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MineralMan

(146,364 posts)
Wed Jan 29, 2014, 01:19 PM Jan 2014

One can honor military personnel without honoring war.

I have been opposed to all military operations in the Middle East for as long as I can remember. I believe, and have believed, that we have no business sending our military to that part of the world to deal with internal issues in the countries there. I was completely opposed to George W. Bush's decision to invade Iraq and Afghanistan at the time, and oppose our continuation of military operations there. I do understand that immediate withdrawal isn't the best way to leave, though.

However, President Obama's honoring of an enlisted man who had volunteered to serve 10 deployments was not honoring the war. It was honoring the service of one man as an example of all of those who serve in our military and are deployed to conflict areas. They did not start the conflict. They have nothing to do with the strategy of any military operations. They have, instead, joined the military for various reasons, and serve in the military as ordered by those who do plan the strategy. They are members of our military.

President Obama has overseen the end of our military involvement in Iraq, and is overseeing the end stage of our involvement in Afghanistan. How well he is doing that is open to discussion, of course. I would have preferred a more rapid drawdown in Afghanistan, for example, and believe we should already be out of there.

However, I do not make military policy, or any policy at all. Neither does the Sergeant who was honored at the SOTU address last night. Grievously injured, he has served honorably, and was rightly presented as someone who has served his country faithfully and at great cost to himself. Opposition to war in general or to individual wars does not have anything to do with honoring an individual who has served in our military.

My father piloted B-17s in WWII. He's 89 years old now. I have my own issues with strategic bombing, as it was carried out in WWII, and especially when civilian targets were bombed. My father flew some of those missions. He didn't plan any of them. He served as a pilot and flew his plane and crew in and back safely for over 20 missions, near the end of the war.

I disagree with the bombings, but not with my father's service. I disagree with our military operations in Iraq and Afghanistan, but not with the service of the injured man honored for his service by President Obama. Both served honorably in our military, as have countless others. All deserve honor. They are who they are. They are members of our military, and serve willingly and bravely.

It's fine to believe that we should not engage in military activities. It's fine to blame those who plan those activities and send our military personnel into harm's way. It is not fine to blame those who serve honorably. The President was right to honor this enlisted man, who paid a great price to serve. Those who stood and applauded the Sgt. are right to have done so.

