Debate and Discussion

Danger out of sight, Military out of mind?
Priceman at 8:12PM, April 4, 2007
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When I joined the military about five years ago, there was a noticeable difference in the way the population treated us back then. I couldn't walk five feet in public in uniform without being nearly tackled by people thanking me for my service to the country, little kids would smile and wave like they were looking at a superhero or something, and everything seemed to be discounted (not that I asked or anything).

However, here we are, nearly six years after 9/11 and the start of the war and things have definately changed. Alot of people look at me with an expression of “better him than me” now, i've had kids actually shrink away from me like I was that bad man their parents had warned them about, and military discounts are a thing of the past.

Before I go any further, let me make this perfectly clear:

I truly don't give a damn about any of that. Special treatment and stuff isn't the reason I signed up. I joined to do what needed to be done, period.

However, it seems that people have forgotten that the men and women of the service are all volunteers; honestly, none of us were forced to do anything. So, am I right? Is the fact that the war has been going on for so long, the fact that we barely hear anything about it on the news, and the fact that we've accomplished most of our mission there putting soldiers on the back burner? Does the danger have to be all “in your face” for it to matter?

Whacha think?
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:47PM
subcultured at 8:20PM, April 4, 2007
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seems like what happen with people who fought the vietnam war…they expected to have glory like how thier elders have told them when they fought in WW II, but they ended up bieng called “baby killers”.

maybe it's the nature of the war. WW II was pretty much a black and white war in people's POV.

maybe people percieve war differently now than before. they see it as barbaric/inhumane/disgusting as oppose to finding more peaceful ways to end a conflict. I mean we're in the age of translators, long range communications…far advance than before, but the only thing that hasn't advance is finding ways around killing and gutting.

instead of eliminating war, we've actually calculated how much we can kill with a chain reaction from a neutron bomb. much deadlier than “greek fire”
J
last edited on July 14, 2011 4:02PM
reconjsh at 8:34PM, April 4, 2007
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I joined and served the army on active duty from 1998-2002 and then the national guard from 2002-2006.

I agree with what Priceman said… after 9/11, I couldn't go buy a car without someone offering to help me pay for it or take a poo and someone wanted to whip my booty out of gratitude… it was crazy. But, I remember what it was like from when I joined till Sept 10, 2001… it was the same “I don't give a shit” attitude that exists today… no worse, no better. Some people cared… but not like it was for a year or 2 after 9/11.
last edited on July 14, 2011 3:02PM
kyupol at 5:51AM, April 5, 2007
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I truly don't give a damn about any of that. Special treatment and stuff isn't the reason I signed up. I joined to do what needed to be done, period.

So I'd take it you're a patriotic american. Thats good, since America as a whole,seems to have a lack of it. And patriotism is one of the values that a country needs in order to be successful.


The thing with people though… is they think you agree with your leaders and that imperialistic oppressive greedy war in the middle east.

I dont agree with your leaders. And I pity American soldiers for the bad image they get from the American public. Like cmon. Why fight a war when people arent thanking you? Why defend the people who would give you the cold shoulder and spit on your face (saw that news about a woman arrested who spat on a US soldier?)

I dont agree with people like Bush. They're just fuckin manipulators. No different from Osama.

Bush = manipulate american youth into ideas of patriotism, heroism, serving the country, valor, defending freedom of the iraqi people, defending liberty, etc… etc… etc… IN ORDER TO MAKE HIM AND HIS FAT CAT COHORTS RICH WITH IRAQI OIL.

Osama = manipulate muslim youth into ideas of martyrdom, jihad, killing all infidels, etc… etc… etc… IN ORDER TO ESTABLISH AN ISLAMIC EMPIRE IN THE MIDDLE EAST. Al quaida wants to remove ALL the middle eastern governments and unite the whole area into an Islamic Empire. Which I doubt will happen, since ALL middle eastern states despise Al Quaeda. Including Iran and Syria. Not only states, but other insurgent groups in iraq.

Therefore, Al quaeda will NEVER achieve its dream of an islamic empire… with all those odds stacked up against them.


Therefore, no need for US troops in Iraq. No need to fight for greedy elite and an ungrateful American public.

All this war is gonna do is kill patriotic Americans like you. And sooner or later, America will have a shortage of patriotic Americans.


