The “ultimate sacrifice,” as I understand it, is indeed to be willing to be made into a killer. It is certainly not to march with heavy machinery to flatter a fool.
There may be some heroic acts performed in war, but they mostly refer to rescuing your own, not fixing the world. Just about the time 43 was ramping up his “shock and awe” campaign against Iraq, UNICEF issued a report that pitifully few Iraqi children were vaccinated. I proposed that, instead of bombs, we sent in a UNICEF battalion to bring the vaccinations up to date. That might have been heroic.
Indeed, criticize the leaders. Pity the dupes. And shout the truth to stop the duping.