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The human side of war

tiltjlp

PN co-founder
War is never pleasent, and never a good thing, but someone sent me some pictures that show a more human and softer side to war. And although these are of American soldiers, I have no doubt that similar scenes occur in all armies, no matter the nationality. I feel that the soldiers are victims of war as much as anyone, since war is declared by governments but fought by men and women who have no choice in the matter.

John
 

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tiltjlp

PN co-founder
I never served in the military, in fact I was an active protester of the Viet Nam Conflict, which was an undeclared war. But I have always had respect for the members of the military, and their many sacrifices. All soldiers are heros, governments are the villians.

John
 

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Fiend_THeyde

Pinball Nudger
Hey John,
I´m really respecting you...and I´m reading your column regularly. Your thoughts often offers a different/new point of view concerning many themes, which are always worth to be thought about...

But you´re definetely wrong, if you think, these soldiers are _heros_! It´s not very brave firing cruise missiles from the distance at people who cannot fight back. It´s not very brave flying around in B-52 Bombers, throwing Clusterbombs, "Daisy-cutters" and Missiles on people who cannot fight back, because the aircraft ist out of range of anti-aircraft weapons! It´s nevertheless dangerous (because you can meet a technical defect), but it´s _not_ heroic!!!
Further it´s _not_ heroic starting an attack based on lies and false claims (remember C.Powell in the UN).

In addition to that: the soldiers in Iraq are _volunteers_!!! They are no...I don´t know the right term...compulsory military service...liable to military service (?) like many soldiers in Nam. Ok, the recruiting officers mostly chosing from the Poor (telling them lies about: good education, good job, you will never go really to war etc.), so it´s less volunteering than mercenaries, because they often have just the choice between army and staying poor. But it´s a shame, that a lot of the Poor were forced to join the army, not_heroic_!!!

Destroying Falludja was like destroying Stalingrad: cruel, bloody and in no way _heroic_ (as a lot of reports said: the US used WMD´s like poison gas and napalm during the destruction of Falludja. WMD`s were the so called "reason" for engaging Iraq!) You might call this brutal, tragic or sad, but _heroic_??

You know me, John! I´m usually not telling stupid anti-american claims, based on hipocrisy or anything else of this kind, nor do I now...please look at the pics, StevOz has linked and think about the term _heroic_!

I´ve seen a lot of pics of that kind and a movie called "Iraqi lullaby"...worse, worse, worse...at least, if you think of the bushist´s so called "reasons" for engaging Iraq.

Greets :)
 

tiltjlp

PN co-founder
Fiend_THeyde, when you're right you're right. My choice of the word hero was wrong. Actually I'm as anti-war as anyone can be. I was an anti-war activist during the undeclared Viet Nam Conflict War. I posted those pictues because they are so unlike what we all think of soldiers.

And I have to agree, that without the draft, they are going into it with their eyes open, or they had better be. And I also agree with you that many of them enlist as a way out of being poor, so in a way they are also victims of the system.

I'm totally against the US politician's attitude that we, meanoing the US, has a right and duty to spread our beliefs thoughout the world. I'm sure the US politicians are tne only ones telling lies and making false claims, but that doesn't make it any better.

Although it will never happen, it would be interesting to see what would happen to the world economy, and world attitude, it there were no wars at all for one year. There's no way we all wouldn't be better off at the end of that year. At least we'd have some opeace of mind.

And thanks for you nice comments about my opinion pieces. While they're mostly about pinball, I hope they give everyone something to think about. I'm not out to persuade folks to my viewepoint, but simply to realize there is more than one side to any issue.

John
 

JonPurpleHaze

Site Nudger
Staff member
I appreciate the effort but this Threads title is Soooooooo Wrong, The human side of war's 1st picture is a GI scratching a damned cat, That Sucks....

Folks are getting killed, where is the image of that same soldier possibly screwing the same cat after the photo-op, this thread disgusts me and to be balanced should include dingbats killing children...

I love Ya John but are the cia at your door, the images remind me of brainwashing, war is about killing people not cat scratching.

Jon

2.jpg
 

tiltjlp

PN co-founder
Point well taken Jon. What amazes me is that I never considered all the flack I'd catch over this. I should have posted them without comment, since my views are closer to everyone elses than to what I did post. I simply thought that they contrasted what you usually think of war, and that they might make for an interesting discussion. At least I was right about that part.

John
 

JonPurpleHaze

Site Nudger
Staff member
You don't deserve flack and I believe I know how you feel about this war..
I feel that the soldiers are victims of war as much as anyone, since war is declared by governments but fought by men and women who have no choice in the matter.


The images you posted look like the marines planted them..
 

tiltjlp

PN co-founder
You could be right, but move likely they are planned by someone closer to the political side of things. If I were younger and healthier I would be out there portesting this war even more strongly than I did the Viet Nam garbage. A good friend was badly wounded over in Nam when a fellow soldier couldn't handle the stress and set off a hand gernade inside a recreation tent. Just because our way may be right for us, at least to some extent doesn't give us the duty to impose our will on the rest of the world. The world could use a lot more doves and a lot less hawks. Which reminds me of the quote "What if they gave a war and nobody came?

John
 

panda55

Pinball Wizard
Fair dinkum it gets my dander up when I read some of this armed forces bashing.

Yes, these people are getting paid to do their job.

Yes, some of the things that SOME of them have done was wrong, bad and frankly ill-disciplined.

Yes, there are a lot of photos of cruel and unusual punishment being metered out on Iraqi nationals.