80 replies = new reply since forum marked as read
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One can honor military personnel without honoring war. (Original Post) MineralMan Jan 2014 OP
Yes, exactly! Klukie Jan 2014 #1
Sure they can. Iggo Jan 2014 #2
No, ProSense Jan 2014 #3
As you see, I disagree with that attitude, MineralMan Jan 2014 #5
Indeed. nt bemildred Jan 2014 #4
I do not see it. PowerToThePeople Jan 2014 #6
I believe you are wrong. The history of humankind is one of MineralMan Jan 2014 #9
Ending conflict. How? End conflict. PowerToThePeople Jan 2014 #15
Then do that. Personally, I've never been in a position to MineralMan Jan 2014 #28
face-palm PowerToThePeople Jan 2014 #33
What makes you think I do not hold them responsible? MineralMan Jan 2014 #36
I agree with portions of what you said Victor_c3 Jan 2014 #42
Being used as a political prop is a dishonor IMO whatchamacallit Jan 2014 #7
So you want to protect this soldier from being used as political prop? el_bryanto Jan 2014 #8
His acceptance of the "honor" is one matter whatchamacallit Jan 2014 #12
LOL. JaneyVee Jan 2014 #14
Lol@thee whatchamacallit Jan 2014 #17
You were asked a bunch of questions and avoided them all. Kudos! JaneyVee Jan 2014 #21
Thank you for your comment. MineralMan Jan 2014 #10
Sorry you can't face the antiwar message in all this frazzled Jan 2014 #24
There should have been a moment of silence instead of all the applause quinnox Jan 2014 #11
He's not dead. That would have been weird. Did you watch the SOTU? n/t ProSense Jan 2014 #13
LOL Iliyah Jan 2014 #41
Applause is just part of the glorification and romanticizing of war. L0oniX Jan 2014 #55
So many of these issues are like Rorschach tests, you see what you are primed to see Fumesucker Jan 2014 #16
Oddly enough, when I see a military veteran with MineralMan Jan 2014 #19
Your support the troops sticker won't get you into heaven any more Fumesucker Jan 2014 #26
I'm also a veteran. MineralMan Jan 2014 #27
I've been seeing vets since the 50s demigoddess Jan 2014 #30
I see it exactly that way too. To me, this poor guy, who was so severly impacted is Jefferson23 Jan 2014 #64
"Many true things are said through false teeth." bemildred Jan 2014 #37
Toward the end of my USAF enlistment, in 1968 and 1969, MineralMan Jan 2014 #48
Good for you. I turned in my draft card. Again, nothing happened. bemildred Jan 2014 #57
...and we don't see the caskets anymore for a reason. L0oniX Jan 2014 #56
Some points about the introduction of Sergeant Remsburg frazzled Jan 2014 #18
Your points are very well made. MineralMan Jan 2014 #23
Very well said. HappyMe Jan 2014 #31
Most people who are upset seem to impute malevolent motives to the President. riqster Jan 2014 #35
+1. nt bemildred Jan 2014 #38
dainty sensibilities Skittles Jan 2014 #71
They should offend: that was my point frazzled Jan 2014 #76
sorry, NO Skittles Jan 2014 #77
Very true Exciting Trip Jan 2014 #20
Well said get the red out Jan 2014 #22
do we honor them for them or to make ourselves feel better leftyohiolib Jan 2014 #43
It doesn't make me feel better get the red out Jan 2014 #58
we? Skittles Jan 2014 #72
I figured get the red out Jan 2014 #78
we, as in stupid people Skittles Feb 2014 #79
All Americans should see the cost of war in the flesh the young we send there. Agnosticsherbet Jan 2014 #25
It was heartwarming. TheMathieu Jan 2014 #29
This: riqster Jan 2014 #32
Thank you. MineralMan Jan 2014 #34
As a Vietnam Vet . . FairWinds Jan 2014 #39
This soldier was not held up as a hero. MineralMan Jan 2014 #40
that maybe be, and i agree with u,but there is just so much talk of honor here leftyohiolib Jan 2014 #49
heros DustyJoe Jan 2014 #51
have you noticed Skittles Jan 2014 #70
This Afghanistan vet agrees with you. NuclearDem Jan 2014 #74
K & R Iliyah Jan 2014 #44
Thank you. MineralMan Jan 2014 #45
Yes Progressive dog Jan 2014 #46
I agree with you completely... (I posted this on another thread as well) giftedgirl77 Jan 2014 #47
Thank you for your powerful reply. MineralMan Jan 2014 #50
We can hope, thank you for standing up & speaking giftedgirl77 Jan 2014 #52
What percentage of vets would encourage anyone to sign up? L0oniX Jan 2014 #53
I'm not sure. I've recommended enlisting to MineralMan Jan 2014 #65
The only direction I have point anyone is to the Navy ship generation systems... L0oniX Jan 2014 #68
I know I wouldn't. NuclearDem Jan 2014 #75
Sorta like adieu Jan 2014 #54
I have a few observations gwheezie Jan 2014 #59
That's exactly right MrScorpio Jan 2014 #60
I respectfully disagree. gLibDem Jan 2014 #61
OK. Your opinion is clear. MineralMan Jan 2014 #62
That's perfectly ok. gLibDem Jan 2014 #63
I don't know why anyone bothers anymore Number23 Jan 2014 #66
Yeah and how many times does that happen? How about that they walk outside Rex Jan 2014 #67
yes, I do it MONTHLY Skittles Jan 2014 #69
If there was a draft, I would tend to agree Shankapotomus Jan 2014 #73
Fair enough. Try honoring Vietcong soldiers, as Jane Fonda did, and see what happens. redgreenandblue Feb 2014 #80

ProSense

(116,464 posts)
3. No,
Wed Jan 29, 2014, 01:28 PM
Jan 2014

you're only supposed to honor heroes and those who died.

http://www.democraticunderground.com/10024275344

http://www.democraticunderground.com/1002736013

A wounded soldier who is recovering should be hidden away, ignored by his President and ridiculed as a "prop" for accepting a invitation to be honored for his service and resilience.

