[This article was written for the Unz Review]
Depending on the context, the small word “why” can be totally innocuous or it can be just about the most subversive and even sacrilegious word one can utter. This is probably why I love this word so much: it’s ability to unleash tremendous power against all sorts of sacred cows and unchallenged beliefs. So,today I want to ask everybody why so many people feel the need to thank veterans for their “service”?
But first, let’s debunk a few myths:
First, let’s begin by getting myth #1 out of the way: the notion that US Americans don’t like wars. That is totally false. US Americans hate losing wars, but if they win them, they absolutely love them. In other words, the typical US reaction to a war depends on the perceived outcome of that war. If it is a success they love it (even if it is a turkey-shoot like Desert Storm). If it is a deniable defeat (say the US/NATO air operations against Serbian forces in Kosovo or the total clusterbleep in Grenada) they will simply “forget” it. And if it is an undeniable defeat (say Iraq or Afghanistan) then, yes, indeed, most US Americans will be categorically opposed to it.
Next is myth #2: the truth is that no US serviceman or woman has fought a war in defense of the USA since at least WWII (and even this one is very debatable considering that the US forced Japan to wage war and since the attack on Pearl Harbor was set-up as a pretext to then attack Japan). Since 1945 there has not been a single situation in which US soldiers defended their land, their towns, their families or their friends from an aggressor. Not one! All the wars fought by the USA since 1945 were wars of aggression, wars of choice and most of them were completely illegal to boot (including numerous subversive and covert operations). At most, one can make the argument that US veterans defended the so-called “American way of life,” but only if one accepts that the said “American way of life” requires and mandates imperialist wars of aggression and the wholesale abandonment of the key concepts of international law.
Finally, there is the ugly dirty little secret that everybody knows but, for some reason, very few dare to mention: the decision to join the (all volunteer) US military is one primarily based on financial considerations and absolutely not some kind of generous “service” of the motherland for pure, lofty, ideals. Yes, yes, I know – there were those who did join the US military after 9/11 thinking that the USA had been attacked and that they needed to help bring the fight to those who attacked the USA. But even with a very modest degree of intelligence, it should have become pretty darn obvious that whether 9/11 was indeed the work of Bin Laden and al-Qaeda or not (personally I am absolutely certain that this was a controlled demolition) – this atrocity was used by the US government to justify a long list of wars which could not have possibly had anything to do with 9/11. Hey, after all, the US decided to attack Iraq (which self-evidently had nothing to do with 9/11) and not the KSA (even though most of the putative hijackers were Saudis and had official Saudi backing). Besides, even if some folks were not smart enough to see through the lies and even if THEY believed that they joined the US military to defend the USA, why would the rest of us who by 2018 all know that the attack on Iraq was purely and solely based on lies, “thank” veterans for stupidly waging war for interests they cannot even identify? Since when do we thank people for making wrong and, frankly, immoral decisions?!
Now let’s look at another basic thing: what is military service? The way I see it, military personnel can roughly be split into two categories: those who actually kill people and those who help those who kill people kill people. Right? If you are a machine gunner or a tank driver, then you personally get to kill people. If you are a communications specialist, or a truck driver, or an electrician, you don’t get to kill people yourself, but your work is to make it easier for those who kill people to kill people. So I think that it would be fair to say that joining a military, any military, is to join an organization whose main purpose is to kill people. Of course, that killing can be morally justifiable and, say, in defense of your country and fellow citizens. But that can only be the case if you prepare for a defensive war and, as we all know, the USA has not fought such a war for over 70 years now. Which means that with a few increasingly rare exceptions (WWII veterans) ALL the veterans which get thanked for their service did what exactly? If we put it in plain English, what fundamental, crucial decision did ALL these veterans make?
In simple and plain English, veterans are those who signed up to kill people outside the USA for money.
Sorry, I know that this sounds offensive to many, but this is a fact. The fact that this decision (to join an organization whose primary purpose is to murder people in their own countries, hundreds and thousands of miles away from the USA) could ALSO have been taken for “patriotic” reasons (i.e. by those who believed in what is most likely the most lying propaganda machine in history) or to “see the world” and “become a real man” does not change the fact that if the US military offered NO pay or benefits, NO scholarships, NO healthcare, etc. then the vast majority of those who claim that they joined to “serve” would never have joined in the first place. We all know that, let’s not pretend otherwise! Just look at the arguments recruiters use to convince people to join: they are all about money and benefits! Need more proof? Just look at the kind of social groups who compose the bulk of the US military: uneducated, poor, with minimal career prospects. The simple truth is that financially successful folks very rarely join the military and, when they do, they usually make a career out of it.
As somebody who has lived in the USA for a total of 21 years now, I can attest that folks join the military precisely for the same reasons they enter the police force or become correctional officers: because in all those endeavors there is money to be made and benefits to enjoy. Okay, there must be, by definition, the 1% or less who joined these (all violent) careers for purely lofty and noble ideals. But these would be a small, tiny, minority. The overwhelming majority of cops, correctional officers and soldiers joined primarily for material and/or financial reasons.
By the way, since that is the case, is it not also true that the soldier (just like the cop or the correctional officers) has ALREADY received his/her “gratitude” from the society for their “service” in the form of a check? Why do folks then still feel the need to “thank them for their service”? We don’t thank air traffic controllers or logging workers (also very tough careers) for their service, do we? And that is in spite of the fact that air traffic controllers and logging workers did not choose to join an organization whose primary goal is to kill people in their own homes (whether private homes or national ones) which is what soldiers get paid for.
Let me repeat that truism once again, in an even more direct way: veterans are killers hired for money. Period. The rest is all propaganda.
In a normal sane world, one would think that this is primarily a moral and ethical question. I would even say a spiritual one. Surely major religions would have something relevant and clarifying to say about this? Well, in the past they did. In fact, with some slight variations, the principles of what is called a “just war” have been known in the West since at least Augustine of Hippo and Thomas Aquinas. According to one source they are:
- A just war can only be waged as a last resort. All non-violent options must be exhausted before the use of force can be justified.
- A war is just only if it is waged by a legitimate authority. Even just causes cannot be served by actions taken by individuals or groups who do not constitute an authority sanctioned by whatever the society and outsiders to the society deem legitimate.
- A just war can only be fought to redress a wrong suffered. For example, self-defense against an armed attack is always considered to be a just cause (although the justice of the cause is not sufficient–see point #4). Further, a just war can only be fought with “right” intentions: the only permissible objective of a just war is to redress the injury.
- A war can only be just if it is fought with a reasonable chance of success. Deaths and injury incurred in a hopeless cause are not morally justifiable.
- The ultimate goal of a just war is to re-establish peace. More specifically, the peace established after the war must be preferable to the peace that would have prevailed if the war had not been fought.
- The violence used in the war must be proportional to the injury suffered. States are prohibited from using force not necessary to attain the limited objective of addressing the injury suffered.
- The weapons used in war must discriminate between combatants and non-combatants. Civilians are never permissible targets of war, and every effort must be taken to avoid killing civilians. The deaths of civilians are justified only if they are unavoidable victims of a deliberate attack on a military target.
(Check out this article for a more thorough discussion of this fascinating topic)
Now Augustine of Hippo and Thomas Aquinas are hardly heroes of mine, but they are considered as very authoritative in western philosophical thought. Yet, when checked against this list of criteria, all the wars fought by the USA are clearly and self-evidently totally unjust: all of them fail on several criteria, and most of them (including the attack on Iraq and Afghanistan) fail on all of them!