And then time to learn to speak Chinese or convert to Islam. For the rest of the subjects of the American empire. :)



Anyway, thats just my 2 cents. Take it with a grain of salt if you wish. :)
NOW UPDATING!!!
last edited on July 14, 2011 1:25PM
subcultured at 5:57AM, April 5, 2007
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Someone
So I'd take it you're a patriotic american. Thats good, since America as a whole,seems to have a lack of it.

where did you get that from? or is that your own opinion?
J
last edited on July 14, 2011 4:02PM
Roguehill at 7:24AM, April 5, 2007
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I signed up in 2003, and I've got to say that almost every time I have to be somewhere in uniform, someone usually thanks me for volunteering to serve. Of course, I live in the South, which is usually a bit kinder than other places.
Hmm…I wonder if it could be the uniform. I mean, being in the Navy, our uniforms are typically more traditional than say, the Army. I usually don't go around in desert camo. Could it be that when a civilian sees you wearing desert camo, they think that you must be in favor of the Middle East Wars?

Hmmm..

GHOST ZERO
last edited on July 14, 2011 3:09PM
wesxcomix at 1:11PM, April 5, 2007
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I am a member of the USAF, and yes I have noticed the shift as well. No longer is there a great deal of rallying support. That, I guess, is not important to me. We still need to do our jobs the way we have always done them. Our brothers in arms are fighting hard over in the desert, and WE will always be behind them. So what if the media had lost interest and the general public is tired of the war, we still need to fight it, finish it, and come home.

Besides war is not for glory, it is to secure our empire and protect our freedom! At the end of the day, that is all that matters.
last edited on July 14, 2011 4:48PM
Phantom Penguin at 4:59PM, April 5, 2007
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This has happend to me also. I was getting off the plane from Iraq in Texas, i was still in damned DCUs and someone called me a baby killer.

Recently i was jumped outside of a bar because i was in the service and if it wasn't for the fact that soldiers never roll without backup i would have been badly hurt.

I was never in the service before the war started so i don't know how it was back then, but one thing is for sure, it can't get much worse then it is now.
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:42PM
Phantom Penguin at 5:03PM, April 5, 2007
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kyupol
I truly don't give a damn about any of that. Special treatment and stuff isn't the reason I signed up. I joined to do what needed to be done, period.

So I'd take it you're a patriotic american. Thats good, since America as a whole,seems to have a lack of it. And patriotism is one of the values that a country needs in order to be successful.


The thing with people though… is they think you agree with your leaders and that imperialistic oppressive greedy war in the middle east.

I dont agree with your leaders. And I pity American soldiers for the bad image they get from the American public. Like cmon. Why fight a war when people arent thanking you? Why defend the people who would give you the cold shoulder and spit on your face (saw that news about a woman arrested who spat on a US soldier?)

I dont agree with people like Bush. They're just fuckin manipulators. No different from Osama.

Bush = manipulate american youth into ideas of patriotism, heroism, serving the country, valor, defending freedom of the iraqi people, defending liberty, etc… etc… etc… IN ORDER TO MAKE HIM AND HIS FAT CAT COHORTS RICH WITH IRAQI OIL.

Osama = manipulate muslim youth into ideas of martyrdom, jihad, killing all infidels, etc… etc… etc… IN ORDER TO ESTABLISH AN ISLAMIC EMPIRE IN THE MIDDLE EAST. Al quaida wants to remove ALL the middle eastern governments and unite the whole area into an Islamic Empire. Which I doubt will happen, since ALL middle eastern states despise Al Quaeda. Including Iran and Syria. Not only states, but other insurgent groups in iraq.

Therefore, Al quaeda will NEVER achieve its dream of an islamic empire… with all those odds stacked up against them.


Therefore, no need for US troops in Iraq. No need to fight for greedy elite and an ungrateful American public.

All this war is gonna do is kill patriotic Americans like you. And sooner or later, America will have a shortage of patriotic Americans.


And then time to learn to speak Chinese or convert to Islam. For the rest of the subjects of the American empire. :)



Anyway, thats just my 2 cents. Take it with a grain of salt if you wish. :)

This had nothing to do with anything of the topic. All it did was bash everything from the government to the war and then compareing the president to the worlds most wanted man, i mean come on. Why reply if it has nothing to do with anything?
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:42PM
subcultured at 5:32PM, April 5, 2007
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the military is just a cog, you have to get the job done. if there was anyone to blame heavily, it would be the people in washington that makes the decisions.

most soldiers aren't in wars because they like to kill and die…they want to serve the country for a just cause. but if that cause is bent, blame the people that were elected.

you can't blame the machine for exercising the operator's will
J
last edited on July 14, 2011 4:02PM
reconjsh at 9:27AM, April 6, 2007
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subcultured
the military is just a cog, you have to get the job done. if there was anyone to blame heavily, it would be the people in washington that makes the decisions.

most soldiers aren't in wars because they like to kill and die…they want to serve the country for a just cause. but if that cause is bent, blame the people that were elected.

you can't blame the machine for exercising the operator's will
And a lot of soldiers are there because there's good money in soldiering.