But why take it out on the troops. They are there because OUR governments told them to go there. They didn't just decide one morning to go blow something up - mind you some of the guys seem so keyed up they just might have ;)

Our governments are there because they were voted in by either you and me, our neighbours and friends etc. Mind you, if you didn't vote (in Oz it's compulsory) then you really can't complain what the governments do, ever.
 

panda55

Pinball Wizard
And whilst I'm on the soapbox, and off my medication for another half hour ....

We are now seeing images of war that during the First and Second World Wars would have been either not taken (no CNN then), were intercepted and blacked out with a government ban (yes in those days the government ran the country, not civil libertarian groups) or the people weren't interested overly much because they wanted their children to be safe and come home, no matter what.

It's very easy to sit back and criticize the troops behaviour in extremely hazardous circumstances but that's life nowadays.

example: Hi profile football team goes to country town and run amok with drunken loutish behaviour, brawling, accosting young women and also accused of gang rape. Now these guys behave like that when the world is their oyster, money worries don't exist, have the best of everything, are taught repeatedly how to behave in public BUT STILL CANT GET IT RIGHT.

And ... no-one is shooting at them.

And ... no-one is cutting the heads off their friends.

And ... no-one is blowing up their children and wives only source of food and medical being distributed by volunteers.

The soldiers that were doing the wrong thing should be punished, thats a no brainer.

But you've got to support your troops. One day, you may just need them.
 

tiltjlp

PN co-founder
Thanks Panda, you said what I tried to, a lot better than I did. I voted, for the first time in years, but the guy I supported lost, and while I'm still not thrilled, complaining doesn't change things. The only thing that will improve things here in the states is when more people realize that this election went against the belief that the seperation of church and state is a good concept, and that proper governing isn't the same as going to a prayer meeting.

John
 

StevOz

Administrator
Staff member
Site Supporters
Don't have to and will never support troops, I have my swag and survival skills and keep in practise.
 

tiltjlp

PN co-founder
War never has of will be holy, and the crusades were an excuse to pillage and rape in the misguided name of organized religion. I do wonder if there comes a point when the world gets so messed up you don't care if you survive or not?

John
 

tiltjlp

PN co-founder
A major goof happened.

Somehow while trying to copy and paste text from a message by Fiend_THeyde, somehow I deleted his original post. It doesn't make sense to me, since I was trying to post a reply, but somehow his message and my reply were both deleted. Below is the part of his post I had copied, and my reply. Sorry again Fiend_THeyde and everyone.

Posted by Fiend_THeyde

Some very good friends of mine (G.I.s in Germany) were forced to go to Saudi-Arabia during "desert shield". They didn´t want to go to "do their job" (as "Fox News" and other medias claims it so often in their coverage about the second and third Iraqian War). They want to stay or go home, but not go to the desert for killing peeps, who haven´t done something to them.

Question: How many vets are suffered from "Gulfwar-syndrome" and how did the pentagon deals with them? Tells a lot about the way, the administration used soldiers for their purposes and got rid of them, after they have done, what they are thought to do. Similar happened (here in germany) to a lot of german soldiers, who got cancer because of the radar-rays (during the so called "cold"-war) of their equipment (as they observed the "warsaw-pact"-countries).

EDIT: The best support for (your) troops is to be very active in anti-war movements!

What you posted above, and I copied here, is what I mean when I say I support the troops. Their governments using them almost as "throw away" pieces of equipment, and then lieing to them and breaking their promises for medical treatment. It may be a poor choice of words on my part, but I don't consider the average soldier the villian, but rather every single government.

There can be no true Peace as long as we glorify war. I agree with you Fiend_THeyde, we simply say it differently. I'm proud of my years of service as an anti-war activist.

John

 

Fiend_THeyde

Pinball Nudger
Hey John ;),
don´t worry about deleting my post. I think, I can reconstruct it somehow tomorrow and post it again. I know, that you be no war enthusiastic and that you feel compassion with those, who are victims of the war-machine.

Greets, pal :)
 

tiltjlp

PN co-founder
Thanks for understanding Fiend_THeyde. What peeved me the most was that I agree completely with what you said, and how you saod it. If nothing else this thread has gotten me to start wearing my old slogan botton I worn while protesting certain other wars. In the middle is a Peace Symbol, and around that are the words Back By Popular Demand. Maybe by wearing it again I'll maKe someone think about the stark realities of war.

John
 

Greywolf

Perfectionist Bastard
tiltjlp said:
War never has of will be holy, and the crusades were an excuse to pillage and rape in the misguided name of organized religion. I do wonder if there comes a point when the world gets so messed up you don't care if you survive or not?

John

Oh, you mean the point the world is at, say, about now?

I have no worries. Momma Nature will eventually set it right, even if I'm not around for it :).

Peace Wishes from a spiritual-not-religious independent Pagan,
 

tiltjlp

PN co-founder
Greywolf said:
tiltjlp said:
War never has of will be holy, and the crusades were an excuse to pillage and rape in the misguided name of organized religion. I do wonder if there comes a point when the world gets so messed up you don't care if you survive or not?

John

Oh, you mean the point the world is at, say, about now?

I have no worries. Momma Nature will eventually set it right, even if I'm not around for it :).

Peace Wishes from a spiritual-not-religious independent Pagan,

Yes Wolf, but I have an idea that no matter how bad things get, the politics of war, and the stupid theory that "might makes right" won't matter. Some people will still be too "macho" to get the message. To paraphrase Pogo, I have seen the enemy and it is the need to be "right as any cost". How wrong is that concept?

John
 
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