Friday, July 29, 2005

War in the eyes of Man

Someone recently asked me what I feel are the masculine aspects involved in WAR. I emailed them back and thought that I would share with you all my thoughts on this subject as well.

I think that war is about power and what is more manly than to kill with your own hands another being? History tells of bloody wars full of glory where we slaughter each other for some reason or other which seemed important at the time.

Men can't get enough of war (especially those controlling the war who never have to fight), the politicians and generals especially because they give the commands. Nobody questions them and they become gods even if only for a moment or for a single battle. War is about being right and ask any man if he would rather be right or understood and most of your answers from them will be that they would rather be right (myself included), what is more right to men that the old saying that might MAKES right?

The only men who seem to hate war are those doing the actual slaughter and whose hands run red from the blood of others, for they are really the only ones who know the true cost, not in dollars or equipment, but the price you pay with each piece of your soul, just look at how many homeless war vets you have out there whose souls are so shattered by the wars they fought that they can no longer function, now look and tell me if you can find a single homeless soul shattered politician or general who started that war? Nope? I figured.

59 comments:

Anonymous said...

Amen.

Mark said...

I just found your blog on the web. After reading through a handful of postings and comments, I feel obligated to provide my two cents.

I am prior service and a family man(Army-Artillery (King of Battle - hoora!:))). I know the feeling of being away from home. Twelve months may seem like forever, but it is relatively short in the full scope of life.

I enlisted during my senior year of high school. While other graduates were thinking about college, I was thinking about boot camp, etc. It's been roughly 15 years since I've been out. Looking back, my experience in the service changed my life for the better.

I graduated college, got married, had children and now work in the field of information technology. I wanted to give something back to the troops, so I created an online scrapbook for the troops and their families called BabySoldier.com (http://www.babysoldier.com/scrapbook/). Within the last few days, I created a memorial site for troops (http://www.babysoldier.com/).

Your experiences today will forever shape your life. Learn from them and grow ... take the best and leave the rest ... you will be a better person in the end!

Take care and God Bless!

Kate said...

I'm so glad you're back blogging, Zach, though I wish you were blogging from your home with your kids asleep in the next room and your wife by your side. I know; not soon enough.

Take care and stay safe my friend --

Anonymous said...

RIGHT ON ZACK ATTACK!!!! and i truly feel that men should not be asked to go to war unless the country is truly under threat BECAUSE it is such a horrific experience. we should not ask our soldiers to make that sacrifice unless it is truly necessary. babe you know jim just told me recently he has dreams still 2-3 times a month where he wakes up in a sweat with missles coming up at him or flak that he's trying to dodge. and thats what 30+ years of this? he also has told me repeatedly that iraq is worse than viet nam because there is NO SAFE REAR AREA. everywhere is the front, no place can you relax, 24/7. so imagine what scars can come from this unecessary war on a country that was no threat to us that 51% of the american people now believe that our leaders lied us into. stay strong zack its 6 more months, mark off the days on your calendar it will pass. xx linda HEY HEY HEY ZACK ATTACK!!!

Anonymous said...

Factoids
-General Westmoreland faught in WWII,
-General Swartzkoph faught in Vietnam.
-General Eisenhower faught in WWI
- General MacArthur faught in WWI
- General Powell faught in Vietnam.
- General Franks faught in Vietnam
-70% of Vietnam vets say they were proud to serve in Vietnam
- 60% of Vietnam vets say they would enlist again
- >70 % of military voted for Bush
- most anti-war proponents; students , elitist, journalists, Hollywood personnel, and college professors, never faught in a war.

Come home you need the rest.

Kate said...

Hey Anonymous -- most of the proponents of the Iraq war have never fought in a war, and most never served in the military at all: Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld, Rice, Wolfowitz, etc. etc.

How does that fact fit into your list?

Anonymous said...

Some more factoids:

General Westmoreland lost in Vietnam.
General Powell lost in Vietnam.
General Franks lost in Vietnam.
100% of Vietnam vets lost in Vietnam.
Dubya showed his single greatest moment of intellectual clarity by weaseling out of going to Vietnam.

Maybe if a few more soldiers, politicans and their cheerleaders read a little more history (e.g. about how Britain lost in Iraq too after WWI, how the French got forced out of Algeria etc), they might be a little less keen to send other people's sons off to die in foreign neo-colonial adventures like Vietnam or Iraq. And what's an "elitist" anyway, somebody who can read and think for themselves?

Here's a few words from an "elitist" who served in the British army in WWI:

The Bishop tells us: "When the boys come back
They will not be the same; for they'll have fought
In a just cause: they lead the last attack
On Anti-Christ; their comrades blood has bought
New right to breed an honourable race,
They have challenged Death and dared him face to face."

"We're none of us the same!" the boys reply.
"For George lost both his legs; and Bill's stone blind;
Poor Jim's shot through the lungs and like to die;
And Bert's gone syphilitic; you'll not find
A chap who's served that hasn't found some change".
And the Bishop said: "The ways of God are strange!"


Siegfried Sasson, 1916.

It sounds like nothing much has changed, except now it's Bush and not the Bishop. If war was so great, the politicans would keep it all for themselves.

Peace and safe home-coming to all in Iraq.
Taff

Anonymous said...

"A politician is a fellow who will lay down your life for his country."

(quote attributed to somebody called Texas Guinan?)

Fabi said...

Hey Zach great post!!!!
You just forgot to say some few words, all the people who will make money trough the war is loving it, don't matter if is military or civilian, many people will become rich thanks to this war and thanks to another wars, war is money and power, exactly what every man wants...
I remember not the only the sensitive and really human soldiers hate the war as you Zack, the civilians who are in the war zone and can't run away from it hate it too, the children will always carry the memories of the war and will grow up with anger...
I lived in a war zone for 13 years of my life, in Colombia, so i can tell you that not only the soldiers hate the war the civilians too, the good civilians not the ones who are part of the war

Sfc Popelka said...

Zach,

How much money will you make off of your "Book Deal" when you get back?

Frank Puma said...

Taff,

General Westmoreland lost in Vietnam.
General Powell lost in Vietnam.
General Franks lost in Vietnam.
100% of Vietnam vets lost in Vietnam.


You sound like you are VERY Pleased that we lost in VietNam. Do you want us to lose in Iraq as well? Would that also please you?

Anonymous said...

Taff,

how the French got forced out of Algeria.


No great mystery here!

Hurria said...

"Do you want us to lose in Iraq as well?"

You have already lost in Iraq. You just haven't figured it out yet. But the real losers in this Iraq adventure are Iraq and its people. There was never any outcome of this latest U.S. aggression that could possibly be positive for them.