 

PowerToThePeople

(9,610 posts)
6. I do not see it.
Wed Jan 29, 2014, 01:32 PM
Jan 2014

The symbolism of the "War Hero" is forever tied to WAR. The only way I could see it as honoring him vs trying to drum up more patriotism in the next generation of cannon fodder, would be if he followed with "And this will NEVER happen again. We are going to dismantle the Military Industrial Complex and bring all of our courageous young men home." This young man's life has been destroyed for the profits of the MIC and oil companies. Nothing more.

MineralMan

(146,364 posts)
9. I believe you are wrong. The history of humankind is one of
Wed Jan 29, 2014, 01:36 PM
Jan 2014

conflict. There has been no period of any great extent without conflict. While I do not like that, I do recognize it as part of human behavior. I do not expect conflict between nations and states to cease. I would love it if it did, but I do not expect it. So, we will have military and police in our societies. That will require people who serve in those organizations. Some will be injured and some will die.

Now, if you know of a way to end conflict, then you will have my gratitude for doing so. If not, then I will continue to honor those who serve honorably in our military. You might choose to do otherwise.

 

PowerToThePeople

(9,610 posts)
15. Ending conflict. How? End conflict.
Wed Jan 29, 2014, 01:41 PM
Jan 2014

We did not need to invade Iraq. We did not have to invade Afghanistan. We (a bunch of war mongering elected "representatives&quot CHOSE these actions. We created the conflicts. Both actions were 100% avoidable.

MineralMan

(146,364 posts)
28. Then do that. Personally, I've never been in a position to
Wed Jan 29, 2014, 01:59 PM
Jan 2014

end conflict between states. If you are, then please so so.

 

PowerToThePeople

(9,610 posts)
33. face-palm
Wed Jan 29, 2014, 02:08 PM
Jan 2014
MineralMan
28. Then do that. Personally, I've never been in a position to

View profile
end conflict between states. If you are, then please so so.


Are you F'ing serious? Why don't you hold those who are supposed to represent our interests responsible? From what I read of your posting, you have no issues with our Government conducting activities in direct conflict with what the public desires.

MineralMan

(146,364 posts)
36. What makes you think I do not hold them responsible?
Wed Jan 29, 2014, 02:13 PM
Jan 2014

As for "what the public desires," I've not seen any unanimity in public opinion for just about anything. I express myself through communication with elected officials. The ones I communicate with know who I am, since I helped them get elected. Most of those share my viewpoints on war. Here on DU, I discuss issues in public. You can read my thoughts freely here.

Victor_c3

(3,557 posts)
42. I agree with portions of what you said
Wed Jan 29, 2014, 02:50 PM
Jan 2014

however, you have to understand that many people (myself included) joined the Army under the misguided intent that they would make the world a better place.

I was 17 in 1997 and was the total product of my upbringing when I truly internalized that the military was a tool used to make the world a better place. I thoroughly believed the motto of the Green Berets "De Opresso Liber" (or liberator of the oppressed). I saw examples of conflicts in my life up to that point (albeit wrongly in some cases) as being perfect examples of how the military was used to protect those who couldn't be protected by any other means.

I joined with the best of intentions and the purest of thoughts but sadly I found that I was to be taken advantage of. My military service brings out a strange mix of often conflicting thoughts and feelings. It is a huge part of my identity (i.e. my avatar), but at the same time I'm appalled by much of it.

Like you, I hate to see the glorification of Soldiers but at the same time I hate for my service to be ignored and forgotten. The sense of alienation that many of us returning vets feel is overwhelming and astounding at times. Even when I'm with my wife, parents, and kids I feel completely out of place, sad, and alone. I personally think that monuments for wars should focus on images of broken Soldiers and shattered families - not images of strength that stir feeling of glory.

