Life amid the violence, death, horror, trauma, anxiety, and fatigue of war erodes our moral being
And as Major General Smedly Butler laid out to air so many decades ago… war is a racket (and we’re not talking tennis) the truth remains the truth.
I would submit that soldiers bear most as burden the direct experience of how they represent “externalized costs” as “cannon fodder”. Precisely what are those problems with the VA? …ahhhh… more externalized costs for the beneficiaries of the MIC.
Look at Flynn - and take the lesson to heart. HE IS NOT PERMITTED to “externalize” all of his costs for having the hubris of having a demiurgic delusion of impunity. He is instead manipulated into entering into making a ‘devils bargain’ . And hey… peek in the rear-view mirror to see how his peers have deepened their pockets and danced through the revolving doors.
The mirrors in this fun house need some of the sacks of hammers from the WH and capitol hill to be swung long and hard in order to meet the mirrors as they should.
He says “Nor were they anti-military or unpatriotic.” and granted, the author qualifies this qualification, but why is it necessary, or more specifically politically correct, that any person writing about the horrors of war qualify their thesis thus?
And yes, I understand some might blur the line between being anti-military and anti-veteran, but what the hell is wrong with saying “fuck war!” The government and movie-producers keep pummeling us with the message that war is glorious and even compassionate. What’s wrong with pointing out that war is a few wealthy people destroying the lives of a whole bunch of poor people and taking their stuff? and that no, the world does not need militaries?
Because the world of men have always needed warriors, hunters, and the military.
I came across the concept of ‘moral injury’ a year or two ago, and there is a lot to it. The author of this article is rightly ambivalent, because there have always been enemies, and possibly there always will be.
I refer yourself nephewsam to two resources which illustrate the complexity of the issue discussed here.
Bear in mind in the present we are discussing an empire, the United States, and an all voluntary military machine rife with an additional mercenary element welded on, being run for profit, in Smedley Butler’s time as well as now, by a corporate-capture pretend democracy.
Naturally dysfunction can be expected in such a system.
It is not the case that ‘men’ are not natural killers - it may be the case that ‘most men’ are not natural killers.
The movie that follows is a part of revisionist history, and it appears to be partially based on the actual historical and archaeological investigations which are in the link to the book, first published two years before the movie.
Both provide together tremendous perspective and pause for thought, especially since the book suggests that the very basis for modern civilization followed, not from Rome or Greece - but from the genius of the tribal shaman Temujin, better known as Genghis Khan.
Seems as though the Violence, Death, Horror, Trauma, Anxiety, and Fatigue of War, is good training for our modern police state that we now find ourselves in.
When Slobodan Praljak drank poison and committed suicide a few days ago - that was moral injury and post traumatic stress disorder to the max.
I know a Croatian who was there at the time, and to her Slobodan Praljak was not a war criminal.
Michael Ignatieff, former Liberal Prime Minister of Canada, devotes an entire chapter of his book “Empire Light” to the destruction and rebuilding of the Mostar Ottoman era bridge, and adds detail to this tale.
In my opinion, the suicide is the hallmark of dysfunction, not because of war, which has literally never ceased in the long history of mankind, but because suicide is unnatural. And this is the result of confusion, for example a Christian doing the killing of another morally strong religious civilization. It just doesn’t compute, to either side, and it shouldn’t, if you think about it - i.e., one fantasy fighting another.
Different if you are simply attacked and need to respond to save life and limb and kin, but that’s not what any of this regime change business masquerading as right and wrong is about.
It;s about money, power and prestige, maybe religious righteousness - and if you kill for these reasons, you will hurt yourself as well as the enemy.