But there is no need to go far back into the centuries to find authoritative western thinkers who clearly denounce unjust wars. Did you know that the ultimate crime under international law is not genocide or crimes against humanity?
Nope, the supreme crime under international law is the crime of aggression. In the words of the chief American prosecutor at Nuremberg and Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States, Robert H. Jackson, the crime of aggression is the supreme crime because “it contains within itself the accumulated evil” of all the other war crimes. He wrote: “To initiate a war of aggression, therefore, is not only an international crime; it is the supreme international crime differing only from other war crimes in that it contains within itself the accumulated evil of the whole.”
So from the 4th century through the 20th century, the people of the West always knew what a just war was, and they fully understood that starting such a war is the supreme evil crime under international law. But this goes beyond just major wars. Under international law, the crime of “aggression” does not only refer to a full-scale military attack. Aggression can be defined as the execution of any one of the following acts:
- Declaration of war upon another State.
- Invasion by its armed forces, with or without a declaration of war, of the territory of another State.
- Attack by its land, naval or air forces, with or without a declaration of war, on the territory, vessels or aircraft of another State.
- A naval blockade of the coasts or ports of another State.
- Provision of support to armed bands formed in its territory which have invaded the territory of another State, or refusal, notwithstanding the request of the invaded State, to take, in its own territory, all the measures in its power to deprive those bands of all assistance or protection.
Finally, it is important to note here that by these authoritative legal definitions, every single US President is a war criminal under international law! This, in turn, begs the question of whether all the wars fought by US soldiers since 1945 were indeed waged by a legitimate authority (as mentioned by Augustine of Hippo and Thomas Aquinas above)? How can that be when the Commander in Chief himself is a war criminal?
Let’s sum it up so far: we have folks who agree to become killers (or killer-assistants), who do that primarily for financial reasons, who then only participate in illegal and immoral wars of aggression and whose commander in chief is a war criminal.
And they deserve our gratitude why exactly?!
Maybe because so many veterans have been hurt, maimed, traumatized? Maybe because once they leave the armed forces, they don’t get the social and medical support they need? Perhaps merely because wars are horrible? Or maybe because the veterans were lied to and deceived? Or maybe because some (many?) of them did try to stay human, honorable and decent people in spite of the horrors of war all around them? When we think of the horrendous unemployment, homelessness and even suicide figures amongst veterans, we cannot but feel that these are people who have been lied to, cheated and then discarded like a useless tool. So maybe saying “thank you for your service” is the right thing to say?
Nope! These are all excellent reasons to feel compassion and sympathy for veterans, yes. But not gratitude. There is a huge difference here. Everybody, every human, and I strongly believe every creature deserves compassion and sympathy. But it is one thing to say “I feel compassion for you” and quite another to say “thank you for what you did” because that implies that the deed was a moral, good, ethical deed, and that is entirely false.
Major General Smedley Butler put it best when he wrote:
War is a racket. It always has been. It is possibly the oldest, easily the most profitable, surely the most vicious. It is the only one international in scope. It is the only one in which the profits are reckoned in dollars and the losses in lives. A racket is best described, I believe, as something that is not what it seems to the majority of the people. Only a small “inside” group knows what it is about. It is conducted for the benefit of the very few, at the expense of the very many. Out of war, a few people make huge fortunes.
If we agree that war is, indeed, a “racket” and that it is conducted “for the benefit of the very few” then it would make sense for these “very few” to express their gratitude to those whom they hired to enrich them. And, in fact, they do. Here is the best example of that:
Of course, Google is no more dependent on wars of aggression than any other US corporation. The very nature of the US economy is based on war and has always been based on war. The so-called “American way of life” but without wars of aggression has never been attempted in the past, and it won’t be attempted for as long as the USA remains the cornerstone of the AngloZionist Empire and the world hegemony it seeks to impose on the rest of mankind. But until that day arrives the “American way of life” will always imply wars of aggression and the mass murder of innocent people whose only “sin” is to dare to want to live free and not be a slave to the Empire. If you believe that those who dare to want to live free in a truly sovereign country deserve to be murdered and maimed, then yes, by all means – thank the veterans from the bottom of your heart!
But if you don’t believe this, offer them your compassion, but not your gratitude for their crimes.
It started with the concept of Manifest Destiny, slaughtering natives by the million.
Then comes Washington, a high Freemason and slave owner – who continued the genocide against a superb resistance of natives, by destroying all of their food supplies – leading to the deaths of olden, women and children. Winning conflict by genocide – truly the American Way.
Perhaps this is where Albright got the idea of “It was worth it”?
Then finally, the great Sioux nation, under the military leadership of Crazy Horse, in battles at Rosebud and Greasy Grass, demolished Custer’s force which was superior in numbers and weaponry, but definitely not in spirit, tactics or horsemanship.
And this – the first time the USA lost a battle on its own soil, is really the mould or template for their entire military.
More troops, more weapons, more big-mouth, (consumerism to the max), but inferior quality of soldier and spirit. How else can it ever be for a military which thrives on aggression?
The American way is the celebration of the suffering of their victims. From native Americans to Latin America to Palestine till Syria and Yemen
The Battle of Little Bighorn was not the first time the USA lost a battle on its own soil. Much earlier, between the Revolutionary War and the War of 1812, an Indian coalition largely led by the Shawnees, inflicted much bigger defeats on the American army in the territory of the Old Northwest. The Indians, led by the great Tecumseh, lost in the end, of course. Tesumseh is recognized as a national hero by Canada because he allied with the British and helped stop the American invasion northward before he was killed by the U.S. Army.
You’re right, Rick. I completely forgot that event. In fact, Tecumseh (the name that
General Sherman so conveniently borrowed for himself), was probably the first and
last chance to truly unite the warring tribes and smash the invaders, but it was his
brother’s treachery which brought about his defeat. I was referring to the defeat of
a United States army (after the civil war), not prior.
In Ohio the Shawnee surprise attack slaughtered three times as many US soldiers as Custer lost at Little Big Horn. This was the reason President Washington, working from Philadelphia, called his old pal Anthony Wayne out of retirement so he’d have a professional in charge next time around.
But the Shawnee handed George Washington a disaster that remains the record: It is still, after two and a half centuries, the largest loss the US Army suffered under native arms on American ground.
The whole “Ohio Territory/Old Northwest War” remains a complete black hole in US history. Probably because it was a true race war, despite the fact the Shawnee had British, Canadian and even dissident Americans fighting with them.
Many young Buckeyes, including this one, had a not-so-secret envy for the white frontier renegade Simon Girty (“Dirty Girty”) for joining the Shawnee coalition. But Girty had been a trapper when the land was free, and had married a Shawnee gal. He stayed true to his in-laws, and was killing Americans for the next twenty years to avenge their “victory”. Hard not to admire his spunk. And his marital fidelity.
So 600 United States troopers under Custer “outnumbered” 3000 American Indians under Crazy Horse and Sitting Bull? (More than half of those 600 escaped, only the little more than 200 troopers directly under Custer were annihilated.)
Manifest Destiny was a term coined in 1845–nearly 250 years after the first North American European settlers came to North America. Hardly “the start”.
Who,or what, was “slaughtering natives by the million?” Disease was the great killer of the estimated 7 to 10 million Native Americans living north of the Rio Grande when the Europeans came.
If you wish to make arguments from history, you do well to get your facts straight. Then we can discuss what they might mean. We certainly agree on our assessment of the Saker’s article. I suspect we agree on our assessments of American aggression since 1900 or so.