I'm not saying that this is who you are, but anti-war types of people need to do more to incorporate and include veterans like myself at times into their cause. Blanketing veterans as part of the system to be fought against eliminates people who can be very effective at getting points across to those who push for wars.

Again, I believe that I agree with much of what you have said.

el_bryanto

(11,804 posts)
8. So you want to protect this soldier from being used as political prop?
Wed Jan 29, 2014, 01:36 PM
Jan 2014

I wonder what he would say? Would he thank you? Or would he suggest that he doesn't need you to protect him?

And what do you mean by jabber - is that just away of dismissing arguments you don't agree with as irrelevant?

Bryant

MineralMan

(146,364 posts)
10. Thank you for your comment.
Wed Jan 29, 2014, 01:37 PM
Jan 2014

As you already know, I disagree with it. But thanks for taking the time to share it with me.

frazzled

(18,402 posts)
24. Sorry you can't face the antiwar message in all this
Wed Jan 29, 2014, 01:51 PM
Jan 2014

The sergeant wasn't a mere political prop. Obama has met with him on numerous occasions and has been close to the family. Most important, he is a symbol of why we not only need to push diplomacy and use war only as a last resort, but why, as the president said, the US must get off a permanent war footing.

But it apparently hurt your sensibilities to have to look at the wreckage of war. That was reason number one why the president put him there: as a remembrance of what wars get you, and as a warning for those itching for war with Iran. Reason number two was to say there is hope: this young man has fought his way back from what seemed like impossible odds, and the country can too.

 

quinnox

(20,600 posts)
11. There should have been a moment of silence instead of all the applause
Wed Jan 29, 2014, 01:38 PM
Jan 2014

if that was the true intent, to honor soldiers who have been injured in a war.



Fumesucker

(45,851 posts)
16. So many of these issues are like Rorschach tests, you see what you are primed to see
Wed Jan 29, 2014, 01:41 PM
Jan 2014

The human brain is a very sophisticated pattern recognition system among other things, we are so sensitive to patterns that we perceive patterns which aren't even there, like Jesus in a chalupa and so on.

It really doesn't help the perceptions in this particular matter that using veterans as propaganda tools has such a long and sordid history.



MineralMan

(146,364 posts)
19. Oddly enough, when I see a military veteran with
Wed Jan 29, 2014, 01:45 PM
Jan 2014

a visible injury, as in this case, I see it as propaganda against war. That kind of propaganda is just fine with me. We should see the results of war.

Fumesucker

(45,851 posts)
26. Your support the troops sticker won't get you into heaven any more
Wed Jan 29, 2014, 01:54 PM
Jan 2014
http://www.democraticunderground.com/?com=view_post&forum=1002&pid=3771282

And no, that's not an attack on you, just an ironic statement.

As a vet myself I always wonder if the wounded vets are brought out in order to push a sunk costs fallacy on us.

MineralMan

(146,364 posts)
27. I'm also a veteran.
Wed Jan 29, 2014, 01:58 PM
Jan 2014

I served in the USAF between 1965 and 1969. As it turned out, I wasn't ever sent to a conflict area, but I had no idea of that when I enlisted. Why I enlisted is a complex thing, but it was, in part, because my father had served, and I felt a sense of responsibility to do the same.

Since I'm an atheist, the concept of heaven is meaningless to me. I get this one shot at living, so I try to do it honorably. Try.

demigoddess

(6,646 posts)
30. I've been seeing vets since the 50s
Wed Jan 29, 2014, 02:01 PM
Jan 2014

military brat here, both my dads fought, and while they survived the wars, they both died young because of their service. And I have seen so many men who were never the same after their service. Today we have tons of young men who will spend the rest of their lives being cared for by their families. What a waste. War should only be for defending our shores, not for changing other countries.

