Monday, March 20, 2006

How Has The War Changed Us?

"War is an ugly thing, but not the ugliest of things. The decayed and degraded state of moral and patriotic feeling which thinks that nothing is worth war is much worse. The person who has nothing for which he is willing to fight, nothing which is more important than his own personal safety, is a miserable creature and has no chance of being free unless made and kept so by the exertions of better men than himself." ~ John Stuart Mill

Recently, I received this e-mail:

Hey Mark:

Shaun Mullen here from a small blog called Kiko's House ( I stumbled on your blog this morning and noticed your post on supporting the troops (which I do, and not just because I'm a veteran) but not the war. Good stuff.

I'm asking readers of my blog and others in the know to comment on the following on the third anniversary of the war in Iraq:

How has the war changed the U.S.?

I'd love for you to put together a few well chosen words.

Thanks in advance and keep up the good work, Shaun

The words, "but not the war" sent up a red flag for me, but, nevertheless, I clicked the link to his blog. I couldn't get in. It wouldn't load except for just enough for me to see he is plainly a raving Liberal. So, no thanks. I won't be commenting at his place. If I want to be attacked and abused by left wingers, I will comment over at ER's place.

Remember, he says he supports the troops but not the war, however, in one of his many posts for Sunday, the 19th, he writes:

"[T]he military and Bush administration deserve to be skewered -- and then some -- for condoning what is clearly a policy of allowing torture."

The military deserves to be skewered? Oh yeah, he supports the troops.

What I saw when I linked over there, as far as my server would let me, was a diatribe against South Dakota for outlawing abortions. Obviously Mr. Mullen hasn't read too many of my blogposts, or he would know just how passionately I believe in the right of unborn babies to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.

They can hardly do that if they're dead.

I noticed then, that he wasn't afraid to use the oft repeated bumper sticker phrases that are so popular among the leftists, like "back-alley solution", and "repression of women's reproductive rights".

By the way, That phrase, "reproductive rights" when referring to abortion is about as disingenuous a phrase as the phrase, "I support the troops but not the war". Especially when he admits that he thinks American troops should be "skewered".

Killing unborn babies is not reproductive, whether it's a right or not. It is counter-reproductive. Has Mr. Mullen ever considered what the word "reproductive" means? How is one re-productive if they are preventing the reproduction?

The word is abortion. Don't be afraid to say it.

What he is advocating is not reproductive rights, but the right to kill innocent babies. And no one has that right.

No one.

But I will admit that he is a very good writer, and could very likely "skewer" me with words, which, admittedly, is another good reason why I won't be commenting on his blog. His profile says he is an award winning writer and editor. I am flattered that someone of his status would think that my humble opinion is worth soliciting.

As for my "putting down a few well chosen words":

I rarely choose my words well. Usually, when I sit down to type out a post on my blog, I have only a germ of an idea of what I want to comment on, but I definitely don't have any well-chosen words in mind.

But, since he asked so politely (which I appreciate, mind you, as so few leftist appear to have the capacity to be polite), I will put down a few not-so-well chosen words regarding how the world has changed since the war on terror began 3 years ago:

I don't know.

To paraphrase Will Rogers, "All I know is what I read in the papers, and on blogs, and hear on the radio and television". My view of the world is pretty much confined to my little corner of western Maryland and central Pennsylvania.

With that in mind, I can only speak for myself.

I've changed. I am more aware of how tenuous a hold we have on our own mortality. But it wasn't the war that changed me so much as the attacks on September 11, 2001. Suddenly we realized we are vulnerable to outside forces of absolute evil. No more thinking that we, as Americans, are unassailable.

I don't like or want war, but I think that fighting this war is essential to the overall safety of Americans. Consider how much worse things would be if we hadn't mounted an assault on the forces of evil in the middle east. How many more 9/11 type attacks would there have been here in America?

I also think, that even if Bush had lost the election and Kerry was now our President, we would still be waging war against terrorism. In spite of what Kerry and the other Democrats who now say they oppose the war say, I think in a time of crisis such as this, Americans who love freedom rise to the defense of the country.

