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jhain Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-28-05 07:51 AM
Original message
Walking Wounded ( look at the source)
January 31, 2005 issue
Copyright 2005 The American Conservative
http://www.amconmag.com/2005_01_31/article1.html

Walking Wounded

Old soldiers dont fade away

by Fred Reed

The observant will have noticed that we hear little from the troops in Iraq and see almost nothing of the wounded. Why, one might wonder, does not CNN put an enlisted Marine before a camera and, for 15 minutes without editing, let him say what he thinks? Is he not an adult and a citizen? Is he not engaged in important events on our behalf?

Sound political reasons exist. Soldiers are a risk PR-wise, the wounded a liability. No one can tell what they might say, and conspicuous dismemberment is bad for recruiting. An enlisted man in front of a camera is dangerous. He could wreck the governmental spin apparatus in five minutes. It is better to keep soldiers discreetly out of sight.

So we do not see much of the casualties, ours or theirs. Yet they are there, somewhere, with missing legs, blind, becoming accustomed to groping at things in their new darkness, learning to use the wheelchairs that will be theirs for 50 years. Some face worse fates than others. Quadriplegics will be warehoused in VA hospitals where nurses will turn them at intervals, like hamburgers, to prevent bedsores. Friends and relatives will soon forget them. Suicide will be a frequent thought. The less damaged will get around.

For a brief moment perhaps the casualties will believe, then try desperately to keep believing, that they did something brave and worthy and terribly important for that abstraction, country. Some will expect thanks. But there will be no thanks, or few, and those quickly forgotten. It will be worse. People will ask how they lost the leg. In Iraq, they will say, hoping for sympathy, or respect, or understanding. The response, often unvoiced but unmistakable, will be, What did you do that for? The wounded will realize that they are not only crippled, but freaks.
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Ironpost Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-28-05 07:56 AM
Response to Original message
1. The reality of madness passed as war
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Inland Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-28-05 08:10 AM
Response to Original message
2. It's the conservatives who see soldiers as suckers, pawns
The neocons and prowar advocates are the source of the treatment of our Iraqi vets as suckers, people whose asses belong to them because they made the mistake of trusting our government, to be used and thrown away like a tissue.

The "sound political reasons" aren't just tactics. They are actions borne in the deep feeling that our soldiers don't count except to the extent they are useful, militarily and politically, to Bush's imperial plans.

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amber dog democrat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-28-05 08:37 AM
Response to Reply #2
4. All the more reason to avoid military service.
" We reserve the right to refuse service to you "... let Saigons be bygones "
as Kinky Friedman once said.

Some other war, some other time, maybe.


If we ever are invaded, here's my phone number... but only after the Chimp regime is gone first.
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glarius Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-28-05 08:37 AM
Response to Original message
3. There was one on Nightline las night and Koppel put him down when he
asked "why are we still there when there were no WMDs?"....This poor soldier was in a wheelchair, with only one leg...He said something about the many casualties they had suffered and was more or less saying they shouldn't still be there....Koppel just cut him off by saying "in world war 2, we did not use a body count to decide the outcome" (not exact words)....It was disgusting!...Koppel does this all the time...He pretends to be "fair and balanced" but he always makes sure Bush does not get hurt too badly.....He's a disgrace to journalism!
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amber dog democrat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-28-05 08:39 AM
Response to Reply #3
5. He's just another media whore.
I don't doubt that he and his network are fearful of offending - lest they be too truthful.
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SnowGoose Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-28-05 08:46 AM
Response to Original message
6. Let's start *asking* to hear them...
the *one* thing media cares about is money. That trumps all else.

If they get the idea that active duty soldiers in Iraq (perhaps with identity obscured/voice distorted), just talking about what they're experiencing and thinking, would be a huge ratings-grabber, then it'd be on the tube.

That'll only happen if someone makes it happen.
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AnnInLa Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-28-05 09:22 AM
Response to Original message
7. kick
The whole article is worth a read....am just confused why it is published in the AmCon? Am not familiar with the website..is it "old-time-conservative" or winger-conservative?
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jdj Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-28-05 09:26 AM
Response to Original message
8. "a conspicuous dismemberment is bad for recruiting."
Edited on Fri Jan-28-05 09:27 AM by jdj
Jesus H. Christ.

that is offensive.

I understand where this is coming from, but the fact that that phrase in particular comes so easily is repulsive.

"The wounded will realize that they are not only crippled, but freaks. "


and on tv "for he who sheds his blood with me today will always be my brother."

When the fuck is the culture of war going to go out of style? Who can possibly crave this shit? Is it something like bellbottoms that always comes back in style eventually?
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xpat Donating Member (295 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-28-05 09:30 AM
Response to Original message
9. I sent this article to
Edited on Fri Jan-28-05 09:34 AM by xpat
a disabled Vietnam veteran I went to high school with. He had sent me a scathing letter about my anti-Americanism after our last class reunion, when I had announced that I was working to get the Bush Crime Family jailed.

From the tone of his letter it was clear that all he wanted to do was vent his rage and frustration on me, so I didn't reply for over a year. Then, when I read this letter, I had an 'ah-ha' moment.

That was Tuesday, so I haven't had a reply, yet.
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mordarlar Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-28-05 09:35 AM
Response to Original message
10. The whole article gave me chills.
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scarletlib Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-28-05 12:38 PM
Response to Original message
11. Excellent Article
Bitter in tone but oh so very true.
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jhain Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-28-05 04:14 PM
Response to Reply #11
12.  have written and asked Olbermann
to do a piece on vets....

this so called admin is screwing them over every day.
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