as his age of consripion loomed on the horizon.

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Artemisia Tridentata
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quote:
Except that there are programs that a person could enroll in WHILE going to college, no such program exists for missionary work, I don't know if there should be, I don't have an opinion on this point.
The National Guard (and I believe the Reserves) has a program which allows members to take two years off during their enlistment to serve an LDS (or other) mission. The time is made up after the mission.
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Olivet
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quote:
Originally posted by rivka:
quote:
Originally posted by imogen:
For the record, pap smears are neither sad nor degrading. They can be uncomfortable (but are not always), but I have no idea why you would mention them, and I think your use of language is potentially dangerous.

Agreed!
Absolutely.
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BlackBlade
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quote:
Originally posted by Artemisia Tridentata:
quote:
Except that there are programs that a person could enroll in WHILE going to college, no such program exists for missionary work, I don't know if there should be, I don't have an opinion on this point.
The National Guard (and I believe the Reserves) has a program which allows members to take two years off during their enlistment to serve an LDS (or other) mission. The time is made up after the mission.
I've never heard of this program. I'll have to ask my brother in law about it.
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Artemisia Tridentata
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Ask your state guard recruter about it.
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BlackBlade
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quote:
Originally posted by Artemisia Tridentata:
Ask your state guard recruter about it.

I'm not on a first name basis with him.
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Nato
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quote:
Originally posted by brojack17:
quote:
Originally posted by Artemisia Tridentata:
OK. Show of hands! How many of you "I support the military" guys are/have been willing to sign on the line and actually serve your country.

[Wave]
Total of seven years served, two honorable discharges (I went back for a second round after being out for six months), a few medals, and I cussed out a full bird Colonel (funny story).

Supporting policy is different than supporting the troops. Many are working class, blue collar kids who don't have many other options. That was the case for me. When I joined they didn't promise "money for college". That would have been nice to have something other than the GI Bill.

You can disagree with the war. You can hate the people who are sending them over. But don't hate the troops. They are doing a job that, unless you are wearing a uniform right now, you are not willing to do.

A statement like yours doesn't really address the concerns that guy brought up in his video. He thinks military enlistees are immoral for promising to kill whatever the government tells them to, which is not a concern you can dismiss by saying those kids are just in it for some money or college or whatever. I agree with you that the financial offer the military provides is or seems necessary for some people, but I don't think that's related to the moral choice. (I don't actually agree with the video poster--I think it's really more of a matter of these kids trusting that the government will use their power over them responsibly and only tell them to kill people when it is necessary for some good cause or something than them just handing over this

Of course, it's also important to remember that the choice to kill whatever the government tells you to isn't actually finalized until you actually do it, and many soldiers never have to make that decision*, so I don't think signing up (trusting the government will only tell you to kill things when it is moral) is an absolutely immoral choice. "Just following orders" is not a good enough defense if the acts that were ordered were wrong.


*I am not trying to say that every use of the military to kill is wrong, only that it is obvious that some current uses of the military are wrong.
quote:
Originally posted by brojack17:
quote:
Originally posted by Xaposert:
Incidently, I don't think soldiers are misguided for joining the military if they feel called to do that. However, I do think the country is miguided in using them as we use them.

That is the point I was trying to make. You can discuss all day long about why we are there, if we should be there, is it illegal for us to be there, etc. But the troops are going where they are told and are doing what they are told. We don't know the circumstances around their enlistment. We should support the individual soldier.
You can't completely ignore the collective level. Just like it is not good for us to be in Iraq right now on the whole, it is not good for each individual soldier to be in Iraq.
quote:
Originally posted by brojack17:
What country in history has been able to survive without a military?

Japan is doing pretty well these days, much better than when they had a military.


quote:
Originally posted by Hookt_Un_Fonix:
Most people who object to a military and call soldiers violent and mindless killers.