AnimaNera said...

the people who have never been to war will never understand everything about it. only those who experience it firsthand (and their families/loved ones) can see it clearly. i come from a family of soldiers. my grandfather and father served in the army for more than 25 years each. some of my uncles are still active in service. most of them have experienced attacks (not big wars though..except for my gramps who fought in ww2). my grandmother, my mother, my aunts, my sister, and my cousins know what it's like to be when the men of our family are off to someplace, fighting for honor and country. i almost signed up for the army. maybe someday i will...

i think people should give more credit to soldiers. kudos to you sir and may you be blessed!!! :-)

Snag said...

frank puma,
Tell me what a "win" in Iraq will look like.
The reason we "lost" in Vietnam is because we didn't understand or respect the enemy (which were really just a large partion of the population). These sorts of conflicts are being sold by this adminstration to the U.S. and the world as some sort of black and white, John Wayne affair. But the reality of this sort of conflict is that they are more complicated than can be hashed out at the dinner table.
Let's take the rightness or wrongness of our presence in Iraq off the table for a moment. Tactically it is a big mistake to use regular units to fight unconventional forces. And when those unconventional forces are local, know the terrain better, have local sympathy, and are willing to sacrifice themselves to further their agenda, it makes a "win" virtually impossible. Maybe if we used a lot more military and police forces to forcefully supress a good deal of the population could we keep some sort of order.
Oh wait...that's already been done.
We won't win there because we won't respect the mind of this culture. We keep viewing them as something other than us. We devfeat ourselves with our own arrogance. We have an impassioned/irrational American population, supporting an overly simplistic adminstration backed by forces that have an economic interest (KBR/Halliburton), who dictate the fight, and do not take council with warriors who understand fourth generation war.

Too bad the one's calling the shots in the "war on terror" don't know s#$t and are using our fear to further their agendas. The ones on the ground who do know a thing or two aren't allowed to open their mouths.

David and Goliath isn't a religious story, it's a lesson in tactics.

Michael Corleone: I saw a strange thing today. Some rebels were being arrested. One of them pulled the pin on a grenade. He took himself and the captain of the command with him. Now, soldiers are paid to fight; the rebels aren't.
Hyman Roth: What does that tell you?
Michael Corleone: It means they could win.

Anonymous said...

While the "Entertainers of 2005" have been in all of the news media lately, I would like to remind the people of what the entertainers of 1943 were doing, 62 years ago. Most of these brave men have since passed on.

In contrast to the ideals, opinions and feelings of today's "Hollywonk" the real actors of yester-year loved the United States. They had both Class and Integrity. With the advent of World War II many of our actors went to fight rather than stand and rant against this country we all love. They gave up their wealth, position and fame to become service men & women, many as simple "enlisted men".

Here's a list of but a few. From this group of only 18 men came over 70 medals in honor of their valor, spanning from Bronze Stars, Silver Stars, Distinguish Service Cross', Purple Hearts and one Congressional Medal of Honor.

Here are the Real Hollywood Heros;

Eddie Albert (Green Acres TV) was awarded a Bronze Star for his heroic action as a U. S. Naval officer aiding Marines at the horrific battle on the island of Tarawa in the Pacific Nov. 1943.

Earnest Borgnine was a U. S. Navy Gunners Mate 1935-1945.

Charles Bronson was a tail gunner in the Army Air Corps, more specifically on B-29s in the 20th Air Force out of Guam, Tinian, and Saipan.

James Doohan ("Scotty" on Star Trek) landed in Normandy with the U. S. Army on D-Day.

Charles Durning was a U. S. Army Ranger at Normandy earning a Silver Star and awarded the Purple Heart.

Clark Gable (Mega-Movie Star when war broke out) Although he was beyond the draft age at the time the U.S. entered WW II, Clark Gable enlisted as a private in the AAF on Aug. 12, 1942 at Los Angeles. He attended the Officers' CandidateSchool at Miami Beach, Fla. and graduated as a second lieutenant on Oct. 28, 1942. He then attended aerial gunnery school and in Feb. 1943 he was assigned to the 351st Bomb Group at Polebrook where he flew operational missions over Europe in B-17s. Capt. Gable returned to the U.S. in Oct. 1943 and was relieved from active duty as a major on Jun. 12, 1944 at his own request, since he was over-age for combat.

Alec Guinness (Star Wars) operated a British Royal Navy landing craft on D-Day.

Charlton Heston was an Army Air Corps Sergeant in Kodiak.

Brian Keith served as a U.S. Marine rear gunner in several actions against the Japanese on Rabal in the Pacific.

Lee Marvin was a U.S. Marine on Saipan during the Marianas campaign when he was wounded earning the Purple Heart.

Audie Murphy, little 5'5" tall 110 pound guy from Texas who played cowboy parts? Most Decorated serviceman of WWII and earned: Medal of Honor, Distinguished Service Cross, 2 Silver Star Medals, Legion of Merit, 2 Bronze Star Medals with "V", 2 Purple Hearts, U.S. Army Outstanding Civilian Service Medal, Good Conduct Medal, 2 Distinguished Unit Emblems, American Campaign Medal, European-African-Middle Eastern Campaign Medal with One Silver Star, Four Bronze Service Stars (representing nine campaigns) and one Bronze Arrowhead (representing assault landing at Sicily and Southern France) World War II Victory Medal Army of Occupation Medal with Germany Clasp, Armed Forces Reserve Medal, Combat Infantry Badge, Marksman Badge with Rifle Bar, Expert Badge with Bayonet Bar, French Fourragere in Colors of the Croix de Guerre, French Legion of Honor, Grade of Chevalier, French Croix de Guerre With Silver Star, French Croix de Guerre with Palm, Medal of Liberated France, Belgian Croix de Guerre 1940 Palm.

David Niven was a Sandhurst graduate and Lt. Colonel of the British Commandos in Normandy.

Donald Pleasance (The Great Escape) really was an R. A. F. pilot who was shot down, held prisoner and tortured by the Germans.

Tyrone Power (an established movie star when Pearl Harbor was bombed) joined the U.S. Marines, was a pilot flying supplies into, and wounded Marines out of, Iwo Jima and Okinawa.

John Russell: In 1942, he enlisted in the Marine Corps where he received a battlefield commission and was wounded and highly decorated for valor at Guadalcanal.

Robert Ryan was a U. S. Marine who served with the O. S. S. in Yugoslavia.

George C. Scott was a decorated U. S. Marine.