Jefferson23

(30,099 posts)
64. I see it exactly that way too. To me, this poor guy, who was so severly impacted is
Wed Jan 29, 2014, 04:33 PM
Jan 2014

a reminder of what a complete waste both wars proved to be.

bemildred

(90,061 posts)
37. "Many true things are said through false teeth."
Wed Jan 29, 2014, 02:17 PM
Jan 2014

The fact that one can discern self-serving motives in it does not mean that that man, and the many he stood in for, did not deserve our recognition for their service.

And I too saw it as an anti-war thing to do. It was an anti-war thing to do back in the 70s, to honor and recognize the returning vets, while showing the cost of their sacrifices, and it is now. Vets played a big role in the anti-war movement back then, like Kerry did, and they do now.

MineralMan

(146,364 posts)
48. Toward the end of my USAF enlistment, in 1968 and 1969,
Wed Jan 29, 2014, 02:59 PM
Jan 2014

I was an active participant in the anti-war movement in the Washington, DC area. I was stationed nearby, and had had it with the Vietnam war. I stood in protests in my Class A Uniform, with a sign in my hands. I was arrested once, in front of the Pentagon, in uniform, but was somehow released and never charged with anything. I never quite understood what happened that got me sent out a side door and not held.

Shortly after that, my enlistment was over, and I returned to a more normal life again.

bemildred

(90,061 posts)
57. Good for you. I turned in my draft card. Again, nothing happened.
Wed Jan 29, 2014, 03:31 PM
Jan 2014

I even got a Secret clearance later when I worked in defense. (Not MY idea, the last thing I wanted was to have to deal with all that bullshit.)

The returning vets and their uncooperative attitude was one of the reasons they ended the draft.

Edit: my brother was USAF in Saigon, he could tell some stories ... He's really funny when he talks about how the press releases were put together.

frazzled

(18,402 posts)
18. Some points about the introduction of Sergeant Remsburg
Wed Jan 29, 2014, 01:45 PM
Jan 2014

1. Given the context provided at the apex of the president's SOTU speech, the introduction of the sergeant was meant, imo, to be an illustration of why America must (and will, under this administration) "get off of a permanent war footing." Obama said he would not be sending men into war unless absolutely necessary, and reiterated a defense of his diplomacy efforts. If you want one good reason to accept that the US needs to end the war in Afghanistan and avoid a war with Iran ... then Sgt. Remsburg is your living proof.

2. The second reason to introduce the Sgt. was as a parable for a nation distraught about how it will ever regain its footing after the Great Recession, and amidst all the problems in Washington and in the world. It was about not quitting, and it was about hope. If this gravely damaged young man could fight his way back from a traumatic brain injury, this country could finish fighting its way back, too. This is not just my interpretation. It was explicit in the speech.

3. This wasn't just some guy paraded out for a bit of nationalistic jingoism. The president has known this soldier since the beginning of his first term. He has met with him three times and has kept in close contact. This was personal. http://www.nytimes.com/2013/08/23/us/politics/obama-and-a-soldier-3-meetings-and-a-lesson-in-resilience.html

4. Obama didn't send this soldier into his 10 deployments: that happened before he became president. The sergeant was injured months into Obama's first year in office. But Obama is bringing other soldiers like him back home. He already did it in Iraq, and will complete bringing them back from Afghanistan by the end of this year. No more: that was the message.

5. I'm sorry this offended the dainty sensibilities of those like W. Pitt here. But the entire problem with these wars has been that nobody wants to look at the results, and nobody has had to. Obama said, "Here, look: this is what a war I want to finally end has done." And it was also to say: "Here, look: no matter how horrible, we can all get past these things, just like Sgt. Remsburg has been doing." Anything good is never easy, as he said.

MineralMan

(146,364 posts)
23. Your points are very well made.
Wed Jan 29, 2014, 01:47 PM
Jan 2014

Sgt. Remsburg was not presented as a means of glorifying war in any way. He was presented as an example of the cost of war. As you say, the content of the speech made that perfectly clear.