To quote Sabbath “War Pigs” Politicians hide themselves away. They only started the war. Why should they go out to fight? They leave that role to poor.


Anyways, I don't think it's as bad as penguin said (but in no way do i doubt his stories)… there's still a fair amount of patriotism. I have a disabled vet license plate and i get horn honks and thumbs up on occasion. And in my daily life there's plenty of vets and not so many hippy protestors… so i have yet to be called a baby killer on my way to the american legion or something.

But, I have seen some bad stuff. Sigh, I'm starting to think that I may hate America.
last edited on July 14, 2011 3:02PM
Phantom Penguin at 4:23PM, April 7, 2007
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Well iam in Kentucky. Around Shepardsville and Louisville the KKK comes out to mess with us.
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:42PM
SpANG at 6:54PM, April 7, 2007
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I have respect for soldiers, but it's the same respect I would have for Fire Fighters, Police, or any other people that decide to put their lives on the line to do what they think is right.

That said, a lot of people in this nation do not think that the Iraq war is right. Couple that with the Guantanamo Bay incident, the total disregard for the Geneva Convention, the skewering of several American rights for the ‘fight against terror’, and the general distrust for the Bush Administration.

Unfortunately, to a lot of people right now, you guys personify the above. It may or may not be true, but ultimately these are your bosses and you are working for them, not us. If you were working for us, you'd all come home.

I have a brother in law that is in the military. I have friends that have also been to Iraq. I seriously don't know what to say to them anymore without starting a fight. And that's no good.

As I said before, I respect you for risking your life for what you think is right. I just don't think that your belief is correct.

EDIT/// I should also point out that the decision to downplay of the war by the media is pretty obvious right now. We are losing, and there's an election soon.
“To a rational mind, nothing is inexplicable. Only unexplained.”
last edited on July 14, 2011 3:52PM
Ronson at 11:31PM, April 7, 2007
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The biggest problem right now is that there isn't a clear objective. The fight against “insurgents” and “terrorists” isn't something the military can do easily. When our troops concentrate in any one area, the enemy just lays low or pops up somewhere else.

As long as we're going to be the world's last superpower, we need citizens to serve in our armed forces, and for that they should get the respect from the rest of us who won't put our lives on the line like that.

BUT

This war and subsequent occupation makes no sense, and it hasn't since the start. The idea that the best way to deal with a nutty dictator who might someday, somehow, possibly aquire some dangerous weapons was to pull his entire government apart and recreate it out of whole cloth – it was nuts. Many experts said that before the war even started.

Add to that the fact that our government had no problem overtly contradicting the rules of combat and interrogation and there's no surprise that no one is happy about the situation.

So now our soldiers are stuck in the middle of a sectarian civil war that never had to start. Some are given vague or illegal orders that contradict their training - if they had ever been trained properly for this type of combat.

But the idea that this occupation is something that our soldiers can win – how? How do you tell two religious fanatics to stop trying to kill eachother?

Then there's the money. Holy crap. We are at nearly half a trillion for this war and occupation. If we actually had the money, can you imagine what that would have bought? Healthcare for all! No one starves for a few years! But we didn't have the money in the first place, and our debt is just skyrocketing. But keep those tax cuts in place, because even though they have had a negligible affect on our economy they can't be removed because then the rich people will stop spending money…or something.

Our armed forces are almost certainly the most skilled, best trained and most professional servicemen in the world (except for language skills, that's really biting us in the butt). But the mission they're on isn't one that they can succeed in, because there are precious few assigned to dipolomacy and training and way too many assigned to kick in doors and shoot first and ask questions.
last edited on July 14, 2011 3:10PM
Phantom Penguin at 9:02AM, April 8, 2007
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Well saying soldiers are violating the “rules” of combat a foggy area. Personally put rules on something as disgusting and horrible as war is just plane dumb, because they are never followed.