James Stewart Entered the Army Air Force as a private and worked his way to the rank of Colonel. During World War II, Stewart served as a bomber pilot, his service record crediting him with leading more than 20 missions over Germany, and taking part in hundreds of air strikes during his tour of duty. Stewart earned the Air Medal, the Distinguished Flying Cross, France's Croix de Guerre, and 7 Battle Stars during World War II. In peace time, Stewart continued to be an active member of the Air Force as a reservist, reaching the rank of Brigadier General before retiring in the late 1950s.

Pat Tillman, although he was not a movie star, gave up a promising football career and his life to defend our country.


So how do you feel the real heroes of the silver screen acted when compared to the hollywonks today who spray out anti-American drivel as they bite the hand that feeds them? Can you imagine these stars of yester-year saying they hate our flag, making anti-war speeches, marching in anti-American parades and saying they hate our president?

I Sure couldn't!

Frank Puma said...

Snag said...

Tell me what a "win" in Iraq will look like.


Do you want us to lose in Iraq as well?

Answer this question, and I will answer yours.

Anonymous said...

simple answer:

WWII was a righteous war fought with sound strategy

this one isn't

Snag said...

Puma,
Did you even read what I wrote? It's not a question of winning or losing now.
But first to answer your question, if we're going to engage in war, of course I want to "win."
And that's the crux of my prior post.
What the hell is a "win" and how is that objective achieved? If anyone who knew anything about fourth generation warfare was in charge and not guided by another agenda, they sure as hell wouldn't reduce these issues to simple minded arguments of black and white. If you think we're fighting terrorism in Iraq, you're bent. Terrorism knows no boundry. Terrorism is an idea that no boarder guard can stop. It is a method of fighting by those who are not nescessarily affiliated with any region. It is an evil that can posses the soul of those both in the East and the West (Tim McVeigh, The KKK, etc.).
I spent years studying enemies and operations, doctrines and tactics, while in the military and after.
The electorate's Disneyland version of how to win wars sold to us by the pitch and catchy jingle of this current government just doesn't jibe with reality. We're swinging in the dark at anything that goes bump in the night with a two-by-four because they've scared the bejesus out of us (at least a good portion of the American population). Hell, anyone with a rudimentary knowledge of combat/conflict knows you provoke an enemy to commit when they're off balance.
As always, there are those who would rather buy their parties line rather than listen to folks who know this s#$t. Makes 'em all warm an fuzzy inside. We've got a nation of folks having pissin' contests in the school yard when there's a real war going on, with very real consequences.
I'm also just about sick and tired of seeing former troops (current troops can't speak their mind by decree) dumped on because they're calling this adminstration out for what it is.
So to those who haven't learned how to follow a great American tradition of governing themselves, those that support the annoitment of another King George, keep at it. Just don't come crying to me when it bites you in the ass (again).

Again, particularly to anon who posted the comparison of WWII to Iraq (?!?!?), this is from another one of those radical Americans that hate our country:
"The President is merely the most important among a large number of public servants. He should be supported or opposed exactly to the degree which is warranted by his good conduct or bad conduct, his efficiency or inefficiency in rendering loyal, able, and disinterested service to the Nation as a whole. Therefore it is absolutely necessary that there should be full liberty to tell the truth about his acts, and this means that it is exactly necessary to blame him when he does wrong as to praise him when he does right. Any other attitude in an American citizen is both base and servile. To announce that there must be no criticism of the President, or that we are to stand by the President, right or wrong, is not only unpatriotic and servile, but is morally treasonable to the American public. Nothing but the truth should be spoken about him or any one else. But it is even more important to tell the truth, pleasant or unpleasant, about him than about any one else." - Teddy Roosevelt, 1918
Sorry Zach, I really should take these lengthy comments off your site.

Anonymous said...

"Sorry Zach, I really should take these lengthy comments off your site."
Excellent idea.

Anonymous said...

Snag for President!

Anonymous said...

Snag Said...

Now, soldiers are paid to fight; the rebels aren't.


Rebels have nothing left to lose except life itself. So as long as they wish to fight, lets help them lose that as well.

Since we are quoting from the movies now here's one for you:

"It Is Only After You Have lost Everything, That You Become Free To Do Anything".

What we are trying to do is give them enough security to build their country as they want it. If they really wanted freedom from US occupation, the best thing they(Rebels) can do is to is to stop fighting long enough for the US to get out. Then they could vote and elect themselves into office and make their country what they want it to be.

But they wish to see the US leave with a "Bloody Nose" which we had already gotten on 911. Rebel or not it is never "Tactically Sound" to stay and fight against a superior force.

Since they do, it means they are not reasonable people. And as long as they wish to fight then we should give them one.

If we have to kill them, so be it, until there is no enemy, but Peace!

Snag said...

We should "stay and fight" insurgents when there are terrorists out there?!?!
What twisted logic is this?
"Rebel or not it is never "Tactically Sound" to stay and fight against a superior force." Now that's archaic, 3rd generation war thinking. It's not tactically sound for "regular" type combatants.
Where do the insurgents fight? In urban centers.
Historically, what had the military considered urban areas? "No Go" terrain.
Why "No Go"? Because a tactically inferior force can exponentially multiply its power of attack.
These are not typical "rebels", there are many that will sacrifice their own life in the delivery of a weapon.

Anecdote: I used to play OpFor (opposition forces) in my duties training comabt MP's. 7 of us in an attic with light, conventional weapons (assualt rifles only) wiped out a platoon and a half as they tried to assault the building we were training them in. And these were MOUT (Mil. Ops - Urban Terrain) specialists.
Please, support the "War on Terror", but just don't have anything to do with tactics or policy. You're going to get every one killed.
Once we can get Shrub and his jokers off the back of the military, maybe we can go find actual terrorists.
Murphy's Law of Combat: "Never share a foxhole with anyone braver than you."

Anonymous said...

As a mere civilian, I know nothing about the finer points of military strategy, except that we Brits lost every liberation struggle against "insurgents" that we tried to fight in the last 100 years, and Israel (founded by terrorists) is still creating more "terrorists" than it kills every day in Palestine with the same tactics the US is employing in Iraq. But you guys might enjoy the story of the "Millennium Challenge" war games staged in 2002 by the US against an un-named Middle Eastern enemy. The US forces had all the hi-tech weaponry, a massive fleet, airpower etc etc. The enemy had some small boats, old planes and motor bikes.

But despite this, the "enemy", led by retired Marine Lt General Paul Van Riper, was winning. So the US forces complained, changed the rules and claimed a "US" victory, even though Riper's forces had just wiped them out.

Here's a news report on the exercise: http://www.guardian.co.uk/international/story/0,,778070,00.html

And here's an interview with the General himself: http://www.guardian.co.uk/g2/story/0,,786992,00.html

I don't know what this tells you about the technicalities of strategy and tactics. But it probably tells you all you need to know wbout the military bureaucracy and current US administration. Or you could go read "Catch 22" again.

