Saturday, March 03, 2007

Waste and Sacrifice

There has been a bit of a storm lately about what word describes the deaths and injuries of our soldiers in Iraq. The first assumption in the argument is whether Iraq is something the US should be doing or or is a mistake. Most of America believes it is a mistake, by a wider margin than virtually any other political issue. This said and allowed as a basis leaves another point, the feelings of those who've been harmed by this issue. The families and friends of soldiers and others killed and injured certainly have good reasons to not like the term 'waste' applied to their own.

Rep Barney Frank (D) and others have made the point that you do not gain ground in an argument by harming or offending those you are speaking for or attempting to persuade. There is a great deal of truth in this statement, words carry loading and for some people in this issue there has been great harm.

I'd like to change the ground under this argument, all of our soldiers are volunteers. These individuals have made a choice to serve the United States of America, they do not serve George Bush, Rush Limbaugh, Paul Wolfson, or any other individual. Their commitment is to their country and their unit. I do not care how pointless and stupid this war is, I do not care how stupid and pointless GWB is, this country and their fellow soldiers are not a stupid pointless commitment. Loss of life and injury is not a good thing, but it can occur for good reasons and devotion to country and fellows is good reason. I do not like the term waste applied to such a venture, Iraq is a waste in political, military, and social terms, what the soldiers have done is not. Sacrifice is the term used for a giving of oneself, it's better to let it go as that.

2 comments:

KISS said...

When I "volunteered" I knew right or wrong I must serve in any capacity Uncle Sam wanted...Would I ha dserved in Vietnam, No. I would have gone to prison, instead. When friends came back from Vietnam I neither praised them or argued with them I felt sorry for those injured and never had bad feelings for those that served. I also felt no hatred to those that chose not to go and served time. But I have never forgiven those that chose Canada and were given amnesty. With those in the Shrubs war, I feel very sorry for them, and I hope they come home in one piece and OK They deserve every piece of equipment for their safety and I despise the profiteers that cheat them. The GI's are doing what they think is best and that's OK with me...even if the war is stupid and for oil.

Chuck Butcher said...

I have always beieved that principles do not come without cost, whether that means serving in Iraq or Vietnam or going to jail to not do so. On that basis I did not understand the Canada 'option," since I was not a Canadian. The draft lottery made the issue, personally, a moot one so I did not have to go to jail.

It is never reasonable to make soldiers responsible for the political decisions of others.