Soldiers who have been backing out on obligations to the U.S. military, fleeing to Canada because they don’t wish to participate in the war in Iraq, are being treated by our government as fugitives from justice. Many of these so-called “deserters” are migrating as a last resort, after numerous attempts to back out on active duty as conscientious objectors, or claiming that the legality of the war is in question.
Some military officials, Canadian and of the United States, counter these reasons with rhetoric that dances on the border between “just plain fucking retarded” and “terrifyingly fucking retarded”. One Canadian general said something close to the following (forgive me for paraphrasing, but I heard it on NPR and didn’t write it down verbatim): “I don’t get to decide whether or not a war was legal. If you signed up for the military, you have to go with that contract. You don’t get to decide what you should and shouldn’t do.”
Um, what? I’m sorry, I couldn’t hear what you were saying over the GUSH of SHEER DUMB that was SPEWING from your FACE-HOLE, general. So, in essence, “blindly comply with all orders, regardless of how they conflict with your own morality”, then, is what you’re saying?
This idiotic attitude is exactly why I would NEVER join the military.
And hey, this is fun: (Caution: May make you depressed for an indefinite period of time.)
Seymour Hersh – Friday, October 8th at Berkeley: I got a call last week from a soldier — it’s different now, a lot of communication, 800 numbers. He’s an American officer and he was in a unit halfway between Baghdad and the Syrian border. It’s a place where we claim we’ve done great work at cleaning out the insurgency. He was a platoon commander. First lieutenant, ROTC guy.
It was a call about this. He had been bivouacing outside of town with his platoon. It was near, it was an agricultural area, and there was a granary around. And the guys that owned the granary, the Iraqis that owned the granary… It was an area that the insurgency had some control, but it was very quiet, it was not Fallujah. It was a town that was off the mainstream. Not much violence there. And his guys, the guys that owned the granary, had hired, my guess is from his language, I wasn’t explicit — we’re talking not more than three dozen, thirty or so guards. Any kind of work people were dying to do. So Iraqis were guarding the granary. His troops were bivouaced, they were stationed there, they got to know everybody…
They were a couple weeks together, they knew each other. So orders came down from the generals in Baghdad, we want to clear the village, like in Samarra. And as he told the story, another platoon from his company came and executed all the guards, as his people were screaming, stop. And he said they just shot them one by one. He went nuts, and his soldiers went nuts. And he’s hysterical. He’s totally hysterical. And he went to the captain. He was a lieutenant, he went to the company captain. And the company captain said, “No, you don’t understand. That’s a kill. We got thirty-six insurgents.”
You read those stories where the Americans, we take a city, we had a combat, a hundred and fifteen insurgents are killed. You read those stories. It’s shades of Vietnam again, folks, body counts…
You know what I told him? I said, fella, I said: you’ve complained to the captain. He knows you think they committed murder. Your troops know their fellow soldiers committed murder. Shut up. Just shut up. Get through your tour and just shut up. You’re going to get a bullet in the back. You don’t need that. And that’s where we are with this war.
You know, I think Americans are all caught up in this misconception that Middle-Eastern countries are just these nations of terrorists. Middle-Easterners are PEOPLE, goddammit. They aren’t just Iraqis or Afghanis or Iranians or Saudis or et cetera. They are people. They have ideas and opinions and thoughts and feelings. They are parents and children; brothers and sisters; husbands and wives; lovers and friends. We can’t pay for our false sense of security with their lives. These people are not our currency. We can’t say “well, there are some TERRORISTS in there, so we have the right to bomb the fuck out of all of their countries until we kill all of the bad guys”. You know, there are terrorists living in our own fucking country. Anyone remember Tim McVeigh? Anyone Remember The Unabomber? Are we going to start bombing our own country?
Someone on NPR had the audacity to call Bush “the lesser of two evils.” Excuse me, what? He claimed he felt that way because Kerry outed Cheney’s daughter during the last debate. But, see, she was out, and had been for quite a while. In fact, she was a liasion to the gay community for Coors. And this douchebag obviously didn’t watch the VP debates. What a fucking jerk. “I AM A MORON WHO DOESN’T KNOW ANYTHING ABOUT WHAT I’M TALKING ABOUT BUT I’M GOING TO CALL NPR AND SPOUT MY STUPIDITY TO EVERYONE.”
But it got me thinking. The republicans do awful, evil, despicable things all the time and it’s like people have just gotten used to it. It’s almost as though there are two different levels of expectations from democrats and republicans regarding behavior. Democrats are apparently associated with having some higher level of standards, or “taking the high road”, so as soon as one does something typical to the republican variety of behavior, there’s an uproar.
Just look at the difference between Fox News and CBS. On the former, they can lie all they want and very few people really make much of it because it’s almost expected. Dan Rather says something using skewed facts that’s damaging to Bush’s reputation and there’s this nationwide freak-out over it. Come on, people. If the republicans can be completely evil almost constantly, you can at least give us a little “asshole leeway” over on the left, here.
I’m sick of people using “liberal” as a kind of derogatory term, too. (“Librul”, as Georgie tends to put it.) We can’t even be “liberals” and “conservatives” anymore. They took that word away from us. I say we start calling them “neo-conservatives”. I mean, they are, after all. What’s funny is, liberals have always been liberal. Conservatives have become neo-conservatives, though. We’re still liberals, as we have been since it was associated with anything to a reasonable degree left of the center of the political spectrum, but they’re no longer conservatives–they’re neo-cons. Spot the difference! Democrats are still the same party as FDR and Kennedy. Republicans, regardless of what they claim, aren’t the same party as Lincoln. They say that, but it’s not true. Lincoln wasn’t a neo-con.
These people are evil. It’s as apparent as the noses on Mount Rushmore. The Bush administration is one of the greatest threats to American freedom that we have ever known. Saddam Hussien didn’t have any weapons of mass destruction. He had a ton of his own people killed about ten years ago and was a real asshole, but he wasn’t a threat to the people of this country. Bush put our troops in danger by sending them into the country. Whatever danger arose was brought upon us by Bush. We’re rolling back freedoms and rights for the supposed sake of security. The government is gaining more power over the individual and giving up power over business. Bush is taking your money and giving it to the rich, when you could be benefitting from Social Security and other programs. Let’s weigh all of that against one man in another country across an ocean not having any weapons of mass destruction. Which is the greater danger to you?
I find it amusing when people say that George Bush makes them feel “safer”. How, exactly? Do you live in a major metropolitan area? Did you have terrorists living in your bedroom who stood over your bed at night with swords and menacing expressions and then George came in with some U.S. soldiers and shot them? Come on. It’s great when people from Nebraska or, like, rural Arkansas or Ohio say “George Bush makes me feel safer!” I don’t know about you, but I don’t fucking live in Manhattan. Terrorists aren’t as big of a threat to me as the government would like me to believe.
I want to ask everyone in America this question: How do you, personally, feel safer than you did four years ago? I’m not talking about as a nation. I know, 9/11, planes in buildings, et cetera. I mean you, as an individual. How do you feel safer?