Enjoy.

Taff

Anonymous said...

The end in Iraq will come when we have withdrawn. The Shi'a majority will take control, slaughter the Sunni minority and establish a Islamic republic just like Iran's. The Kurdish north will be occupied by Turkey, as they have no desire to see an independent Kurdistan. The "best" is yet to come, folks.

-roamer in mich

Anonymous said...

Oh, and I forgot to add one thing. It will ALL be Bill Clinton's fault.

-roamer in mich

Anonymous said...

Unfortunately the administrations definition of a "win" is far from what Iraqis, the United Nations, or the world community would define as such.

Ideological blindness, military might, and stupidity - not an idyllic mix.

- The U.S. has attempted to privatize almost all Iraqi industry, a direct violation of the Geneva Conventions, but hey ExonMobil is thirsty for new resources.
- In the tense calm after the initial invasion, U.S. forces occupied a school in Fallujah. When the townspeople protested PEACEFULLY in a march, U.S. soldiers killed more than a dozen protestors. A second protest resulted in two more deaths. Any wonder that Fallujans joined the Resistance?
- Think back. What ministry did the U.S. protect during the invasion and shortly thereafter. Oh right, it was the Oil Ministry. Wonder why that was.
- Who insisted on an electoral process? No, it wasn’t the U.S. government. It was Sistani who realized that under the heel of U.S. occupation, Iraqis were to have almost no rights.

The list goes on and on and on.
Any wonder that the situation is dire. The U.S. invaded under totally false pretenses. Although Iraq posed no serious threat to the U.S., tens of thousands of civilians have died. According to a recent report, since the invasion U.S. TROOPS HAVE KILLED far more civilans than have the Resistance. (U.S. troops are responsible for 37% of 25,000 deaths, or over 9,000. the resistance less than 10%, i.e., less than 2,500) (see http://www.cnn.com/2005/WORLD/meast/07/19/iraq.bodycount.reut/ and http://www.commondreams.org/headlines05/0725-01.htm

So let’s see, electricity, water, security are scarce or non-existent. The U.S. has tortured Iraqis with more instances under wraps. The Iraqi secret service is totally out of control, with people tortured, beaten, and jailed without due process. The U.S. has attempted to privatize the entire economy in a neo-conservative’s wet dream (hey, it would be called pillage folks in another time and place). Violence is endemic. The U.S. has fanned the flames of identity politics in which groups have been pitted against each other (either intentionally or via the stupidity of U.S. actions).

It’s a royal f—k up and while total immediate withdrawal wouldn’t be pretty, a mid-course could be set.
1. Apologize to the Iraqi people and acknowledge the false pretenses under which the country was invaded.
2. Promise to close ALL U.S. military bases and withdraw ALL U.S. military personnel and contractors by a date certain.
3. Set up funding to pay for war damages, torture, and the many thousands of civilian deaths… to be administered by the U.N.
4. Acknowledge the gross violations of the Geneva Convention (not only in terms of human rights but) in terms of the neo-con privitization wet dream and allow Iraq’s economy (socialist or otherweise) to rebuild itself by ending the bullshit laws on privitization imposed by Bremer and company.
5. Listen to Sadr and the one million Iraqis who have asked for U.S. withdrawal.
5. Impeach Bush and the other ideologues who (as the Brits well understand) fixed the intelligence and manipulated the country into this war.

Stephan

Frank Puma said...

Snag Said

We should "stay and fight" insurgents when there are terrorists out there?!?!


It's hard to believe this one got by you, the military "Expert". The Terrorists and the Insurgents are one and the same.

archaic, 3rd generation war thinking

Are you saying that you would go toe to toe with a superior force?

Every time the "Enemy" has tried to go head on with us, they have failed miserably and died in the process. So they are reduced to trying to sucker punch us and running away when we go after them.
Their best bet is to plant IED's and wait for us to find them the wrong way. Or lob a mortar an hope for a hit.

I have not yet heard of any reports on Al-Jazeera or anywhere for that matter, of returning victorius platoons or even a fire team of Terrorists having beaten a US platoon. If you have, let Al-Jazeera know, I'm sure they could use it in their daily broadcast. Maybe some of you could get your 15 minutes in too.

As a military "Expert" *you should know that training is only good until Real bullets start flying, then all that sh*t goes out the window.

I once knew an Air Force Sgt. who said of the young army soldiers "What a bunch of crazy F**kers, willing to go shoot and get shot at. But thank god for'em, we need them". As for my foxhole, I would share it with anyone who is not the enemy, or a Coward!

Taff

*No one ever said the brass was perfect. They can be downright stupid at times as you have pointed out, but we are there now and leaving is NOT AN OPTION until they have a country that is theirs. This means a Constitution, a Police and Military force of their own to secure their country. It worked for Germany & Japan, it will work here too.

-roamer in mich...

It will ALL be Bill Clinton's fault


It will when we have to fight the Chinese, Since your Billy Boy Gave them our missile technology.

Stephan

Ideological blindness, military might, and stupidity - not an idyllic mix.


Obviously, but neither is...
Ideological Obsession with criticizing anything the administration does,

Hatred of the Military and hope that it will fail,

And the Stupidity of thinking that you folks have the moral high ground.


We have plenty of oil in Anwar and off the coast of California, but the EPA will not let ExonMobil go get it.

During the 80's three major oil companies Chevron, Exxon, & Shell, wanted to drill for the oil at Anwar, the EPA said they had to come up with proven technology to get it without harming the environment, and only then could they drill. These 3 companies pooled their money spent billions of dollars and created the technology to get the oil without harming the environment. What do you think the EPA said... NO!

Iraq posed no serious threat to the U.S.

Iran & Israel bombed Iraq on 7 June 1981, as did the Coalition air raid ten years later on 17 January 1991. Both air raids, and many more, were specifically designated for the destruction of Iraq's nuclear weapons program infrastructure that was KNOWN to have existed.

As I look in the direction of Iran and Syria, The real question is where did the WMD's go?

It was serious enough threat for Iraq's neighbors, and it is serious enough for me.

Electricity and water are being restored daily, according to my engineer friends who are OVER THERE now.

And your Neo-Socialist midcourse points will happen only in YOUR wet dreams!

Anonymous said...