HappyMe

(20,277 posts)
31. Very well said.
Wed Jan 29, 2014, 02:06 PM
Jan 2014


I remember some of the reporting from Viet Nam. They showed the coffins being carried out of the cargo planes and lined up on the tarmac. Lots and lots of coffins. They showed pictures and footage of people screaming 'baby killer' and throwing stuff at the recent veterans of that war. Sometimes there were horrifying pictures in the Sunday paper. I have heard some stories first hand, and I know a guy who will never speak of it. War wasn't sanitized and watered down like it is now.

I'm pretty damn disgusted by the 'prop' crap. It pretty much is a complete disregard for that sargeant's experiences and suffering.

riqster

(13,986 posts)
35. Most people who are upset seem to impute malevolent motives to the President.
Wed Jan 29, 2014, 02:12 PM
Jan 2014

You, on the other hand make a good case for a positive motivation.

Those like WR Pitt assume the worst, and thus are offended.

In reality, none of us can truly know why another person acts in a certain manner: but we should start by examining their history and taking context into account, as you did.

Skittles

(153,444 posts)
71. dainty sensibilities
Thu Jan 30, 2014, 04:42 AM
Jan 2014

2 Jan 2014:
IMMEDIATE RELEASE No. NR-042-14
January 22, 2014
________________________________________
DOD Identifies Army Casualty

The Department of Defense announced today the death of a soldier who was supporting Operation Enduring Freedom.

Chief Warrant Officer Edward Balli, 42, of Monterey, Calif., died Jan. 20, in Kandahar Province, Afghanistan, of wounds from small arms fire when he was attacked by insurgents.

Balli was assigned to Headquarters and Headquarters Troop, 2nd Cavalry Regiment, U.S. Army Europe, Vilseck, Germany.


please do tell us why the CONTINUED, SENSELESS slaughter in Afhganistan (of both troops AND civilians) should not offend our "dainty sensibilities"

frazzled

(18,402 posts)
76. They should offend: that was my point
Thu Jan 30, 2014, 10:58 AM
Jan 2014

You have to SEE them to offend. Barf back at you. I'm sort of tired of the willful misreadings that people post here, to bolster their preconceived notions. It's boring.

Skittles

(153,444 posts)
77. sorry, NO
Thu Jan 30, 2014, 06:30 PM
Jan 2014

that is NOT what it should take (and CERTAINLY NOT MORE OF IT) - if more DUers actually took the time to send care packages, TALK TO THESE TROOPS, *READ THE PRESS RELEASES*, instead of looking at that senseless war as some kind of abstract event in which the CIC plays an innocent bystander, Will Pitt's post of "dainty sensibility" would have 10,000 recs instead of 500+. BORING?

get the red out

(13,468 posts)
22. Well said
Wed Jan 29, 2014, 01:47 PM
Jan 2014

I am horrified at the sacrifices our military people have been forced to make in these needless wars in the middle east, but want to certainly honor them.

Skittles

(153,444 posts)
72. we?
Thu Jan 30, 2014, 04:45 AM
Jan 2014

I never approved of any of this shit, or supported anyone who did - heck, I wasn't even one of the people stupid enough to rally around that warmongering bastard bush after 9/11

Agnosticsherbet

(11,619 posts)
25. All Americans should see the cost of war in the flesh the young we send there.
Wed Jan 29, 2014, 01:52 PM
Jan 2014

I spend time regularly at the Naval hospital where such displays are the norm. Everyone should visit, se see men and women whose lives have been wrecked on the alter of foreign policy. If I could, I would require every man woman and child in a city be required to attend the funerals of those that come back in a box. They should be honored. But more than honored, we should see what we have done, so that war can become a thing of necessity rather than expedience.

 

TheMathieu

(456 posts)
29. It was heartwarming.
Wed Jan 29, 2014, 02:01 PM
Jan 2014

It says more about those that had a problem with it than anything.

I feel sorry for those that are so blinded by ideology and hate that they can't muster up a kind word or have the decency to remain silent in moments that should be without controversy.

riqster

(13,986 posts)
32. This:
Wed Jan 29, 2014, 02:06 PM
Jan 2014

"It's fine to believe that we should not engage in military activities. It's fine to blame those who plan those activities and send our military personnel into harm's way. It is not fine to blame those who serve honorably. The President was right to honor this enlisted man, who paid a great price to serve. Those who stood and applauded the Sgt. are right to have done so."