Your “facts”, it seems, stems from the US narrative, and perhaps a Hollywood movie or two. Suggest you read “The Day The World Ended at Little Bighorn” and “The Long Knoves are crying” by Joseph M Marshall III, a Lakota author, to gain an insight from the Lakota perspective?
The Lakota may have had 3000 or so people – including Cheyenne, Dakota, etc but this was total count of all people, including old men, women and children.
The soldiers who “escaped” were actually allowed to do so, after lengthy discussions amongst the natives as to whether or not to finish them off.
Here is the proof of mercy of real warriors which is so sorely lacking in the cut throat Uncle Sam military rabble, whereby the latter destroy everything that moves and beyond – the work of real cowards.
The native fighters also had weapons ranging from traditional bows, lances and clubs, to muzzle-loaders, hand-guns and a few breechloaders. Ammunition was extremely limited and varied, as has been evidenced by archeological exploration of the fight scene whereby old cartridge casings of a great variety and various vintages were discovered.
Custer’s force had hundreds of rounds of standard ammunition, and even though the “official” version tries to put the blame of the defeat on Custer’s force not having the latest repeater rifles, it was owing to superior fighters, fighting on superior horses, defending their loved ones and way of life that decided the outcome.
There is a summary of US fighting prowess. What a joke. Wake up.
As to the term “Manifest Destiny” the term was coined in 1845; however its concept was well crystallised before that time and led to the horrors perpetrated by the new settlers upon the native peoples. Many people act based upon certain beliefs without having any name for that belief. The term is coined to justify the prior events and so lead the perpetrators to believe that their acts were moral.
“…the ideology of manifest destiny was simply an aspect of American culture that all Americans believed in but was never defined. … In 1845 the phrase ‘manifest destiny’ was coined by John O’Sullivan.”
Quoted from link below
The earliest colonists used the Old Testament/Torah, with its litany of God-ordained genocides of the Israelites’ enemies in Canaan, as ‘Holy’ justification for their massacres and genocides in North America. The same tactics were used-the destruction of crops and animals to hasten starvation, and the deliberate targeting of women and children to effect the extermination. These tactics remain the same today, for both racist, terrorist, states, the USA and Israel. And, as the Yesha Council of Rabbis and Torah Sages, a highly influential Judaic extremist group, pointed out in 2006, under Talmudic Law, killing civilians is not just permissible, but is, in fact, a mitzvah or good deed. International Humanitarian Law to the contrary they contemptuously dismissed as mere ‘Christian morality’.
thanks I shared this on Face Book
excellent!! Putin is right up there with Sitting Bull
Saker even if i dont agree with the last part of the article (veterans sorry mercenaries dont deserve any sympathy they knew exactly what they were doing) God bless you and your familly. May you always see the truth clearly. I will be quoting this article forever
Saker explicitly says that veterans deserve sympathy but not gratitude.
As i said for me they deserve noether gratitude nor sympathy
Every single US soldier is a psychopath and a war criminal.
Every single US soldier?? No way man! Some, for sure, but most are honest, good people. Most have been duped by propaganda from Empire.
Overall, great article by Saker! Wholeheartedly agree with content and conclusion.
The murderers of innocents deserve contempt not sympathy.
I’m so glad to see I’m not alone. Saker, I can’t thank you enough for your service!
Its part of the lie of “fighting for our freedom” flogged by government and the media. Its makes people feel good about their country instead of ashamed of its crimes. You are one of the few that attack this absurd fallacy. Recently Virgin airlines in Oz wanted all passengers to say it to any vets on board, fortunately we are not yet as bad as the US, even the vets attacked the idea, it was then dumped.
Here, The Saker is the messenger … Do Not Shoot the Messenger !
Add to all of this, the “sanctions” and the continual meddling in the affairs of other countries … I won’t bother to list them and take up a whole page.
Frequently I have to take walks and deep breathing exercises to rebuilt positiveness and continue “forward”.
For a decade now I hear ordinary folk saying, “The world has gone mad” …
We are living in a very ugly world, akin to a cesspit.
This is a difficult read for many, but remember … Do Not Shoot the Messenger !
Spend energy thinking about what is being laid out for scrutiny … for reflection.
“All’s well that ends well” so the saying goes, but this BS is not going to end well, is it ! …
so we need to do something about it … “What to do” ??? should be the nest call.
The world has gone made. Typical western thought thinking they are the centre of the world. Its them and their stooges who practise their 500 long traditions of colonialism and imperialism and mass murder who have gone mad. The rest of the sane world is resisting their madness.
… a keen observation … you are correct, and then I have heard “the chickens are coming home to roost” … similar to “you reap what you sow”. Western peoples do not have government anymore … we are lost … we are losers !
Self centredness may be bad is not mad.
The problem is not Western thought unless of course you include Russia as part of that – they are the second largest Global arms exporter.
Putin helps defencless countries defend themselves against the US. He does not indiscriminately dole out weapons like the US does.
Janis, why doesn’t Putin go before the United Nations and point out to the whole world, like the Saker did in this article, that the World Trade Center Towers (and wtc7) were brought down in controlled demolitions? That would pull the rug of freedom and democracy nonsense right out from under the traitors running the US government and their argument claiming moral authority would go up in dust, just like the towers….
Dutch, yes Putin knows how the towers were brought down he also knows he is dealing with a psychopathic 3 year old with a loaded gun Announcing this before the U.N. would only do more.harm than good
Rewarding the servants of empire generously is a logical product of Imperialism. It is just like in the Roman Empire when soldiers were rewarded with lands and pensions after their service, even if they started off as slave backgrounds. Empire needs expanion and war. The USA has never been isolationist. During the ‘isolationist’ phase, USA banks were funding others wars, in order to mutually weaken rivals to USA future power, and making proto Color-Revolutions rather than fighting directly- which is why in early 1900s, USA banks simultaneously gave big loans to French, British, Nazi Germans, Italian and Dutch empires, Japan, Bolsheviks, Young Turks, and all kinds of armed groups. Prolonging wars and printing magic money from their safe haven on the other side of the world, they only stood to gain. Peace in Eurasia is disaster for the USA economy. They need chaos and confusion.
The only peace acceptable for USA is when they directly occupy and administer territory, like Germany until recently with all its bases and puppet CDU politicians. NATO was formed to protect territory like the Imperial Roman army did, cetainly not to help the Gauls etc. Trouble for the occupiers is, now Germans realise that they are puppets and see the refugees from USA wars (who like the occupying USA soldiers are direct servants of Empire) and are becoming openly Pro-Russia, as with Italy. Austria and Hungary. Despite all the anti-Russian media, Europeans see Russia as more of an ally than USA for the first time since the war. Will the USA and UK fight against an EU army? Will Russia help the EU and forgive them for their previous slander against Putin? Yes. same as Russians forgave Turkey after its centuries of war against Russia and now they became strong allies. Russian people know Europe and its people are not the problem, but the puppet leaders are.
USA functions only when it is an empire, the most expansionist, brutal and cunning ever seen, built on the combined previous experiance of the Brits who plundered before them and spiritually guided by the Zionist-Protestant fundamentalism from the Old Testament and Talmud, seeing them selves as exceptional chosen people
Now Russia and EU with its own army and China and Iran and Syria and Venezuela and goodness knows how many more are all lining up against USA and its hapless little buddies UK, Israel and Australia. They know Eurasian integration is the end of Anglo era, very soon European children will stop learning English and instead learn Mandarin, Russia and Arabic, the main languages of New Silk road trade. Already in some schools in Italy and Turkey I heard this is happening. English Language will be seen as a language of Opression and people will no longer wish to speak it.