Mr Puma,

Is it possible that while the majority of Iraqi insurgents are fighting for what they see as the liberation of their country (as you might too in their circumstances), the extreme Islamists actually need US forces in Iraq? As long as your forces are stomping around Iraq, blowing up their cities, killing their people, selling their assets off to Bush's cronies, the swivel-eyed crazies in Al-Qaida have the perfect recruitment tool. The recent London bombings were in part prompted by Britain's role in Iraq, and Saudi and Israeli studies of wannabe jihadis have shown that the majority of them were inspired by the US/UK occupation of Iraq. There are a billion Muslims in the world - do you want to fight them all? You're having trouble finding enough cannon fodder for the current Occupation-Lite. You can't find/kill all the crazies (where's Osama, eh?), but you can stop providing them with excuses and recruitment propaganda. Right now this war is not just killing Iraqis (after all, we don't count them - literally), it's creating the foundations for generations of suffering due to terrorism and extremism East and West. Quit while you're already behind, why don't you?

As for WMDs, the entire world knows they were never there (at least not in the last 10 years), they were just a fantasy excuse to launch a war that had been planned years ago, as they will be when the US government suddenyl "discovers" evidence of WMDs in Iran or Syria. In fact the only WMDs in the region are the ones in Israel. You want to bomb Tel Aviv? Good luck.

Taff

Frank Puma said...

How do you propse we deal with the cockroaches when the run back into Iraq & make a nest of it again?

Shall we meet them with Nuclear force? Because it will be too late to go in and clean it out again.

Do you think the UN can negotiate them into good behaviour?

What about Sanctions, or a blockade? That didn't seem to work before, what makes you think it will now?

So what would you do?

I know this, You cannot allow the roaches to build a nest. Because you will have to work twice as hard at killing them later!

anon may be right, unfortunately,

If we have to kill them, so be it, until there is no enemy, but Peace!


So again, without the anti-administration rhetoric, what would you do?

Anonymous said...

Frank Puma says: "It was serious enough threat for Iraq's neighbors, and it is serious enough for me."

Yeah, and another thing: Iraq's immediate neighbours are Iran, Syria, Jordan, Kuwait and Saudi Arabia. The last Gulf War proved that Iraq had better not threaten those paragons of democracy in Kuwait/Saudi (home of Bin Laden and the head-loppers - sounds like a sinister Islamist rock band, huh?), and historically the main threat was obviously to Iran, which had gone through a long and bitter war against Iraq while we still supported Saddam (Rumsfeld was in Baghdad the day Iraq started gassing Iranians on the battlefront). Now your neo-con (I prefer "neo-fascist" - it matches their modus operandi) pals are threatening Iran and Syria, which leaves Jordan - does anybody out there care about Jordan?

Frank, the only "neighbour" the US administration cares about is Israel, and anyone who's travelled around the Occupied Territories, as I have, might have doubts about whether nuclear-armed ethnic-cleansing Israel really deserves - or needs - our concern, especially if it's going to cost thousands of US soldiers' lives, and tens of thousands of Iraqis. I can assure you that if our poodle Prime Minister Tony Blair had asked British forces to go off and fight for Israel, he would have got a pretty blunt response. Hence the fantasy WMDs.

Have you never read "1984"?

Sorry, Zach. I'm blog-hogging...

Taff

Anonymous said...

The "cockroaches" didn't make the nest. We did. There were no active Islamist terrorists in Iraq prior to the invasion, except for the ones in the Kurdish "safe area" that was under our control. Plenty of people warned our governments this would happen, but they invaded anyway, and even the CIA now admits this is exactly what has happened.

You military guys will know better then I that "divide and conquer" is a useful strategy. But not if you divide the bulk of the Iraqi population and prevent them engaging with the terrorists that we have helped to plant in their midst. As long as many Iraqis feel obliged to resist the illegal and devastating occupation of their country, they will be too busy - and perhaps less inclined - to fight the minority of extremists we all want to see defeated.

What would I do? Why not listen to the Iraqis you claim to be trying to help? Get out of their country so they can start to re-build it the way they want.

Snag said...

Puma,
It's hard to believe this one got by you, the military "Expert". The Terrorists and the Insurgents are one and the same.
That's where you're absolutely wrong. What a load of misinformed crap. It's this kind of two dimensional thinking that's gonna keep getting us f#$ked up. These are two seperate operators, methodologies, and motivations. It's this inability to discern the nuance of motivation that keeps us from fighting with the approprate methods. "Terrorist" is a tactic and idea, not a person. Before we invaded, we had a contained, viscious thug state and we had a seperate religious extemist enemy. Now we have banded both of them together and multiplied their forces.

As for my foxhole, I would share it with anyone who is not the enemy, or a Coward!
Or an idiot.

So they are reduced to trying to sucker punch us and running away when we go after them.
And that's exactly what they're doing, time and again. And guess what, regardless of the rightness or wrongness of anything, this takes its toll on the military and public opinion. This is exactly how the Viet Cong were able to undermine our efforts in Vietnam. I personally have no problem with the idea of destroying Hussein. But we sure got out priorities screwed up and now have dug ourselves a pretty nasty hole.

I have not yet heard of any reports on Al-Jazeera or anywhere for that matter, of returning victorius platoons or even a fire team of Terrorists having beaten a US platoon. If you have, let Al-Jazeera know, I'm sure they could use it in their daily broadcast. Maybe some of you could get your 15 minutes in too.
You a@#$ole. Are you suggesting I'm a traitor?!? After serving fo 11 years and 3 conflicts?!? It's disgusting to suggest that anyone who might have other ideas in this great, free land of Liberty of ours is less than patriotic. Statments like that defile what this country stands for. But I'm not suprised as members of this adminstration have even been quoted defiling the memory of WWII vets and the war they fought. The elephant above the flag.
As for these folks celebrating after a "victory" it just goes to show you how much you just don't know about the fight. Just as SOFA doesn't get into the news, neither will insurgent or islamic radical operatives. Glory is what they sell to the kids, job satisfaction is what the specialists get.

Sorry for the ad hominym and vitrol, but by God theres a faction in this country that's hidden behind viscious words and decetful ideology for too long and it pisses me off. This is our flag, this is our country, and it's high time we stop letting them get away with questioning our patriotism because we actually will say "the emporor has no clothes."

Now Puma, again, I apologize for reducing this to a schoolyard, name calling exercise. But until your prepared to stop it yourself by the absurd suggestion that if anyone questions the way things are they're somehow against America, I'm not going to debate with you. It's clear that you don't want to discuss policy and tactics. It's clear that all you want to do is call names like they do on the playground to undermine any discussion about what we should and should not be doing. It's clear that it is now you that hates America, now that the majority of people believe the invasion of Iraq was a mistake.

I support the troops. This means that I want them back home to regroup so we can review and revise our tactics and mission and go fight the real enemy with the appropriate forces. There is no "loss" on a strategic scale for the military if we get out of Iraq now. This is an ongoing mission that needs to change its tac. Iraq was the wrong place at the wrong time.

