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Old 10-10-2010, 08:07 PM   #1
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Support the troops?

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We often hear, from antiwar activists as well as pious politicians and every sort of commentator, that we should all "support the troops." No matter what one thinks of the particular war being fought, this kind of boilerplate is invariably appended: "But of course," we are told, "everyone supports the troops." We honor them for their service. We pat them on the back and say: "Good job!"
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These twelve apostles of mayhem — assigned to the 2nd Stryker Brigade, and stationed at Forward Operating Base Ramrod, along the border with Pakistan — randomly chose unarmed Afghan civilians to murder. Then they shot them, or blew them up with grenades, mutilating the victims. Gibbs, the alleged ringleader, made necklaces out of the body parts. They covered up their killing spree by placing weapons near the corpses, and the incidents went down in the records as gun battles with "insurgents."


Gibbs reportedly has a tattoo on his left calf which is a pictorial record of his crime spree: it consists of two crossed pistols encircled by six skulls. According to news reports, the red skulls indicate murders carried out in Iraq, and the blue skulls represent Afghan kills.


Knowledge of the killings was widely shared in the camp, and it’s hard to imagine higher-ups were unaware of what was going on. But there was indeed one apparently unwilling participant, Adam Winfield, who desperately tried to reach out to his parents, to whom he confessed the murders.


The "honor the troops" brigade will tell us this is just another case of a few bad apples: this latest incident is no reason to condemn the entire US military – is it?


Well, quite frankly, it is, because, as Winfield pointed out to his parents in a February 14 Facebook posting: "Pretty much the whole platoon knows about it. It’s okay with all of them pretty much. Except me…. I want to do something about it [but] the only problem is I don’t feel safe here telling anyone." "I talked to someone," Winfield continued, "and they told me this stuff happens all the time and that when we get back there is always someone that spills the beans so it normally works its way out."
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The US military is a criminal enterprise, just as the ruling elite in this country is the equivalent of a crime syndicate: and they are getting away with murder. One day, the people’s justice will be visited on them. Let’s hope that rough justice doesn’t unfairly impact us all.


Support the Troops? by Justin Raimondo -- Antiwar.com
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Old 10-10-2010, 08:48 PM   #2
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I dunno. I really believe there are soldiers who join the military with sincere intentions to do good; and then there are those who take advantage of their position and kill innocents. Quite a disturbing story.
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Old 10-10-2010, 10:16 PM   #3
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I have to agree with that statement. Some would argue the "I was just following orders" theory, though, as we found out with the WW2 trials, that isn't exactly a decent excuse (and I would be inclined to agree that that's not a good enough argument, as I think you can only follow orders so long before you find yourself being asked to do something that cannot be justified, and anyone with any shred of humanity and decency would refuse to carry out such horrible requests). Then of course there's the argument that war messes people's minds up so much that they aren't able to properly separate when to attack/kill and when not to attack/kill, which I have no problem believing to be true. It doesn't excuse their behavior at all, but it explains it a lot better.

Personally, I support our troops' efforts when they are defending us from legitimate threats. If one person, or a group of people, are actually plotting or carrying out attacks against our troops or the nation at large at one point and time, I fully understand self-defense and will not argue that (so long as, of course, we're going after the people who actually hurt us). But if they're killing people just to kill, like what happened in this story, with no logical reason behind it, then no, I cannot support that. And besides that, my argument is always that I support wanting our troops to be safe and free from all the burdens war places on them, and the best way for them to have such a thing is to be at home away from the violence and death, but that's not always possible, sadly.

Horrible story. I'd love to think those people will be punished for what they've done, but I'm not sure that'll actually happen, at least not anytime soon. The military still sometimes (if not all the time) has a tendency to look the other way on that stuff.

Angela
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Old 10-11-2010, 10:11 PM   #4
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A lot of times these are just rumors.

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Then of course there's the argument that war messes people's minds up so much that they aren't able to properly separate when to attack/kill and when not to attack/kill, which I have no problem believing to be true. It doesn't excuse their behavior at all, but it explains it a lot better.
Our military is trained in such a way so that they always excersise good judgement to the best of their abilities at the situation at hand. Not everyone deals with the stress of war the same way, but generally it takes a long time for that sort of thing to take effect in the middle of a combat zone.

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The US military is a criminal enterprise, just as the ruling elite in this country is the equivalent of a crime syndicate: and they are getting away with murder. One day, the people’s justice will be visited on them. Let’s hope that rough justice doesn’t unfairly impact us all.
What a load of bullshit. Not gonna even read what those morons have to say.
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Old 10-11-2010, 10:45 PM   #5
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generally it takes a long time for that sort of thing to take effect in the middle of a combat zone
Certainly not in my experience.
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Old 10-12-2010, 12:36 AM   #6
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Geez.....I am sharing too much personal info. But, here goes.