Well said!

MineralMan

(146,364 posts)
34. Thank you.
Wed Jan 29, 2014, 02:09 PM
Jan 2014

I admit to not understanding the objections raised to this part of the SOTU address. I saw that injured Sergeant as an example of why negotiation is preferable to warfare. I believe that was the President's point, as well, along with honoring the service of all, through one example.

 

FairWinds

(1,717 posts)
39. As a Vietnam Vet . .
Wed Jan 29, 2014, 02:30 PM
Jan 2014

I have a problem with treating all veterans as "heroes".
I certainly was not a hero . .
http://otherwords.org/redefining-heroism/
Why don't we honor water treatment plant workers
instead? They do much more to extend healthy lives
than all the warriors.
How about teachers? Trash collectors?
No, the real heroes are those who resist war.
People and societies CAN change, by the way.
Sweden was once just about the most warlike
country on earth, but has now not fought a
significant conflict since 1812.
Bottom line - either we abolish war or it will
abolish us.
Join Veterans for Peace . .

MineralMan

(146,364 posts)
40. This soldier was not held up as a hero.
Wed Jan 29, 2014, 02:39 PM
Jan 2014

He was shown and seen as a wounded warrior, and an example of why diplomacy is preferable to warfare.

I'm 100% in favor of abolishing warfare. I'm not confident that we have the ability to do so, however.

DustyJoe

(849 posts)
51. heros
Wed Jan 29, 2014, 03:15 PM
Jan 2014
I have a problem with treating all veterans as "heroes".
.
I think most people would agree with that statement.

This young mans 10 tours, extent of injuries and fantastic recovery against the best explosives can attest, I see him as a hero.

My 1 tour in Vietnam cut short at 7 months of combat due to a 'million dollar wound' pales in comparison to this man. I have no problem seeing his dedication to duty and performance and recovery as heroic.

For the 'political prop' detractors, I certainly do NOT see a hidden agenda by the CIC after meeting this soldier for the third time, in his singling this soldier out for a presidential focus and congratulations and thanks for his selfless service. Should give the rabid detractors that keep harping that the CIC is patently anti military pause to see the opposite. Yes war is hell, we've watched the human result for the last 200+ years and will see it hundreds of years hence. That doesn't change the human spirit or perception of self of those who serve.

<Salute> to this fine Soldier.
 

giftedgirl77

(4,713 posts)
47. I agree with you completely... (I posted this on another thread as well)
Wed Jan 29, 2014, 02:55 PM
Jan 2014

I find it hilarious that sooooo many people on this board want to jump up & down & scream about how that poor NCO was solely used as a political pawn without once taking into consideration how he may of felt about it & what his position was. There are thousands upon thousands of us out here who joined the military young because it was the best options for us for college or the only way to ensure regular paychecks that will include free health insurance & lifeinsurace for not only us but our families.

Yes many of us have dealt with multiple deployments, some of us were dual military & went with our spouses to limit the amount of time our kids would have to be disconnected from their parents. We have watched our friends die, watched their spouses pick up the pieces, & have come back all kinds of fucked up.

When we watched the STOU last night & they introduced the NCO the first thing that hit me was I wonder how he felt about all of those assholes that clamour for war on a daily basis & knowing that so many of them profited of our loss, pain, & misery solely because that's the game those fuckers play. As a 36 yr old female who was just medically retired from the military without the hopes of ever working again & only being able to hope that I won't be completely blind & wheelchair bound by the time my 12 yr old graduates high school, I can understand completely why he would want to be there. I want people to know what the results of this failed experiment is & I don't want those assholes to ever forget about any of the Soldiers that have dealt with this shit in any way, shape, or form.

Maybe the people who are jumping up & down screaming about the poor NCO, they should try & get the perspective of people who live these nightmares everyday.