Wonderful article Saker. The newly recruited US soldiers also seem to not understand their Oath of Allegiance too. Perhaps many of them are functionally illiterate.
Actually, China and Australia very recently had a joint naval/military exercise.
The Australian government a couple of years ago leased Darwin Harbour to a Chinese operator for 99 years, much to ire of the Pentagon because Darwin Harbour is the main supply route to a US Marine/Airforce base to the South, the Chinese got San Diego Navy Base too. Darwin Harbour is the home naval base to the Australian fleet that is active to North East such as the islands Chinese are building up.
It’s quite obvious to some who really know what is going on Australia that we too have a split in the military/political circles, the local Deep State and the Patriots. As an Australian I suggest that you specifically define who are “hapless little buddies” rather than the generality you have penned.
About 4 to 5 years ago the Australian government did an $80 Billion Natural Gas deal with the Chinese, and the money the government collected on the deal they invested the whole lot in the AIDB, the Asia Infrastructure Development Bank. It was then the biggest foreign investment in the AIBD. As a result of that deal you see buses all over the country with big writing on the back of them in both English and Chinese “Powered By Australian Natural Gas’. The Australian governments and military are keeping in with their traditional allies as well as forging security/big business relationships with all our Asian neighbours. This is a term called “having an each way bet” borrowed from horse racing. If the favourite horse loses then you can still win on an ‘outsider’. Furthermore, the Central/Federal government and state governments are all really just corporations doing multi $Billion deals all day long, In Australia donations to political parties do not have to made public. The patriots here are are making sure, we the people, know what’s really going on. Julian Assange is an Australian!
I remember during the last Democratic Convention prior to the elections in 2016, the father of one US soldier killed in Iraq (both parents were inmigrants from Pakistan) said “My son was a hero”…my god…I tried to explain to a friend of mine from the US (I am not from the US and I do not live in the US) that “his son” was not a hero but a criminal. Why ? Because when you enter the US Army, unlike when you enter, lets say the Peruvian, the Finnish or the Jamaican Army, you know that, sooner or later, you will be sent to a foreign and sovereign land to kill innocents. Probably in this case, the heroes were the iraqui parents who tried to protect their sons or grandchildren, from the invading (and criminal) foreign Army. My friend , after a while, understood what I was trying to explain to him.What the soldiers father said in the Convention, shows the way a whole society is being manipulated just with a few simple words. Even the “assimilated” inmigrants (like this father) use them.
Very well said. In one word veterans and cops are mercenaries.
They are worse then mercenaries, at least the mercenary knows by definition that he is a gun for hire, and because of this, there is a chance he could be hired by the more righteous side. The American soldier is always on the side of oppression, and doing the bidding of the oppressor. Both do it for material gain, but the mercenary has a chance to be on the more justified side.
Are you calling me a mercenary?
I served 5 years with 5RVR, rather than face the possibility of going to Vietnam. I joined the Victoria Police after an ex-boyfriend shot my eldest sister in the chest with a shotgun in the front yard of my parent’s home in front of her two very young children on her 24th birthday. For that; you are calling me a mercenary!
I served 17 years and sixteen days in the Victoria Police Farce, and in that time like most policemen I never had to use a firearm, though I did get to use my baton once in 1970/71 to clean out an indoor glass pane that was broken whilst we were playing indoor football. You know, once we were used to protect the community, and our greatest weapons was our honesty our integrity and our intelligence.
I retired ill-health in 1985 after running into a brick wall called corruption, but even today there are still many honest serving members; their main problem being once they realise what they’re in, its too late to escape as there are families and mortgages; the total debt slave trade.
Most of you are older and should have more common sense. We were told that our education didn’t start until after we left school, and think upon it, just how old are the kids that join the military? Teenagers or just past that age, and they are still naïve and uneducated.
One of my Pipe-Majors served in the HLI. He grew up in Glasgow and when he finished school he had two choices of employment, the army or the coal mines. Both would kill you!
How many Americans join up once they’ve finished schooling? Yes of course they believe the bulldust that’s been pumped into them. How many these days have a choice of what their career moves are going to be?
But have you noticed something? The US Army has not only dropped their standards so as to reach their required quotas, but they’ve also recruited foreigners from South America on the promise of citizenship to supplement those dwindling ranks. Why do you think that is?
Are there psychopaths within the U.S. armed forces? Of course there are, just the same as any other armed forces, and here I think specifically of the FBI agent, James Yacone who served in Mogadishu and was a player in the episode called ‘Black-hawk down’ where he played a major role, and then returned to the US where he joined the FBI and became involved in ops such as Orlando Colorado theatre massacre, The Sandy Hook psy-ops, the Boston Marathon Bombing psy-ops and then the hi-jacking of MH370.
And Ahmed, please! Have you ever considered the difference between an ordinary policeman, or soldier and a mercenary? Could it be that the mercenary enjoys his work including the possibility of killing? Could it be that the number of American servicemen who end their own lives by suicide do so because they find life too difficult after serving in a war zone!
Now what was it that Heinz Kissinger said about serviceman being insignificant pawns.
In his battle against his father-in-law, at the Battle of the Boyne, William of Orange used Danish Mercenaries as he didn’t trust the British, That battle permitted William’s associates to create the Bank of England in 1694, and henceforth the British Army became the Banks and ‘The East India Company’s’ bully boy. Then Sassoon took on China and again the British Army fought ‘The Opium Wars’ for Sassoon and the British East India Company.
FDR told Churchill at one of their meetings that Britain had to forego their Commonwealth and Churchill didn’t bat an eyelid, but after WW2, it was the US that took over the mantle of the world’s policeman/bullyboy and that is still ongoing, but not for much longer, one would imagine.
Every American has read of ‘their heroes’. They have been conned into believing that they should lift up the flag and carry it forward against the foe. Here is an Irish song that emphasises this point: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RQBW6UQa8Fc
The gist of this are the words, “I’d read of our heroes and wanted the same, to play my own part in the patriot game’ and that is the barb. In Australia we are told ‘Lest we forget’, but the fact is they have all forgotten the lies told by our pollies that got us there in the first place.
@Andrew S MacGregor
I think you misunderstood my comment. I never said anything about cops being mercenaries. I was responding to Fayez’s comment about soldiers being the same as mercenaries, even though Fayez also mentioned cops in his comment. I dont agree with that, i think cops are necessary in human society. I wanted to explain the difference between a traditional mercenary and someone who joins the US Army, and what it implies. The mercenary always goes to the highest bidder, so its possible that the group can be bought by the more justified side in a war. The US military on the other hand is a tool of oppression, the situation becomes less gray here, its a war machine who’s reputation is known through out the world.
Now if your talking about individuals, thats hard to judge because i cant judge the intentions of a person. Thats why its important to speak out against the crimes of the US military, so young Americans don’t join. So they dont have to have that struggle you mentioned. But if they join, thats a choice they made, and whatever comes from it, they would have to deal with it. As you said “Every American has read of ‘their heroes’. They have been conned into believing that they should lift up the flag and carry it forward against the foe.”
Now in my opinion, if you use the word “mercenary” loosely, it can be used to judge any profession. For example lets say i’m studying to become a doctor, and my main motivating factor is the paychecks, not the treatment of the patients, or other altruistic reasons. It would be fair to call me a mercenary. If you use the word in this sense, it can apply to any profession that offers monetary compensation.
Thank you for your reply.
Were you aware that in 2003 an RAF pilot was court-marshalled for refusing to fight in Iraq and was sentenced to prison for his crime?” Of course, once it was disclosed that the British went to that war on false evidence there was never any reprieve for that officer that I am aware of.
