Tuesday, May 30, 2006


Support the Troops

Kung Fu Monkey says what needs to be said to the 101st Fighting Keyboarders, and says it brilliantly.

Our relationship with the troops is based on the idea that we are asking them to risk their life. Implicit in "risk" is a ratio of threat to preparation, a judgement of danger to the possibility of a positive outcome.... It is only a risk, however, as long as there is support. I call bullshit if one refuses to pay for bullets, refuses to pay for bullet-proof vests, and then asks a patrolman to run into a blind alley filled with heavily armed bank robbers. The risk changes into something else when we ask others to face danger with nothing from us in return. Then risk becomes blatant sacrifice, sacrifice on an altar of our comfort. [...] If you fail to even make that tiny effort -- hold the Bastards accountable -- to insure the troops the material, planning and care they need, then no matter what you say, what you write, or how many flags you wave, you are not supporting the troops.... You have broken the covenant. With this relationship broken, the soldiers are no longer your proxies, they are your instruments. You are treating them as tools. You may not feel that way, that characterization may fill you with rage, but how else to characterize such one-sided relationship? There is a goddam world of difference between asking a man to risk his life to defend the nation and waste his life proving a point. That these unquestioning war devotees will not sacrifice their lives, their comfort, their safety: that's hardly a sin in modern society. But they are not even willing to risk emotional discomfort by admitting their faith has been misplaced. That they will not even risk this, this tiny, tiny thing ... that is the sin. It is not that that you're not risking your life. It's that you are risking nothing.
Unfortunately, it's almost certain that even if those "unquestioning war devotees" read the essay, they'll much likelier nitpick it apart than recognize the truth of it. But maybe a few people who've been inclined to make excuses for the chickenhawks will see their way to rejecting them.
That is so well put, spoken with mathematical clarity. Bravo.
Well put indeed. It should be a no-brainer that "support the troops" includes "don't throw their lives away". But of course, the "support the troops" yellow ribbon crowd aren't supporting the troops, they're supporting the Bastards in Suits. I especially liked how KFM made the distinction.
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