Even Liberal Democrats.

The present opposition to the war they are displaying is simply, as far as I'm concerned, political in nature. The Democrats believe that opposing this war is their ticket back to political majority in the Congress and the Presidency. And as long as they have backers such as Mr. Mullen in the major media, they may be on the right track. I have stated before that the majority of the American people are more concerned with just trying to chase the American dream than they are with politics. And that is the hope for the Democratic party. That the everyday American stays ignorant about the consequences of voting for someone who may put America in danger.

I do think the world is safer since we removed the murderous dictator Saddam from power and put Osama bin-Laden on the run. When bin-Laden is pre-occupied with saving his own hide, he has less time to plan elaborate attacks on America.

I absolutely believe it is necessary to fight them over there to prevent having to fight them over here. I do believe if we cut and run, that it would encourage the terrorists to bring their Jihad to our shores. We would prove bin-Ladens assessment that we are indeed a paper tiger.

What leader, with only a modicum of common sense, wouldn't take advantage of what would seem to be retreat to chase down his enemy and finish them?

Overall, I would have to say the world, in general, is better off.

Hmmm, maybe I will comment over at his place.


Sheila said...

Looks like I'm the early bird. :) I hate to reve the motors every morning, but what the hey, right? LOL

OK, since you asked Mark. I am a 20 year Veteran. My son is in now. My Dad and My Grandad, My uncles. My Brother. It's A family thing.

I wasn't for the invasion of Iraq. However, Knowing the type of psychological BS that happens when you don't see support at home, I have lent my eyes, mouth, and arms to the effort.

I still have many Shipmates and fellow Veterans that are wroking in or near the Pentagon. The diferance between 2002 and now is seriously striking and sad. The consensus is that the Adminstration has tied their hands and they are frustrated.

I just talked to one friend, Life long republican, who just retired. An Aide to a 2 star. She said, "Finally I can Speak!" I will never, ever vote for a Republican as long as this mentality is still alive!" "They are killing our children when we could have gone in and won this two years ago"

I don't have to tell you that the Military is at it's end for energy.

I don't have to tell you that our military is being mismanaged.

We should have brought troup levels up at the very beginning. We should have gone into this with enough body armor. We should have let Military men plan and execute this war.

We are mired down in that country and the steam has gone out of the Iraqi people's sails too. They are worn out and are going to let the civil war happen.

I wish I didn't have to say these things. My own son is two months away from his next deployment.

The window of opportunity for many corrections have come and gone. And still Our young men and women will fight to the death.

The least we could do is barrage our congressmen and our president with letters saying we want this solved.

Simple solutions are there.

And to that end;

Yes I am changed since 9/11. I have lost a total of 12 friends and family on and since 9/11. I am torn between voicing my opposition to the stupid management of a war that could have been fought with "intelligance" and an ingrained training to be silent.

My faith in God and my faith in the knowledge that I am ready keeps me going.

How's that for an explanation. It's not as easy as some would think.

My son understands now. 2+2 may not equal 4 when the mathmatician does not understand the theory.

Dan Trabue said...

"The military deserves to be skewered? Oh yeah, he supports the troops."

Your writer said that they deserve to be skewered for supporting torture and it is absolutely true, I'm sure you'll agree, that any military leadership or individuals that support torture DO deserve to be skewered.

Where you and he/we probably part paths is you apparently believe that Bush and his military leadership aren't supporting/encouraging/using torture and the rest of us simply don't trust Bush that far. We think, given the evidence, that Bush and his cabal are using torture against our laws.

Mark said...

Sheila, I am not sure what question I asked to ilicit that response, but I can't speak to whether the military is right or wrong. I can't speak to whether the military is being mismanaged. But publicly, the party that is being the least supportive of the troops is the Democrats, not the Republicans. Perhaps the reason the administration has mishandled this, if they have, is because the Democrats constant criticism of the administration has caused them to move more cautiously than they should.

I can speak to the question posed to me. How has the war changed us? Well, apparently it has caused division between Americans. Perhaps that's the real purpose of the insurgency in Iraq. To create chaos and division.