Now let me dwell on corruption for a while. Corruption always starts from the top not the bottom. It is a police sergeant that leads the constables into corruption, not the other way round. It is the Police Commissioner who ignores corruption that permits his officers to accept monies called bribes, including payments from governments.
And finally corruption flourishes under corrupt governments. In about 2006 a report was tabled in British Parliament that stated that corruption within the British Police had reached the levels of third world countries. Associate that with Blair’s corruption and you should start to get an idea.
Now then, when you consider the US army, they have never really had the proper training guidance or professionalism that other countries had, and that goes back to WW1. Whose fault is that? The term G. I. for the US soldier meant ‘government issue’.
Amazing response! So true on multiple levels.
Thank you. Exactly, perfectly said in every single word. It’s exactly how I feel and the Saker put it in writing.
I have stated these exact sentiments to so many, they turn away and tube out immediately.
Major General Smedly Butler “Quotes”
There are only two things we should fight for. One is the defense of our homes and the other is the Bill of Rights.
War is a racket. It is the only one international in scope. It is the only one in which the profits are reckoned in dollars and the losses in lives.
War is just a racket… I believe in adequate defense at the coastline and nothing else.”
Saker, just excellent.
Particularly, and I quote you: ” In simple and plain English, veterans are those who signed up to kill people outside the USA for money”. This sums it up excellently.
Alexander the Great, beheaded all the Greek Mercenaries fighting on the side of Persians, except big number of Athenian mercs, whom he loaded on the ships and sent them to Athens requesting public executions.
This is how you deal with mercs.
The real vets are those, who fought for their country defending it against the invader. US was never invaded.
OK, the vietnam vets were dragged into that war, so this can be looked at slightly different, but it was still an invadoer’s war. The 3mln Vietnamese killed fighting them, were true heroes.
I was just reading an article talking about big numbers of Serbian population experiencing many health problems, particularly cancer, as a result of the invasion on Yugoslavia in the 90’s.
Another, good one. Let me quote my father, who spent almost three years fighting against Germans in WWII, who every time he heard some western media complaining “unexpected losses” would say: “what do they think, the other side hands out candies?”
Or some comments, like: “but my son did not sign up for it”. Hmm, I wonder what did he sign up for, if not for “some target practice”.
My father often talked about some of his friends suffering from what he called “polemitita – war syndrome?” I guess today we call it PTSD? My best friend’s uncle spent all his after the war life in psychiatric hospitals, which is an unfortunate price many soldiers have to pay, but never thought about it before signing up.
I believe Yugoslavia was the first victim of uranium tipped artillery shells.
A new quality of war crime.
You are correct, because Iraq was after, and as far as I know they seem to have the same problems as Serbs.
Well,sign up,go abroad,commit atrocities -wipe whole families,villages,torture “saboteurs”,discharge.What follows,PSTD -a revenge by the victims.Takes no prisoners.You morph into a cabbage or it gets you the cheapest and most available tool(s) to suicide.
Good write-up, thank you Saker.
However the title of this article is a bit misleading and perhaps insulting to some who are veterans of purely defense armed forces such former Warsaw Pact and such.
It should state, “Thanking US vets for their “service” – why”
Bravo Saker! All your points are undeniably true and very clearly stated. I salute your courage in publishing these truths in the face of the world’s greatest disinformation and propaganda machine – the US government.
The military is the huge death squad of the evil US Empire. These are the oligarch’s tools for murder and pillage around the world. The US Military is the most shameful group in the world today, composed of those willing to kill their brothers and sisters for money.
Agreed. This Empire as all those before it, need the might of its military to back the economic vampire squid it aspires to in order to feed the disproportionate benefits/lifestyle of its citizens and elite.
My question for further discussion is with the moral justification of defensive war engagement. Where does the familiar defence strategy of ” offence is the best defence ” come in? In rationalization terms it is indeed heavily used to bring the populace around is it not?
“one can make the argument that US veterans defended the so-called ‘American way of life,’
but only if one accepts that the said “American way of life’ requires and mandates imperialist wars of aggression . . .”
That is what it requires. Heard an expression the other day: “1776 worldwide.” Because the concept of America is made from liberalism and continuous revolution, many Americans literally believe they should be spreading “1776 worldwide.” These people are freemasons. Some may not be in a lodge, but since America is conceptually masonic, they fully believe in world revolution. A “neocon” is someone with enough time of his hands to actually believe in American ideals.
I disagree with the rest of assessment. It’s difficult to say why some Americans support some wars, and not others. The so-called left was against Iraq. Why? Because Bush used Evangelicals to get elected. They thought he was Christian, and thought they were stopping a conservative Christian. Retarded, yes. Anti-war: no chance. Clearly, something like Democracy Now is not anti-war. Democracy Now translates as 1776 worldwide.
Americans suck up to “the troops” because liberalism makes people into suck-ups. Dog-faced butch women will suddenly drop to their knees and open their mouths if they happen on a man or woman perceived to have power. Of course, the weakling, the sodomite, can rise through the ranks in such a society because he’s so accustomed to being on his knees and taking it from behind.
People say thank-you to bus drivers in Liberal societies. Some of them even suck up to mailmen. Why? Because they are nice? No. Because they are suck-ups. They are sycophants. They love the military because they are afraid to be caught not loving a man in uniform. They will become angry at you for not sucking up. Why? They hate men. They hate God. They hate Christ. A sycophant will try to destroy anything that stops him from bringing everyone to their knees, where he is. They are out to kill the king, the King of Kings, or anyone that says No when expected to drop to his knees and say yes. 1776 worldwide is America. Didn’t T. Jefferson mention “swearing before the altar of God hostility against every form of tyranny [even male genitals, Tommy? is truth tyranny?] . . . blah, blah, blah.” Precisely. That’s America, everyone down there on their knees, bringing everyone down with them. No tyranny? No truth. No King. No Christ. “1776 worldwide. Democracy Now”
Understand that liberalism, to the bone, is Lucifer against God.
Paul! Saying “Thank you” is a statement of appreciation, not necessarily a “Suck up”. From what you have written, I assume you would never say “Thank you” if a stranger held the door open for you with nothing to gain from it. I also assume that you wouldn’t hold the door open for someone else because you fear they would think you are “sucking up” to them. I assume you would never say “Thank you” for an invitation. I think that’s sad.
Not a pleasant world to live in. “Please” and “Thank you” add a little grease to the “machinery” of life. Also, here in conservative/Republican Missouri, with not a “liberal” in sight, people are courteous, hold doors open for strangers, say “please”, “thank you”, and help people with car problems on the side of the road. A simple “Thank you” for any service rendered makes the world a better place. The best to you!
I suggest you learn the difference between sychophancy and good manners.
Sycophancy requires a master-slave relation, in which the latter seeks to ingratiate him/herself with the former, for some material benefit.
Good manners requires nothing but consideration of another person, irrespective of their rank or role..
Ironically sychophants are typically rude to those they perceive as their ‘inferiors’, or those they consider ‘expendable’ in their quest for gain.
