Oh, I love those boots
beats killing any day, andy
Atrios posted this today:
QUOTE FOR THE DAY I: "I'd much rather be doing this than figthing a war," - helicopter pilot Lt. Cmdr. William Whitsitt, helping the survivors of the south Asian tsunami. Earth to Whitsitt: you're a soldier.
Earth to Sully: A rather large point of our massive Defense machine is its massive deterrent effect, along with the idea that we use it when we have to. We train our soldiers with the hope that they don't have to go to war, not so they make you feel big and powerful as you cheer them on to their deaths. It shouldn't shock you that a soldier would rather be helping people than killing them, even if he's willing to do the latter when necessary.
Another one of Sully's Deep Thoughts on the military:
i'm sorry but i pay for those soldiers to fight in a volunteer army. they are servants of people like me who will never fight. yes, servants of civil masters. and they will do what they are told by people who would never go to war. that's called a democracy
Well, how can an HIV+ gay Englishman have such opinions on how America uses force? It's not like he's ever thought of serving or could serve. Like Christopher "I 'm drinking as fast as I can" Hitchens, they have weird opinions on how Americans should kill people, and Hitch has even less excuse, since his father was a naval officer.
Only psychopaths like killing people. Sailors and soliders do not. They hate killing with a passion we can never imagine, because they also do the dying and see the misery. Killing is driving the teenagers who do it mad. Suicide occurs enough to scare the DOD and have them treat people for it. They would much rather be saving people than killing people. Only monsters behind desks can think killing is easy.
Sully's idea of martial strength is best suited for the back rooms of bars and not reality. He should pick up Band of Brothers from his local Blockbuster. I think he might learn that killing is not fun, does not make you feel manly and has a cost that you live with forever. See, since he can only relate to movies and fiction, an accurate, fact-based movie might help him understand reality.
Sullivan knows nothing about our military, nothing about war. Yet he cheers it on like a video game. War is horrible, no matter how rightious the cause and there are still men damaged from WWII in VA hospitals. Only the insane kill without guilt and regret. Sully, who has his own deep, erotic attachments to male strength (his posting for anonymous sex have been published online), confuses that with military policy. In his world, he finds that macho appeal deeply comforting. He's like the woman who only seeks to date rich, powerful men, no matter how badly they treat her. He only cares about the power, not the often cruel reality which lies underneath.
In real life, it only exists as an ideal. Real soldiers don't like violence because they get to receive it. Whitsitt doesn't get to just fly missions, people try to kill him. They shoot at him and want to kill him so he doesn't see his family again. And maybe, possibly, he might like to see his kids grow up and grow old with his wife. And maybe, possibly, he'd like to have memories of his life which don't involve killing reams of people and maybe saving a few lives.
Sullivan is really a power fetishist. In bed (as far as we know), in his politics. He worships and needs to worship those more powerful than him. He needs to grovel before them, to serve them. Which is weird, but it pops up in pieces like this. To him, the power of a soldier is god-like, untouchable. To the soldier or salior, he'd like to be home or at least not have to kill people to get through his day. But Sullivan misses that. Look his devotion to people who would toss him on a train to Dachau with a laugh. Only someone who worships power could do that.
posted by Steve @ 9:39:00 AM