The way I see it, the biggest obstacle we have right now to finishing this thing and defeating the terrorists is all this infighting and dissension. You have said it yourself. The psychological BS that happens when you don't see support at home has to have an adverse effect on our troops.

That isn't right.

No one one likes war, and no one likes dissension among ourselves.

And I thank you for your service.

Mark said...

Dan. I don't believe we are torturing prisoners. At least, not when you compare our treatment of them with their treatment of us. They saw off the heads of innocent civilians and shoot unarmed people in the head while their hands are tied.

We feed them Islam approved food and furnish them with Korans and allow them however much time they require to worship their God, while they callously torture and kill innocent men women and children for being Christian or Jewish.

I read an article recently that said the prisoners in Guantanamo don't want to be released. They are treated better there than they would be by their own people.

Dan, understand this:


Sheila said...

Sorry Mark.

The deal about an Investigation of Marines killing 15 Iraqis as retribution for a bombing of 12 marines last December had me a little upset this morning.

How have I changed? I'm trying to get BACK to the middle and calm people around me about the poor military.

As I said before, I lost 12 dear ones since 9/11. I am resolved, I am ready, and faithful.

What I wold dearly love to see is a country more actively engaged like we were in WWII. That would help the country alot. We are not sacrifising and getting actively involved and so we're going to have a lot of dissention.

My statements about the military stand though.

Erudite Redneck said...

Mark, your self-imposed blindess and willingness to believe the best when confronted with the worst are astounding. And it's not worth "skewering."

Fritz said...

A litany of hypotheticals in hind sight doesn't make you right. If the Johnson Administration could have had the current scenario in 1968 that we have today in Iraq, Nixon would have not been President. The publics sour mood with the effort in Iraq is a direct result of failure of Democratic Party leadership. What has changed in our Democracy, the Democratic Party's fall from power has left it without winning policy advocacy, to resort to attacking the credibility of the majority Party.

The moral hazard of a Kerry Presidency for Iraq would have been disastrous. Did you know that Clinton blamed the Blackhawk Down incident on Bush 41? Kerry would have had a free pass on any action he took and any failure of policy would have been blamed on Bush 43.

Mark said...

Sheila,you said, "What I would dearly love to see is a country more actively engaged like we were in WWII. That would help the country a lot. We are not sacrificing and getting actively involved and so we're going to have a lot of dissention."

Now that I agree with.

Fritz, you said, "The moral hazard of a Kerry Presidency for Iraq would have been disastrous. ... Kerry would have had a free pass on any action he took and any failure of policy would have been blamed on Bush 43."

I disagree with that, although with reservations. Kerry, and Gore, et al did not attain their present positions in the Government without being a leader. And leaders, in times of National security crises, lead.

ER, I have no idea what particular statements I made that you are referring to. I see very few positives in Democrats seeking to hinder the war effort with their baseless allegations of mismanagement and intentional falsehoods against Bush.

Gayle said...

I agree with you, Mark, but I will save myself the headache of arguing with any liberals commenting here. The reason I don't argue with them is because they keep bringing up the same old standard arguing points; all points that make absolutely no sense to me. I don't argue with rocks either.

Excellent post. I would suggest you don't argue with the Moonbat on his post either. Unless you enjoy giving yourself a headache. You will not get anywhere. :)

Mark said...

Thanks, Gayle. Actually I already did comment over at his place. I don't argue, tho. I simply stated my opinion. He can take it for what it's worth to him. I. Don't. Care.

Dan Trabue said...

"The publics sour mood with the effort in Iraq is a direct result of failure of Democratic Party leadership."

You people can keep saying ridiculous stuff like that, reading our minds to know what we think and what we believe - despite what we tell you we believe - but it won't change reality.

The reality is, the public is soured on Iraq for a variety of reasons, not the least of which is that it was - depending upon who you ask - wrong, immoral, ridiculous, deceptive or criminal to begin with.

And Mark, understand this: When we kill the innocent, whether we mean to or not, we become the enemy. Whenever we torture prisoners, whether or not it's "as bad" as what they're doing, we become torturers.