Failing to thank a bus driver in my country for getting everyone safe to their destination is considered bad manners/ arrogance. Exactly the traits of sychophants…
I walked with MJK in the 60s. I picketed my deranged Republican representative, Duncan Hunter who was instrumental in promoting the U.S.’s First Use nuclear policy. I’ve been fighting these RW scum all my life. (I’m aware that they now control both parties) The groups I’m with, some who are 99% Vietnam Vets risk physical violence every time. A RW nut tried to run them down with his pickup a few years back. Naturally, the law let him off with anger management classes, LOL. I knew one beautiful girl who died as a result of RW counter demonstrations against racism in N.O.LA. in the 60s. Most of my friends are clearly aware of the degenerate nature of our leaders and the fact of our helplessness. I’m posting this so that non American readers can understand what it’s like in Amerika for those who are even slightly conscientious. Thank you for what you do, Saker. We’re in your debt.
I am a veteran. Of the hundreds of men and women I served with,
I don’t know of any, myself included that, that served out of pure patriotism
(Like a Pat Tillman).
It was all about the benefits, job training, retirement, etc.
Thanks. I’m really happy you mentioned Mr. Tillman. We shouldn’t forget him. Shanti.
I thought about Pat Tillman as I read the Saker’s piece. Misguided to put it nicely. The double irony is that unlike many of the US military recruits, he was a star NFL player who certainly did not need the money or benefits and that in the end wound up with his head blown off by “friendly fire”. I’ve wondered about that since his parents claim in his last letters he had come to have a change of heart about what he was doing. He must’ve had a serious wake-up call. So, maybe, it was not so “friendly fire” as the last thing the military would want is a White guy with fame, money and a platform coming back and denouncing what they are doing in Afghanistan and Iraq. If Colin Kaepernick was banished from the NFL for his actions, imagine Pat Tillman who is the wrong color to be taking down US exceptionalism and supremacism. People of color can be written off as malcontents or worse people whose opinions never count anyhow. He, however, would hurt the optics every time the F-16s flew over before a game he would be participating in and he chose to take a knee and essentially curse the US flag. Being White he could not be so easily dismissed or buried and would cause some serious cognitive dissonance among the “I thank you for your service” crowd. I’ve said for a long time now that more than another MLK, we need another John Brown. Make that several.
I read several articles back when Tillman was in the news that claimed he had figured out the bullshit behind the war, and was complaining about it, which would explain the military killing him.
Absolutely Wayne. He’d be a real thorn in their side like Smedley Butler who likely survived, I understand, because he was too well known, connected and decorated to be summarily killed off or disappeared.
How do you feel about what you be done? Genuine question.
I served post Vietnam…during the Carter era. Veterans were treated more like crap then heroes.
Jobs were scarce to non-existent for young people, which was why I joined. I was actually proud to serve as I still believed in the country then..before the bombing of Yugoslavia and the other crimes….the pre Imperial days.
Also patriotism isn’t blindly following what your government tells you to do.
It’s wanting the best for your country I do junk the best for any country isn’t committing mass murder and genocide don’t you ?
I get what you are saying, but I would like to play devil’s advocate here. We have been told many times, and I am going to talk about Germans in WWII, that they could have refused to follow orders. Now, I can say those comments are always pushed by, as we call them today, liberals who never held a weapon in their hand. So, to continue lets look at the situation where your platoon commander gives an order you do not really like, you are faced with dilemma: ” if I refuse, he at best writes me up for insubordination, at worst shoots me on the spot for same”. Being shot by your commanding officer would not be an unusual thing. He is facing dilemma also: “he gets an order which he has to follow, or he gets court marshaled at best by his commanding officers.”
So, war is a bitch, the point is not to get into it, because once you in it, you do the shooting.
I am not trying to whitewash anyone, just saying.
Going back to Germans. Because my mother’s grandfather was a head of a village, Wehrmacht officers decided to stay in their house. And the commanding officer was a nice person, showed them pictures of his family and gave them his extra food including chocolate. So not all of them were bad, but they had to do what they were ordered to do. I am guessing that if there was something bad in the village, he might have been forced to act differently. Also, people in the Wehrmacht were draftees, except the officers, who most likely were commissioned.
So if you r ordered to paticipate in the torture of resistance leaders or civilians (since u r on this website i assume u know were innocent) hello abu_ghuraib u would do it
Also if u saw officers rape and torture children then set the family on fire would u keep silent hello AbeerAlJanabi u would do it
I sincerely highly doubt that ur commanding officer would point blank shoot u for refusing to commit mass murder because after all american blood is more expensive than palestinian or iraqi blood and we cant be spilling it willy nilly.
Even after all that, if you are religious or not dont you ever wonder late at night if these arguments would be enough for God. Dont you ever wonder about judgement day when all the people you have wronged (or in this case murdered directly or indirectly) will stand before and will demand retribution for the unspeakable horrors they suffered do u really think ur “they told me to do it” would be enough.
If u believe God is just then you must believe that God is just to all his creations.
Pat Tillman, economically well endowed, was bored playing Cowboy and Indian or maybe it was Cardinal and Indian. He thought it would be fun to go play war in real time. Tillman did not reason he would be tackled from behind by his own ‘side’. The US military had plans to parade Tillman around the US as a poster child for recruiting, maybe riding in an armored vehicle at football games and redneck car races.
In every human population there is a distribution of psychological characteristics among the individuals who make up that group. On one extreme are those lacking human empathy and compassion, while being over-endowed with greed, egomania and a love of violence to intimidate and bully, or even exterminate, their ‘enemies’. This type is known as the ‘Rightwing Authoritarian Personality’, or, otherwise, the psychopaths. They vary in the intensity of their symptoms, but the basic type is all too familiar from history, and the contemporary world.
To achieve their aims, of dominance, exploitation of and extortion from others, and egotistic display, they long ago created economies based on destruction of the natural world and exploitation of others. These gradually morphed into what we know as capitalism, an omnicidal cult that mimics cancer in its innate destructiveness and lust for eternal growth. Various mechanisms to heighten the exploitation and accumulation of capital were invented down through the years, such as interest extortion on loans, and the organised hyper-exploitation of colonialism, imperialism and genocidal campaigns to remove indigenous populations in coveted lands not yet subject to destruction through commodification and extraction to the point of ecosystem destruction.
This cancer, Rightwing rule mediated through capitalism, has reached its End Stage. Ecological devastation is causing a planetary collapse of life-support systems. Inequality is growing rapidly, debt is gargantuan and unpayable (even the interest on the debt is near unpayable)resources are rapidly depleting, and the monster thugocracy that runs this system, the so-called ‘West’, led by the greatest force for aggression and destruction in human history, the USA, is lashing about in its death throes. While its own society collapses into a swamp of internecine hatred, crumbling infrastructure, debauched popular culture, mass obesity and metabolic disease, record incarceration, rigged elections, failing education systems and control by a Zionazi Fifth Column that works for the interests of Israel and the Jewish moneyed elites first, and America only incidentally, if they obey orders, the psychopathic ruling US elite spends over one trillion per year on ‘defence’. But as with everything else in the Empire of Lies, ‘defence’ is actually maniacal aggression,threats, invasions, sanctions, subversion and sabotage, directed at ever more of the planet’s states. This Moloch controls over one thousand foreign bases, and its Special Forces death-squads operate in well over 100 countries. Yet this unparalleled Evil, which is even, plainly, prepared to cause a species-ending war with Russia or China, declares itself ‘Exceptional’, ‘Indispensable’ and morally perfect. To state the obvious, this is lunacy and a frontal assault on Truth and Reason. Yet everywhere in the West, the presstitute scum who infest the Rightwing propaganda sewers they call the ‘Free Press’, peddle this delirium without a hint of dissent, not among thousands of loyal propaganda operatives, and with total unquestioning Groupthink. Surely we are being driven by maniacs towards a global Jonestown of coerced self-destruction. Trump, inverting Marz’s dictum, is the farce preceding the great tragedy.
