Monday, May 09, 2005
Defending The Military
Assumption of Command takes on the strip from last Friday and Dadmanly from the day after.
I have been thinking about this a quite a bit lately as I have taken some minor and essentially insignificant heat from a few Godblogs regarding my support for the war in Iraq, and the military. Minor and insignificant though the crtiticism might be towards me, it parallels the Donnsberry criticism which is neither minor nor insignificant, though Trudeau's reach ain't near what it used to be.
A couple of things need to be said. For one, military service is not for dummies, simpletons, or the close minded. It is a demanding profession, perhaps the most demanding profession. To insinuate otherwise is to be either grossly ignorant or purposefully bigoted.
Secondly, and perhaps most importantly, are comments about when and when not it is appropriate to discuss some things. Dadmanly and Mustang are soldiers, I am not, but if they are anything like any of the soldiers I have met personally their honor and self-respect will prevent them from saying what I am going to say here.
War is a god-awful business, not to be undertaken lightly. It is; however and unfortunately, sometimes necessary. When it is, there is only one way out of it -- Victory. There is no "peace with honor," there is only win or lose. There are no ties in war. At best, a negotiated peace is an opportunity for one side or the other to rebuild and fight again. Can their be a better example of this principle than Saddam Hussein? We kicked his behind out of Kuwait with unimaginable force, but we quit, we did not win. So now we are back. We won this time, but now we owe it to those we defeated to help them put their lives and their nation back together. Honor demands it.
So here is the thing. Because of the enormous consequences of going to war, it should be debated vigorously, loudly, and energetically before it begins. But once the war is joined, it is time to quit the debate. And don't give me this "I support the troops but not the war" stuff. The best possible way to support the troops is to do everything in your power to help them attain victory. That means "shut up and get with the program."
I was in junior high and high school for Vietnam, but anybody that paid any reasonable attention, as opposed to the propoganda driven, in many cases drug-addled, attention most gave that war knows that it was that the American public, not the NVA or the 'Cong, who cost us that victory. I shutter at the cost Spain will pay for its reversal on Iraq, not because we will inflict it on them, but because they have inflected it in themselves.
It sickens me that Dadmanly and Mustang have to defend themselves against this kind of stuff. They have people with IED's and AK47's to worry about. They should not have to worry about shots coming from back home.
I'd drop my subscription to any paper carrying Doonsberry, but I did that a long time ago. I am the most tempted to cuss in my blog that I have ever been, but I will resist. This next statement is inadequate, but the best decency will allow. Garry Trudeau go take a long walk off a short pier.