This is absolutely false.
quote:
They talk of a world that a military is not needed, and how it is a barbaric through back. I can understand this being a former soldier myself. I agree that war is barbaric, and there is no glory in it. The glory comes from those that know how horrible and meaningless most wars are, but they still sign up to serve.
[Eek!] How is that a glorious decision?

quote:
What ever reason a man or woman signs that paper, they have at least a small understanding of the risk they are taking. They understand that they lose their lives to defend policies they may not agree with. They understand they might not agree 100% with existing government, but they can still die on their word.

It is on the backs of these men and women that people who live in a fantasy world, can protest by burning the flag, speak their mind in public, or spit on the same uniform that gives them the right to do it.

Have you ever seen an American burn an American flag? People bring this up a lot as if it happens, and I think there were probably only a handful occurrences of this recently. This form of protest that is supposedly so offensive just doesn't exist.
quote:
No body hates war more then a soldier. I never looked forward to doing my job under any means, but I knew it had to be done and I was willing to do it, so that hopefully one day my daughter, or my future grand children, might not have to. I did this to insure that my children, and my children's children had the choice to do those silly things like flag burning, or spitting on soldiers.

I joined the military to protect each persons right to argue with me. I have been to other countries were this is not possible and it is not better then the US. I have been to countries controlled by religious ideas, and I understand why our founding fathers (many of them very spiritual) understood the need for separation of church and state.

I have taken human life, I have saved human life, and while I would love nothing more then to leave that in the hands of God, in this world we live it is not a reality we can avoid. Many people out there do not see us Americans as human, and while they are right some times, it does not give them the right to force their ideas on us. In those cases we need a military to protect ourselves, and to prevent unnecessary loss of life.

When has somebody "out there" forced their ideas on us? I've never had somebody else's idea forced on me.

quote:
Violence brings more violence, I understand that. But if we only use as much force as required, or get so good at it, those that use violence as their tool are less likely to want to fight. Persons like that are usually bullies and cowards, and only attack people that they feel can not hurt them. They fear that pain, and because of that people here in the US can voice their opinions of how the world SHOULD be, and live that fantasy. But until every one understands basic human rights, and respects the opinions of others, we will always need a military force of some capacity.
I don't think we have the capability to pursue a strategy like you describe right now. We are obviously unable to make Iraqi insurgents think their activity is too risky to engage in, as we can tell from ever-increasing resistance to our presence. I think the bullies are the ones sending a military off to do their violence for them, who have never served in the military themselves and would not send their kids there. The only way to stop that kind of behavior is to resist paying for it, as the man from the video in the original post is doing or to not sign up for it and encourage others to not sign up for it. This is a bottom-up sort of approach.

quote:
Originally posted by Artemisia Tridentata:
I have no problem with persons with physical limitations or sincere conscientious objectors. I do have a problem with young healthy guys who pontificate about staying the course and winning the war on terror, while they enrich themselves (or prepare to do so.) with no feeling of guilt for avoiding military service.

Then here are some of those guys
quote:
Originally posted by Shigosei:
I think our society should do its best to support those who choose to serve in some capacity, whether in the military, as a law enforcement officer, or as a public school teacher. However, I don't think "support" necessarily means doing that particular job. It means that we as a society ensure that people receive good pay and benefits. It means that we acknowledge that what they're doing is a public service. It means that we do what we can to help them do their jobs safely and effectively, whether that's proper training and equipment, choosing our wars wisely, or providing adequate funding. I have spent some time and money supporting the public education system. I believe that it's a vital public service. Am I hypocritical because I say I support the teachers but don't want to teach?

You're right. The other way we could make serving in the military a non-immoral choice would be top-down: we could replace the current government with one that would use military resources morally.
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BlackBlade
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quote:
Japan is doing pretty well these days, much better than when they had a military.

They only just recently got permission to build an army with capabilities beyond a "defensive motive." They have started persuing this course. This is in direct response to China who is pushing VERY hard to update and expand its military capabilities. Until the 1980s the abilities of Japan's neighbors to wage war were a joke.
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ElJay
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quote:
Until the 1980s the abilities of Japan's neighbors to wage war were a joke.
And Canada and Mexico are huge threats to us.
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