In a word, “Expediency”.
Politicians need their votes and merchants need these abused people as customers.
They have been swindled or self-swindled and almost no one feels comfortable either ignoring them, counselling them (too complicated and painful to explain to them how they were manipulated into committing evil.in the relatively small…….and aiding and abetting it in the Very Large ) or further punishing them for the fact that they submitted to mind control, were fooled, …were STUPID.
So the myth and the farce is perpetuated.
The best hope lies with the authority of those who have survived this deceit, know it inside and out, personally….and have the sanity and strength to get to the root of the problem (the Manipulators of Empire).
These people do exist, and in growing numbers.
Otherwise, the problem is age old and not limited to North America. The absurdity is just more clearly delineated here by our “lucky” geography.
But others also squander their luck (Englishmen…first to industrialize…first to “rule the seas”…..Frenchmen with superior artillery due to the scientific advances of the Ecole Politechnique…thinking it “noble and glorious” to join the fascist Bonaparte….all letting it go to their heads and become mind-controlled minions and cannon fodder for the masterminds of war and Empire) in a fit of unconscious egoism and succumbing to fears, pride and gullible manipulability comparable to one big herd of insane, suicidal, fratricidal lemmings:
Onward Christian soldiers
Marching as to war
With the cross of Jesus
Going on before
Onward then, ye people
Join our happy throng
Blend with ours your voices
In our triumph song!
Fools, and brainwashed zombies that Christ would doubtless spit on.
… in England our school day began with an assembly for news, The Lord’s Prayer and a hymn. Two hymns have always grated on me … “All Things Bright and Beautiful” and “Onward Christian Soldiers”. At five years old I knew all things bright and beautiful to be faulty when in Summer big fat blow-flies hovered overhead looking to suck up some human perspiration and help out with eating my food. Got a very painful wasp sting about the age of ten which was ‘beautiful’ and some of my school friends had obvious problems … spastic/polio … then there were the bullies with their extreme arrogance … psychopaths on the way up. Beautiful fighter jets and beautiful laser technology … Louis Armstrong can engage us with “what a wonderful world”, but then we are left to deal with reality …
Louis Armstrong – What a Wonderful World (Good Morning, Vietnam’s Soundtrack)
‘Onward Christian soldiers Marching as to war’ – the warfare of Christians is spiritual, to engage the real enemy in prayer warfare. Ephesians 6:12 – For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness.
I pray that He would have performed an exorcism –a mass exorcism– on these folks marching off to war. Way too often, War is a crime against the Creator and the created. I believe there is virtually nothing that prevents the Children of Light from effectively praying for this mass exorcism to happen, right now, and for the evil to be bound and cast into the abyss. Worth a try, definitely! It may even change the course of history. A conspiracy to commit good. What if our passion, our daily prayer, was for forgiveness and Redemption for the sins we have committed? There have been times in my life when I truly felt that I have been forgiven, and when that happens, a person is on the narrow path to Resurrection — no one is too “old” for this.
Thank you, Saker, for this article, and as always, I thank all of you for your insights and comments.
Excellent summation. I would go further and say all Americans are complicit because of their self-proclaimed “exceptionalism” and their belief and support for the “right” to impose their will on the rest of the world.
When this thing pops, and it will, karma will truly be on an epic scale.
I would go further and say even the act of silence and nonchalance to what your give is inflicting in your name is complicit agrrement
This quote of Imam Hussein a holy man in Shia doctrine sums it up nicely
“Those who are silent
when others are oppressed
are guilty of oppression themselves”
Hussain ibn Ali (as)
Thank you for this
The funny thing is when I picked up the mail this morning there was a give to us in it. Usually all these go from the box to the recycle. This one was for veterans who had been hurt.
I was insulted that anyone should assume after spending over half of my taxes on the MIC that i should then have to donate more to the so called hero’s of murder. So I kept it, and wah-la. Saker helps me out with a response to these corporate give me machines.
It will help me be more concise so thankyou.
What is your policy about reposting or sharing your work? I am in the process of revamping an anti war movement and I would like to share this and some of your other work.
My policy is that every article posted on the Saker Blog is licensed under the Creative Commons CC-BY-SA 4.0 International license (creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0). This means that once it is posted here, everybody will be free to not only re-post/share it elsewhere in any medium or format but also to adapt/modify it for any purpose, even commercially. In other words, as long as I am first to publish it, once it is published it belongs to you and everybody else. My goal is not to make money or seek personal fame or recognition, but to promote alternative ideas/views. That is called “copyleft“, the exact opposite of “copyright”, which I like to call “copywrong” and which I loathe. So not only do I allow reposts, I ENCOURAGE them and there is no need to ask for permission.
you are very welcome!!
I agree entirely with the article. I would also add that I really object to hearing about people who “gave their lives” for whatever allegedly noble cause. Unless we are talking suicide missions they didn’t “give” their lives, they risked their lives and lost, usually when attempting to take the lives of others.
Thanks for putting this out there Saker. This is the ramifications of the disease called exceptionalisim(which it self stems from Pride and Arrogance). If you go to the root of any problem in the world it always stems from Pride, arrogance or ego, of either an individual or a group. Thats why humility is such an important teaching in the sacred traditions, its also something we have to struggle for. As a disclaimer i live in the US, so i have firsthand information. Look how Muslims have been completely dehumanized by Hollywood, News and other media outlets. Inhabitants of the US believe they are somehow the standard bearers of humanity, so by extension it also goes out to the US military. So anyone the US military is fighting against must be brutes, barbarians or savages. Even those who speak out against the Iraq war(Bush Jr version) have this mindset. As they begin listing all the negatives of that war, they mention the 5,000 or so US casualties at the top, as if the lives of 5,000 criminals were more important then hundreds of thousands of innocent Iraqis who lost their lives. Many people think America has very simple problems, like the Conservatives think “if we do so and so we can fix this”, and the liberals think “If we do so and so we can fix this”, and the evangelical Christians think “if we do so and so we can fix this.” These groups have no idea how corrupted the “American way of life” is, and how they all been duped to worship the false Idol of American exceptionalisim. The more you learn and understand, the more you recognize, that because of their pride, arrogance, vain glory, and ego they truly hemmed themselves in with their own hands. A country with fake news, fake politicians, fake ideals and values, can only create fake heroes.
“As a disclaimer i live in the US,”
I could live in the US tomorrow if I want but I would not do it even if the US goverment offers me 100 million dollars. Probably you have a good job, other than that I could not understand how people could live in the US. BTW, I agree 100 % with all you said in your post.
Some people were born there. And most people find it hard to move away from their home.
Besides, we are rapidly shifting to a world where everyone must stay where they are born or be reviled and hated as awful migrants.
Yes my friend, you are right. Living/not living here in the US is something i been dialoguing with my self for the past decade. I applaud you for not moving here and adding incrementally(by taxes) to the funds that pay for this vast criminal enterprise, which haughtily tramples over others.
These groups have no idea how corrupted the “American way of life”
Sorry Ahmed but they know exactly what they are doing.
Remember Hilary laugh at ghadaffi brutal murder
Remember that 500 000 were worth it.remember Abeer Al janabi
A 14 year old child gang raped by American soldiers and than tortured and burned alive with the rest of her family.only because she was living in front of a check point in Iraq in 2006
Quick “Google “( yeah I know this is intentional Google search to see the opinion of the sheepole)
The first result is an article by reuters titled tearful soldier tell court of rape-murder.