Zack, I'm going to make this my last extensive comment. Sorry for hogging your forum. If anyone is interested, I'll be posting more in depth about what really needs to be done in the WOT on my own blog.

Anonymous said...

Puma,
The WMD's were never there in the first place. The sanctions worked. WMD's in Iraq circa 2002-03 were simply a neocon lie. You need to see the BBC program called "The Power of Nightmares". It is a very powerful program and will show you the truth. I recommend this program to anyone who seeks the truth.

-roamer in mich

Anonymous said...

Well, this is my first time here and I have to say Snag, Puma and a few others have very strong opinions and beliefs. I respect the fact that they are vocal and honest in their message, but maybe they should step back and take a break. Log-out if only to catch their breath. Mind you this is only a recommendation. I am still pondering how I should weight in on the discussion. You see I am a father with two sons in the Army, one is in Kuwait and the other leaves for Iraq tomorrow. I've come looking not for answers, but for understanding and common ground. Remember it's nice to have a voice and to be heard, so it's in your best interest not to alienate others. I hope to come across you guys again when the smoke has cleared.

Pat

Frank Puma said...

Snag Said...

What a load of misinformed crap.

"The Terrorists and the Insurgents are one and the same".

By the definition of terrorism, They Are!

By their actions, are they not trying to change the outcome of the formation of the new Iraq government, as many on both sides have suggested?


You a@#$ole. Are you suggesting I'm a traitor?!?

"Maybe some of you could get your 15 minutes in too."

I don't know. Do you feel that you fit into this category?

It is hard for one to tell, based on some of the anti-administration, anti-military, anti-war rhetoric posts here. It seems to be the fashionable trend here to be in with the anti-anything crowd, to join the naysayers, and call those who don't tow your line, Neo-this & Neo-that.

It is you who are impuning me for not having ideals in line with your own.

By the way Snag, Thanks for your service to our country, if you can accept that, coming from me.


by God there's a faction in this country that's hidden behind viscious words and deceitful ideology

I actually agree with you here but only on the pretense. This faction became evident when Kruschev, during a speech, took of his shoe and pounded the heel on the podium and said "We will defeat you from within". The soviets knew they could not keep up with the pace of the cold war, and that Importing Socialism to the US, where it had the freedom to continue its work was the only answer.

Now I can hear the screams of McCarthyism from many of you, but think of it, Thanks to the ACLU we may no longer be able to say GOD in the pledge of allegiance. And the ten commandments are next on the extinction list. Some people are actually opposed to the idea of being in control of their retirement funds, or getting more of Their tax money back! Many people are afraid of their own 2nd amendment rights! Is this what America is supposed to be???

Even the Chinese are trying to create a weird blend of capitalism and socialism for themselves now.


It's clear that you don't want to discuss policy and tactics.

Discussion, Is that what you do here? I have mistaken this for a political partisan administration bashing forum. I haven't seen any real useful policy or tactical ideas yet. Just partisan posturing.


It's clear that it is now you that hates America

No Snag, I do not hate America, just the lies of political partisan politics.

If we can all drop the partisan politics, a Real discussion can take place.

-roamer in mich

Thank you for the program suggestion, I will investigate it.


I am only a guest here, but Welcome to the blog Pat.

------------------------------
For Those Of You Who Think Its Time To Quit.....

On The Plains Of Hesitation Lay The Blackened Bones Of Countless Millions Who, In The Final Moments Of Victory, Lay Down To Rest, And In Resting Died.

-Gen George Patton

Anonymous said...

Pat,

Good point. Hope your sons come home safely.

Taff

Snag said...

Puma,
Thanks for taking a higher ground on this response. I do mean that and I responded less than eloquently. While we most certainly have fundamental differences in ideology, these can actually be reasoned out if we both drop the rhetoric and get to the debate.
I will first concede that the insurgents are using terrorist like tactics. However, during my service if I were attacked as a soldier I would consider the attackers enemy combatants. When they specifically attack civilian targets with no tactical value with the intention to sway opinion, that to me is terrorism by definition.
We really shouldn't call locally grown attackers in Iraq terrorist. First as an example - the U.S. fighting forces can't be terrorized. Second, when they are of the land regardless of their methodology, we have to concede that however errronous their methods are that they are speaking politically regarding their own representation and how they want to be represented.
I hope you will take a moment and wonder why those on the "left" seem so impassioned about the issues (as I would ask those on the left about the right). Even if their ideology doesn't agree with yours, could you concede that they may actually care about the future of the nation and the world and are vocal in doing so?

Anonymous said...

No one is a "winner" in this or any war as long as lives are lost. We could argue whether or not this is a "valid" war until we're blue in the face. Nothing we say or do can change the sad fact that we have lost too many brave soldiers in Iraq and elsewhere. What's important now is supporting our troops while they're there and getting them home SAFELY and QUICKLY. As for the politicians, well...we all know they're not about to risk their OWN lives in Iraq, now are they?

Zach -- I know you'll make it home safely to your beautiful family and be a stronger, better man in the long run because of your experiences. What an amazing wife you have, taking on all the responsibilities herself and being strong for you every day. God bless you and your loved ones.

~C

Frank Puma said...

Snag,

You have raised some good valid points here. I agree with you on most of these issues more than you might think and I have no doubt that the left cares about the direction of our country. I just think that when they do not inject politics into their talking points, they are taken more seriously. And therefore can become better role models for the promotion of free thinking.

Again Thanks for your service to our country, I appreciate your efforts in protecting it.

Frank.

Anonymous said...

Found your weblog from a newspaper website. I always hoped there were
conscientious, three-dimensional human beings serving in the Army. Not
the myopic, right-wing net-neandrathals who've cut their teeth on FOX
News and Rush Limbaugh.

Hope you arrive safely back home into the loving arms of your family.
US had no business invading Iraq and now our presence is only exacer-
bating and prolonging the sufferring of the Iraqi people.

The American people have to decide, whether protecting our ego is more
important than admitting our 'mistake' (I call it a crime) and ending
this fiasco.

ariadne said...

Zach,
I stumbled onto your site and was really glad I did. Thanks for posting this. You've got another reader out here cheering for your safe return to your wife and kids.

Snag said...