But i agree we are loosing. You can't occupy a country that doesn't want to be. I mean ask the british, how many times has this happend to them over the last hundred years?
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:42PM
lothar at 5:50AM, April 9, 2007
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subcultured
the military is just a cog, you have to get the job done. if there was anyone to blame heavily, it would be the people in washington that makes the decisions.

most soldiers aren't in wars because they like to kill and die…they want to serve the country for a just cause. but if that cause is bent, blame the people that were elected.
that whole statment is such a cop out .
members of the US armed forces are allowed to vote are they not?
here we are in Iraq trying to spread “Democracy” and it looks like we don't even know WTF Democracy IS !

subcultured
you can't blame the machine for exercising the operator's will
THIS is disgusting ! almost like something you would have heard a Nazi officer saying at the Nuremberg trials .

did the soldiers at abu ghraib just have to “get the job done”?
heres something they could have done - it's called Conscientious objector status.

last edited on July 14, 2011 1:45PM
SpANG at 7:35AM, April 9, 2007
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lothar
members of the US armed forces are allowed to vote are they not?
here we are in Iraq trying to spread “Democracy” and it looks like we don't even know WTF Democracy IS !
I agree with SOME of this. As a citizen, I (currently) have the right to speak out about my government. But, to be fair, in a time of war* a military official is not allowed to speak out against the commander and chief. In fact, they can be prosecuted and/or discharged for it. By speaking out, even in retirement they risk their pension, military benefits or even worse. It's pretty difficult to get an unvarnished opinion from a military official.

Yes, people in the military can and do vote. This is their ‘silent voice’ for telling the government what they think. But elections only come every 2-4 years and the military is still stuck with enforcing the will of the current elected officals between these times. It's a tough place to be if you don't agree, I would guess.

* Note - Although Bush and Co. would disagree, there is no war in Iraq. The government has been defeated, and new leaders have been put in place. This is now an occupation.
“To a rational mind, nothing is inexplicable. Only unexplained.”
last edited on July 14, 2011 3:52PM
subcultured at 7:45AM, April 9, 2007
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military as a democracy doesn't work
“hey guys, lets vote if we wanna go over that hill across the trenches, in the hail of gunfire. say aye!”

orders are given and followed, if every army personel stops and doesn't feel like killing…then the war is lost. it's a dirty job, but the other side is just as fevor, since they are loosing the war.

the terrorist aren't gonna one day say in the middle of the battlefield “i'm tired of killing, i vote we just let peace reign”


I made the point that the instrument is as good as it's operator. the nazis were evil bastards and they made thier instrument as evil as them. the armies that fought to free the people in the concentration camps were also used, but the operator was inacting a good will mission.

besides, i know of stories were some northern korean concentration camp gaurd who “didn't get the job done” and they and thier whole family became prisoners. you think the nazis were so fair (bieng that they burned people alive) that they accept a Conscientious objector status? give me a break.

the people…(not the soldiers) need to vote leaders who looks out for the well bieng of it's people (and soldiers) and not some major conglomerate. hell, people should have know GW was gonna plunge this nation on a warpath crusade for black gold.

now i wish Al Gore would have won, maybe he would have planned to better the world and couldn't cut funding on NASA, alt energy, and protect the soldiers from a needless war.
J
last edited on July 14, 2011 4:02PM
Phantom Penguin at 9:07AM, April 9, 2007
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One thing as is contantly bored into your head as a soldier is ‘you defend a democracy, we are not one.’ When soldiers are allowed to get in groups and disagree with higher ranks the military doesn't work. They call us ‘soldiers’ for a reaon. We follow orders. We have no place to question them unless they are unlawful. Elections you are right are our silent protest. Because its unlawful for us to say anything against our higher ranks, and the president is the commander and cheif therefore a higher rank then I.

We have rights. But its something you sacrifice when you enlist.
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:42PM
Priceman at 11:05AM, April 9, 2007
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Phantom Penguin
They call us ‘soldiers’ for a reaon. We follow orders. We have no place to question them unless they are unlawful.

Sadly, this is too true. Unlawful orders or LOAC (Law of Armed Combat) Violations, or UCMJ (Uniform Code of Military Justice) violations are the only justification for disobeying or questioning orders.

Phantom Penguin
We have rights. But its something you sacrifice when you enlist.

I can't say that I completely agree on this one. I think that it's true that we give up alot of things by enlisting, but rights are not one of them. At least not all of them.
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:47PM
Phantom Penguin at 11:13AM, April 9, 2007
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I worded that wrong. I should have said we sacrifice a few rights. Not all of them.
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:42PM

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