I do support the men and women who serve in our armed forces. But, not always the Commander.

Two family members of mine did a tour of duty in Vietnam. One was reinstated, the other drafted right out of High School. Both came home. In one piece, physically that is. The nightmares and PTSD they suffered was a living hell for them. Both are now with God, at peace. At least, I like to believe and they deserve to be.

My step-dad had to kill one man in self defense. When they were attacked. He came home and never touch a gun again. He died years sooner than he should have. He would wake up screaming in the middle of the night. Reliving it over and over. It ate away his soul. Dad never recieved any kind of after care. It didn't exist for those vets. Ship them home and forget them.

My brother, same thing. He came home and if he heard a car back fire. He would drop to the ground, covering his head. He was spat upon, as a baby killer. So, the wealthy Hippies kids who daddys' could buy them out of the draft, would said. My brother never killed anyone. Since, his job was to authorise jeeps. He died in his mid-fifties. Stomach cancer, so they say? I think "agent orange."
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Old 10-12-2010, 12:59 AM   #7
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I have family members in the military. I choose not to tell them what I think of their choices.
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Old 10-12-2010, 01:48 PM   #8
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by this logic, the fact that some children do terrible, terrible things means that we should tell all kids to go fuck themselves.
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Old 10-12-2010, 05:32 PM   #9
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I have family members in the military. I choose not to tell them what I think of their choices.
what sorts of choices do you mean?
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Old 10-13-2010, 08:11 AM   #10
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"Support the troops" doesn't really jive with me.

I have had friends who have done their military service (both in US and Canadian forces) to kill some time or get some money for college, and the one thread that always resonates with me is that the last thing they want is blind support from the American public. They are very humble about their military service, and above all for them, it is a job. It's not something noble, they are not serving some greater cause, they don't want a stranger to buy them a beer for serving their country.

I guess you could call me "hope the troops don't get killed needlessly", but I don't buy into this bullshit that "once the decision's been made to send the troops in, you've got to be behind them 100%". That black or white thinking is largely what contributed to ruining America during the last administration.

Also, when the Army and other branches of the armed forces continue to target lower-income and minority neighbourhoods when recruiting, you end up with many people with not a lot of hope in life coming out after their service with not a lot of hope in life and the capability to be efficient killers. Killing little brown folks overseas for the White House is largely the business of the poor and minorities in the US, and it does nothing to help with the widening gap between the haves and have-nots.
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Old 10-13-2010, 11:14 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by Canadiens1131 View Post
Also, when the Army and other branches of the armed forces continue to target lower-income and minority neighbourhoods when recruiting, you end up with many people with not a lot of hope in life coming out after their service with not a lot of hope in life and the capability to be efficient killers. Killing little brown folks overseas for the White House is largely the business of the poor and minorities in the US, and it does nothing to help with the widening gap between the haves and have-nots.
exactly. i have a couple friends whose significant others have been shipped off to iraq. they'd both done their tour of duty already but reenlisted for the money. one of them had already been having some ptsd things, his wife would wake up sometimes in the middle of the night to see him in bed holding a gun, freaking out during fourth of july fireworks, things like that.

granted, i certainly would never spit on someone who was a veteran or anything, but i don't blindly support the troops either. like canadiens said, there's plenty of grey for this.
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Old 10-13-2010, 02:08 PM   #12
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what sorts of choices do you mean?
The choice to join the military.
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Old 10-13-2010, 05:16 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by Canadiens1131 View Post
I don't buy into this bullshit that "once the decision's been made to send the troops in, you've got to be behind them 100%". That black or white thinking is largely what contributed to ruining America during the last administration.
Also largely contributed to the victory of the Allies over Germany and Japan in 1945.
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Old 10-13-2010, 06:09 PM   #14
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So I read more from that article.

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"There are no more good men left here."


Of course there aren’t. What kind of person joins the military at this particular point in time – a point when the US is engaged in endless wars of aggression, and stories of atrocities committed by "our" soldiers are coming out all the time? For the most part, precisely the kind of person who would delight in the orgy of bloodlust conducted by the "thrill kill platoon." The military has become an outlet for the sociopaths in our midst.
HE'S GOT ME FIGURED OUT.
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Old 10-13-2010, 07:02 PM   #15
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Also largely contributed to the victory of the Allies over Germany and Japan in 1945.
How does this relate to what he was saying?
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