Puma,
I think you mean if the left doesn't inject rhetoric into their talking points. And of course I would say the same for the right. But it's the politics themselves are the driving force as to why the country has responded the way it has.
To give you an idea as to where I'm at, while I'm definitely not "right" I wouldn't nescessarily fall into the "left." I think politicans as a whole like to make up these designations so we end up at each other's throats. Divide and conquer.
I consider myself more of a progressive populist with strong libertairian tendencies. I'm supportive of good business and entreprenuership, but strongly anti-corporatist. I strongly believe the government works for the people and not the other way around. I have no problem with taxes so long as they are used to benefit the people and are not wasted, but of course I would always like to pay less. I feel the government has as it premere responsibility to protect the liberties of each person, ensuring that those individual liberties do not infringe on the rights of another.
No, I'm not running for office. I say this because I want to illustrate that the so called "left" and the so called "right" are really closer in their views than the manipulators want us to believe. We get so far astray in our own rhetoric (I know I can in particular), that we don't band together and take control of this juggernaught known as the government.
They've grown way to accustomed to telling us what to think.

We all want less intrusion in our personal lives
None of us want to pay anymore taxes than we have to, yet we all want a government that uses those taxes wisely and for the betterment of the country
We all want an effective, fair judicial system
We all want to be told the truth about major issues rather than have it spun for political power and gain
We all want to stand under that flag and feel good about its ideals
We all want a country that truly can be a role model for the rest of the world
We all want to be safe

Let's stop making compromises on our integrity, dump our political parties, and put the fear of God into the government and those who try to bully or buy it.

Frank Puma said...

Snag,

Much like yourself, I do not tow any particular party line. But I see too much of the UnFounded accusations flying around, about the administration these days. (of course there are those on the right that fling poop, as well).

I think the most effective arguments are based in sound logic with an appropriate amount of serious objective research put into the issues. Otherwise, people are just parroting what they have heard and blindly towing their party lines.

While I have been critical of some of the posts here, I am in no way endorsing everything the administration does. I believe the message I am trying to render is, If we are going to be critical, then lets do the research, and find the Objective Rock Solid evidence to display for everyone to see. And then maybe pose a realistic feasible solution.

A constructive criticism based in sound logic and thorough research is hard to refute.

I think it was Ben Franklin who said "believe 0% of what your hear and 10% of what you read, and then go find out for yourself"

Most all of us want the same goals as you have listed. If we all focus on our mutual goals, then how we acheive them should be of little consequence.

Snag said...

Maybe there are some unfounded accusations against the administration going around. However, it's the ones that have some substantiation that really concern me.
For example and one of the most troubling is the whole Rove-Plame thing. Regardless of Wilson's political angle, you just don't deal in potentially classified information. Not intentionally and not by accident. I have a particular interest in the intelligence community as that was my field while I was in. Bush really needs to do the right thing and see that anyone who had anything to do with this, either intentionally or accidentally, is removed crime or not.
If I had ever accidentally left a security container open and someone not qualified was purusing the unclassified material among the classified stuff, I couldn't just say "oops, sorry" and all would be forgiven. They'd have my head...my ass...and whatever else they would want to throw into the fire. As it should be.
As the old adage says, "It's the bigger man that can admit his mistakes."

Frank Puma said...

I agree that covert operative identities should stay covert, but I think that in Rove's case, a reprimand should be given and not termination.

After all if you left sensitive material laying about, you would most likely be reprimanded and not discharged completely.

If we allow the lefties to set termination as a precedent, then we will be firing people every week for stupid things like parking tickets, and library fees.

I do think that the administration should avoid any appearances of impropriety, Example: by picking another company besides Haliburton, to provide services to troops. Unless Haliburton is the only company that can provide the particular service, they should not have been picked.

I just hope that the appropriate punishments are given to the appropriate individuals, once the investigation is complete and the responsible parties are identified.

Whomever is guilty should be punished accordingly.

Snag said...

Hmmm...
If I failed to secure sensitive information, yes I probably would have caught hell and been repremanded.
However, if I failed to keep secure classified information or if I had overheard information and from that it had either caused or contributed to the exposure of that information to the public, I actually would have expected at the minimum to lose my clearence. Mor probably would expect at least a little time in detention if I was involved in any way with information becoming public and/or falling into the hands of the enemy, especially strategic level information.
It is made vary clear what the consequences are for failing to safeguard information. Even information that one is isn't aware is classified is still subject to the similar controls.
By his own account, Rove's role in this incident is much more than repremandable. Playing so loosey-goosey with information would for any other person be considered criminally negligent even if no actual intent to discuss that information was established.
Also, while I favor protecting journalists' ability to keep goverment in check by questioning and reporting to the people on its activities, I also have issues with them spreading information of this nature. Especially when the CIA told one of the reporters explicitly not to use the information regarding Plame.
It really seems a case of "do as I say, not as I do."

Anonymous said...

Anybody else find it slightly ironic that one of the journalists making such a big "stand" over journalistic ethics and hiding the source of the Plame leak is the same journalist who parrotted Pentagon BS regarding Iraqi WMDs so enthusiastically?

Anonymous said...

Dear Zack,
I understand your plight as far as fatherhood goes. I am in the process of going into the Army ten years after I left the Marines. I felt the rage of millions on the day of 9/11. I wrote an essay about, but will spare you its' entirety. All I will write is this " The legacy of men and war is this: "I will do this to spare my little one's innocent eyes. I will see the nightmares everyday of my life, if I have to, so you won't have to." In short, warriors in Iraq will do what warriors have always done. They don't fight for the reasons they are sent... they fight for each other. To preserve each other's lives. Their brothers in arms. Whether they be the enemy's warriors, or the guy sitting next to them powdering his feet. I understand the crux of your situation. Do NOT lose heart my friend. I myself do not know you from a hole in the wall, but from the single post of yours' that I've read I know that you are a great Dad, whether you are in Iraq or Home. The spirit that a Father instills in hsi children must be the building blocks upon which consciencious, knowledgable, and compassionate humans are built. I hope that your children appreciate you, your knowledge, but most of all your humanity. And I hope that they learn from you, and become even better. Isn't that the point of being Dad? LOL Come home safe, feel life in every breath, every smile or tear they make, and make the life you have always envisioned.

Frank puma said...

Snag,

I was reading your blog the other day and noticed in one of your threads that you made referrence to the Clash.

I didn't know they had a film documentary for the band. I found and purchased it at:

http://www.elusivedisc.com/prodinfo.asp?number=SONDV50234

The Clash were a favorite band for me during my high school years. A few of my fav songs were:
Clampdown,
Train In Vain, (High school & Girlfriends - don't you know)
Red Angel Dragnet,
Ghetto Defendant - I remember when they performed this one on a late night talk show here in the US, David Letterman I think,
& Of course,
Rock The Casbah.

I wish they were still together.

RIP Joe Strummer, we sure could use someone like you now.

Frank Puma said...

Snag,

I found this video clip while doing some research:

http://www.freedomunderground.org/memoryhole/pentagon.php#Main

It raises some valid questions as to what really did hit the pentagon. And as to the actual whereabouts of the boeing flight that is thought to have done so.