Bush and you can think we're the good guys all you want but that won't change perception. The only reality are our actions. Killing innocent people, torturing prisoners - either we're against it or we're supporting it. It's pretty clear-cut for most of the world.

Lone Ranger said...

How has the war changed the US? It has shown us the extent to which cowardly liberals have sissified America. It has shown us the total moral bankruptcy of liberalsm. It has shown that an increasing number of Americans no longer jump at the chance to liberate people in a repressive foreign country. It has shown the extent to which Democrats hate democracy, trying to find ways to undermine, betray and oust a duly elected President rather than beat him at the ballot box. The very nature of the question tells us that liberals don't know the meaning of sacrifice. They are not willing to do anything unless it benefits them. I didn't see any protests when Saddam was throwing children in jail, when rape rooms and torture chambers were in operation, when people were being pushed off buildings or having their tongue or limbs chopped off, when mass graves were being filled. The war has shown us the hypocracy of the left.

But it has also shown us that America still has hope. The military is still reaching its recruiting goals. Despite the lies of the media, young troops are still expressing their pride of service, of being a part of history instead of just reading about it and complaining about it in pseudo-intellectual debates. The war has shown us that we are still a people who are willing to defend the defenseless -- even if some of them don't appreciate our help. It has shown us that we are still the greatest, most courageous most selfless country in the history of the world -- despite the cowards who live among us.

Erudite Redneck said...

"Whenever we torture prisoners, whether or not it's 'as bad' as what they're doing, we become torturers."

Amen, Dan.

That whole first long graf of LR's is so full of delusion, it, too, is not worthy of skewering. Sheesh.

Moral bankruptcy? Hell, there's a Great Depression of Moral Bankruptcy in this country, and it started with George W. Bush's election.

Dan Trabue said...

LR said:
" It has shown us the extent to which cowardly liberals have sissified America."

People are living in fear, this much is true. Some have been engulfed by the fear to such a degree that they are willing to set aside liberties held precious by us for many years. Others are so held by fear that they are willing to commit atrocities in order to try to feel safer.

Others still are willing to follow a leader down dubious paths to try to squash whomever he labels as "bad guys" in order to give us some comfort, even if those being squashed include children and apparently innocent civilians.

Yes, Lone Ranger, fear can be a bad thing when it causes us to abandon common sense and morality (there's the nasty word again) and too often makes for poor policy-making.

Fritz said...

Kerry is no leader, he is a consensus follower. After the 2004 elections, what day did he pick to return to public view? January 30th, the day of the first Iraqi election. He was in a very foul mood because it was successful rather than a bloodbath for him to say I told you so. He is a political opportunist not a leader, and that was before he was for leadership, after he looked to France for direction.

Lone Ranger said...

The old,"that remark doesn't deserve a response" dodge. Pretty lame.

Mark said...

Fritz, don't confuse the political Kerry with the human Kerry. I really do believe he loves his country, and if he was in the position where he would have to decide whether to defend the country or to surrender, I think he would make the right decision.

Call it an unreasonable optimism, but I think any American would make a decision that is best for the country if it were up to him, even Kerry.

Think about it. He volunteered to go to Viet Nam. He might have gone there to intentionally set himself up for an eventual presidential run, but he was taking his life in his hands for his country, nevertheless, and you can't simply dismiss that fact out of hand.

Even President Bush acknowledged Kerry's service to his country during the presidential campaign, and thanked him for his service. In fact, that was the display of integrity that convinced me of President Bush's sincerity.

Erudite Redneck said...

LR, just matchin' lameness with lameness.

I have proven myself capable of changing my mind. Mark, too, although rarely. I've never seen any suggestion of that from yerself. I've no interest in full engagement with a fence post.

Mike's America said...

"Torture?" Yeah right! Does the guy even know what the word means?

We've got multiple sources from Human Rights Watch and Amnesty Interntational, the paragons of liberal virtue when they talk about Gitmo, documenting torture, and political killings in Venezuela and the lefties just ignore it.

Real torture they don't care. Benevolent treatment of psychotic killers and they go into a rage.