MineralMan

(146,364 posts)
65. I'm not sure. I've recommended enlisting to
Wed Jan 29, 2014, 05:42 PM
Jan 2014

a couple of young guys who somehow missed learning any sort of responsibility at home. One of them did just that and looked me up later to thank me.

I enlisted in 1965 basically because I wasn't sure where I was heading. Four years later, at 23 years of age, I had a much better idea.

But, you could be right. I just don't know.

 

L0oniX

(31,493 posts)
68. The only direction I have point anyone is to the Navy ship generation systems...
Wed Jan 29, 2014, 06:18 PM
Jan 2014

Last edited Thu Jan 30, 2014, 11:54 AM - Edit history (1)

only because you will get hired by just about any new power plant company and start out with a healthy pay check. Other than that I would steer them away from any military service.

gwheezie

(3,580 posts)
59. I have a few observations
Wed Jan 29, 2014, 03:38 PM
Jan 2014

Recently a family member and I went to the Smithsonian in DC. He did 4 tours in Iraq/Afghanistan. We stopped by the Vietnam exhibition and he watched the old news casts by Cronkite and asked "why didn't anyone do this for my wars" So that led to a discussion about a free press and embeds. I watched the sotu and my thoughts within the context of the speech was this is the cost of war,not a glorification of the wars.
I had a discussion with another family member who also did multiple tours, he felt the country was lied to. He made the comment that he thought some of the ptsd issues some have returning is that they know the truth about what happened when the country was lied to and find it difficult now to reconcile the truth with our indifference as a country to what we did over there.
My thoughts are I can't believe that politicians that were alive during the Vietnam era thought they could get away with this sort of lie again. So, if anyone, the potus included can shed some reality into our everyday awareness then I welcome it.

 

gLibDem

(130 posts)
61. I respectfully disagree.
Wed Jan 29, 2014, 04:19 PM
Jan 2014

Just as we now fight wars of choice, we fight them with soldiers of choice. I consider the "soldiers" mercenaries. I don't need to honor them.

Number23

(24,544 posts)
66. I don't know why anyone bothers anymore
Wed Jan 29, 2014, 06:02 PM
Jan 2014

That something like this becomes so all consuming and fodder for yet another OBAMA BAD orgy is nothing short of astonishing.

No wonder this place is overrun with whatever these people are and so many of the Dem base (particularly people of color) have left. This place is GONE.

 

Rex

(65,616 posts)
67. Yeah and how many times does that happen? How about that they walk outside
Wed Jan 29, 2014, 06:05 PM
Jan 2014

down the street and find a homeless vet to honor and cherish? Yeah right...ZERO times.

The use of military professionals as stock footage for political reasons is disgusting and perverse.

EOM.

Skittles

(153,444 posts)
69. yes, I do it MONTHLY
Thu Jan 30, 2014, 04:37 AM
Jan 2014

I have been sending care packages and cards to troops in Iraq and then Afghanistan for ALMOST A DECADE - when does it fucking end?? Why are they not addressing the INSANITY of it all?

Shankapotomus

(4,840 posts)
73. If there was a draft, I would tend to agree
Thu Jan 30, 2014, 07:09 AM
Jan 2014

But these days, if I am correct, if you really consider a war morally repugnant, there are ways (some honorable, some not so honorable) to get out of military service.

So I think honoring should be done on a case by case basis.

What I think you can do and still be against war is care for ex-service personal. I'm sure many veterans come away from their experience with war changed and disillusioned, like they made a mistake. That can be a great opportunity to let them vent, show that you understand them (as long as they are not war criminals) and then bring them more fully into the anti war camp.

redgreenandblue

(2,088 posts)
80. Fair enough. Try honoring Vietcong soldiers, as Jane Fonda did, and see what happens.
Sat Feb 1, 2014, 05:47 AM
Feb 2014

When people speak of honoring soldiers, and get all sentimental about it, the unspoken assumption usually is that
these soldiers are Americans.

Try honoring Iraqi soliders here on DU, for their bravery in the face of an overwhelming force, and see what happens.



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