Snag said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Snag said...

Frank,
No offense, but I'm suprised you like the Clash considering they were (especially Joe) social democrats. They were strongly questioning of the U.S. and G.B.'s foreign policies (especially with regard to Central America). Many of their songs had dual meanings.
They're the guys that drove it home that being a real tough guy for me means defending my fellow man; that protecting the dignity of people all over the world only enhances me; that govenments like to play on our fears to protect their own power over us; that they like to keep us divided so we don't pull back the curtain and start asking really tough questions.
"Quiet, I am the Great and Powerful Oz!"

Clampdown (labor issues and the conservative trends in England at the time)
Red Angel Dragnet (guardian angels and street crime issues, the uselessness of fighting crime without fighting poverty)
Ghetto Defendant (Urban and poverty issues, drugs(heroin) and the black market)
Rock The Casbah (while actually about one of their producers, they made side references to the issues of the middle east as far back as '81).

Frank Puma said...

Snag,

My musical tastes are wide ranging indeed!

There is a little (or alot) of truth in the lyrics of most (if not all) music. but then isn't that what drives a musician to write songs in the first place?

Although each listener will interpret music as differently as there are listenters, some musical statements just simply ring true.

Some of the other music I grew up on:

Pink Floyd, Black Sabbath, Rolling Stones, Van Halen, Deep Purple, Blue Oyster Cult, CCR, Janis Joplin, Steppenwolf, MotorHead, Hendrix, The Beatles, Steeley Dan,

Music Styles:
Punk, Jazz, Rap, Country, Acid, Grunge, Classical, Pop.

And so this doesn't look like a music add, I'll just say, You name it.

While not agreeing with all the messages found in music, I can certainly appreciate the spirit that goes into it's creation.

Frank Puma said...

Snag,

I'm really suprised that you are into the martial arts, since you abhor violence so much. Unless it's just the self defense aspect of it that interests you.

Incidentally I'm all for self defense. There was a good movie called "Self Defense" but it had little to do with the martial arts, have you seen it?

Frank.

Snag said...

Frank,
It's true, I don't like violence, but I think you are confusing me with a pacifist. I never said I abhor violence (I actually do, but maybe not in the way you percieve those who oppose violence).
This is a common mistake with the rhetoric that's being thrown around lately by those that would keep us divided. This is part of the adminstration's deception. They are selling the idea that our problems are black and white, and those that are left leaning etc. are somehow questioning because they are cowards.
Ask yourself...could it be that maybe there are some serious problems with our actions that lead to the questioning?
My boss who served two stints with the Marines, fought at Wey (Hue) City, and trained recon absolutely doesn't like our involvement in Iraq. There are a lot of military coming out and saying it's wrong. Are they all pacifists? Hardly, but they are willing to question.

There are those who oppose all war...I respect that if they do not believe out of dogma.
There are those who oppose the Iraq war...I respect that if they do not believe out of dogma.
There are those who support the Iraq war...I respect that if they do not believe out of dogma.

As the facts build up though, it seems more and more clear that this is a conflict of some other agenda than anything this adminstration has stated.
I supported our fight in Afghanistan, but even that is being mismanaged right now.
If the adminstration had said "Uh, sorry folks. In our distorted, self serving foreign policies of the past, we supported Hussein and we helped him to power. He is clearly a bad guy hurting people and we are going to kill him now" I would have been more likely to support this action, so long as we had a clear and decisive exit strategy.

As for my history with violence:
I was very good at soldiering when I served. Expert with the M16, M60, Granades. I spent time training Urban Warfare, working with Rangers, SF, LRS, Terrorism Counter-Action, Counter Insurgency, Refugee handling...
I was a bootboy, Skinhead Against Racial Predjudice (SHARP) growing up.
My current job often requires me to use force against criminals.
I'm studying a mix of Wing Chun Kung Fu, Jeet Kun Do, and hoping to learn Keysi Fighting Method, along with Tai Chi for meditation. Maybe some Kendo soon.
I'm telling you, those that oppose war are not nescessarily afraid to fight.

But, I respect those that are pacifists as much I respect those who are true warriors.
There's a diffence between a pacifist and a coward.
There's a difference between a warior and a bully.
What I abhor is innocent lives being lost.
I abhor the not quite so innocent lives being lost for a wrong cause.
I regret the loss of life of the guilty.
I absolutely cannot stand bullies. They are cowards who talk tough, but when faced with a true fighter easily crumble.
I feel my talent, knowledge, and proclivity towards violence obligates me to help my fellow man avoid violence.
There needs to be voices that show real power is the ability to avoid violence. Real power comes from the knowledge that it is easy to kick someone's ass, it is easy to pull a trigger, it is easy to incite...it is difficult to bring people together to work out their differences and come to understand and accept one another.
Most people's intentions are good, but can be easily misguided and manipulated to serve and protect those in power.
Realize that your own beliefs can be (as well as mine) manipulated to support agendas that maybe you wouldn't normally agree with.

Frank Puma said...

I have always had the instinctual belief that of any two opposing ideas or arguments, the truth can be found somewhere in the middle. I also respsect beliefs not born of dogma, since it would come from within the individual, and not neccessarily be tainted by outside influences. I often ask people in my life who may hold opposing views "Why" they believe as they do. This not only gives me insight to their charachter, but brings us closer on the human level.

I have often thought that it may have been best & how things might have played out if we had made the removal of Saddam our priority for being in Iraq. Many of my friends have said they would have respected this tact more than the current reasons for being there. Nonetheless the objective would still be the same; a Free Iraq with its own free government.

Since I feel I would fit into the Warrior category, I have come to respect the idea of civilizations that have "Casts". That is, groups of individuals who's main purpose is that of Doctors for instance. Or Scientists.

I think Japan was once a Cast civilization, Although I may be wrong. This might make acceptance of one another easily acheived. You are born into your cast, you spend time as an apprentice training, and then you serve in your cast. On the surface It sounds like a socialist society, but I do not believe it is. It would be interesting to see what flaws & problems such a society would have compared to our own.

Well, enough of my ramblings. I think that most of us can agree that the thinking individual is a credit to his society, and a good role model. I would put you in this "Cast" sir.

AufWiederLesen.
Frank

Anonymous said...

What do you think about this:

http://www.cnsnews.com/ViewSpecialReports.asp?Page=\SpecialReports\archive\200508\SPE20050817a.html

???

Anonymous said...

The only men who seem to hate war are those doing the actual slaughter and whose hands run red from the blood of others, for they are really the only ones who know the true cost...

I disagree. A good many of us hate war and have never had our hands bloodied. But, then there are those of us who have lost a great deal in war...www.ssg-ewc.us