Stories like these is how I understand why God wiped so many people before the people of Noah because they reached such crazed heights of arrogance greed brutality Pharoah behavior that there is nothing else to do but wipe them of the map. The us Americans are reaching this level in record times
Yes my friend you are right. I should have worded that better, what i was going for was they know but they hide these things in order to justify their exceptionalism, at least internally. The media helps them by providing them low hanging fruits(excuses/feel good stories), so the people dupe themselves to cope with the horrors, of this thing they take so much pride in. They cover their eyes, and shut their ears. Thanks for calling that out.
Yes i remember those crimes, may Allah’s (swt) curse be on each and every one of them. To recount the sins of the US you would need a book that reaches the clouds. At the end we all must return to the originating point, so if they deluded themselves into believing they have fled justice, they have a huge wake up call at the end of all this.
God(swt) knows best what will happen with the US, all i know is it wont be a happy ending. They sealed their own fate, with their own hands, using the free will that was given to us humans as a responsibility. When you wipe out all values, morals, ethics, and make everything subjective or relative this is the end result. They believed these lies, so they can chase every selfish desire that presented itself to them.
You bring up a fascinating point at the end, about the previous civilizations that Allah(swt) destroyed. Its always been something i wondered about. I have sat down and tried to figure out all the reasons why previous civilizations got destroyed. From what i can gather the US hits a check mark on every single thing. I would love to maybe research this topic more so we can further discuss this topic, it always fascinated me. I really wish a scholar wrote a book solely on this topic, sure you can find a lot scattered throughout different books, but it would be beneficial if we had a book solely focused on this topic.
I enjoy reading your posts, keep telling the truth. Peace my friend.
There is such book.well I found this book revolutionary even if Arabic isn’t my native language it made me see everything in a new light it’s سنن التاريخية في القران لمحمد باقر الصدر وهو
كان استاذ السيد حسن نصر الله و سيد كمال الحيدري
تحدث على أن الإنسان على مر التاريخ يمكنه تحدي بعض سنن الله مثل الشواذ و لكن لا بدّ من حد يبلغه فيطبق عليه ما تنشره الله و نتائج تحدي سنن الله على مجتمع و ما هو
مجتمعع فرعوني و تركيبته
As I said Arabic isn’t my first language and it’s very difficult to get my point across but I can’t stress enough how I too asked myself the same question and that book answered many.
Also this great man wrote the book our economy which is essentially what the Islamic revolution economic system is based on. He died at the age of 46 kidnapped with his sister also a remarkable scholar by Saddam they were tortured for 3 days then buried in an undisclosed location.the details only surfaced after the fall of the dictatorship
Here is a direct download link of the book https://tinyurl.com/y8lmbapq
Nice, thanks for the link. Yes my friend, you are talking about Al Sayid Muhmmad Baqir Al Sadr(may Allah have mercy on him). The tyrant Saddam killed him in 1980. The man was a true genius, i posted some excerpts from his book Falsafatuna(Our Philosophy) here on this site before. I will leave a link of that comment below, so you can enjoy it. Yes Iqtisaduna (Our Economy). He was planning on doing a whole series of books to explain all facets of human life, but the despot Saddam stood in the way of that. Yes he supported the revolution in Iran, he was a friend of al Sayid Ruhullah al Musawai al Khomeini the father of the Islamic revolution in Iran. Saddam killed him, in fear of it spreading into Iraq. In Our Philosophy he breaks down all the different government systems, and philosophical ideas that held sway at that time and basically dismantles them. One of my friends told me he wrote Our Philosophy at the age of 11, i dont know if thats true though. Heres a link to my comment where i post his total deconstruction of capitalism. I know you will enjoy it. Salam Alykum
Thanks I will read the book you recommended, God willing
If I may…I am not a judge of this work as being “scholarly” or not but you may want to have a look at the work of Jared Diamond, his Collapse, on the reasons various civilisations in human history failed.
Oh! Boy, if this is not hornet nest. Lots of folks are gonna be gunning for Saker and lots of invective will be thrown around about this piece as it hit them where it count. Whao! At last, somebody says it the way it truly is; the cold hard truth. Thanks for daring to write this.
I went to Vietnam as an 18 year old volunteer fulfilling my spiritual duty inculcated in me by my mother and of course the times. She always used to read Psalms and Proverbs in the mornings since I was about six and I was the oldest. One of the sayings from the Old Testament was “how can you sit home when your brother goes to war?” Some of you have read my previous posts.
I’m going to post a poem in the cafe again I think, called true commander.
When at at the reception station I was literally watching on tv Ariel Sharon at the front of a tank column (I think it was him ) heading off into the Sinai and cheering with a bunch of other young guys. As I mentioned before, my love affair with him ended when he left the gates of that camp open as it were.
Smedley Butler, who wrote his book in the thirties, had a very “American” sharp perception of why American wars were waged and started. In Europe the picture then was more patchy. The First WW had been a purely British attempt to stomp out Germany, which was becoming a danger to the Empire. Unfortunately for Germany the coarse set by the Great “Oarsman” (Bismarck) was not followed by the young hot blooded Kaiser and Germany was toiled down eventually, No “Dolchstoss” rubbish, the German armies were at the brink of extermination and the people starved, re the British blockade.
The conditions set out in Versaille set the scene for a future showdown, reparations, land grabs etc. It also in Germany easily nurtured a very nationalistic mood, that turned into a movement, rather broadly supported.
In the first years of WWII who was in war too survive as a nation and who were in war to make another nation keep its hegemony ? My nation was run over in hours on the 09.04.1940. Those that died on that day, defended their nations borders against foreign aggression. I think Norway,the Netherlands and Belgium (Finland later) can tell a similar tale, Czechoslovakia had been tamed in 1938 and was at the outbreak of WWII a mere shadow of it self.
Russia at a later stage is also to be included in those who fought a war of defense. Although its actions in 1940 is nothing to boast about, it did buy Russia time though).
War in our part of the world was not always a racket, but with the emergence of NATO is certainly has. Anything the US touches will eventually turn into a Golem.
You notice I do not include France and Poland, well they were playing games, ang whipped because of it.
Many join the US military for the opportunity to murder, rape and loot. Chris Kyle, the American Sniper, is a text book example of a sociopath finding a supportive organization that facilitated his blood lust for murder. Those soldiers who voluntarily serve multiple tours of duty in various war zones may be sociopaths as well, just not as prolific as Kyle.
As an American anti-war activist, there is one question that occurs to me when I am constantly told to “Support the Troops.” The question is this.
If I was living in Berlin in the spring of 1940, would I then be obligated to “Support the Troops” as they invaded France and the Low Countries? Or perhaps in the Summer of 1941, would I be obligated to “Support the Troops” as they invaded the Soviet Union?
Or perhaps, if I was living in Moscow during the spring of 1968, would I then be obligated to “Support the Troops” as they crushed the Prague Spring?
“every single US President is a war criminal under international law!”
Carter did not wage a war of aggression during his term. I believe his only military act was the failed hostage rescue mission in Iran. Of course, in America Carter is generally reviled and regarded as a failed and weak President.
Here is some reading:
@The Saker & Anon
Yeah, and if i was a betting man, i would wager that all the Presidents after Trump will also be war criminals. So if people want to keep voting for people that will eventually have blood on their hands, feel free. On a related note i heard on PressTV that Trump already exceeded the amount of drone strikes that Obama did, when it comes to Yemen.
… noticed and extracted from the counterpunch article …
“It would be another 22 years before the U.S. experienced blowback on its home soil, when one of the “Anti-Soviet warriors” they had courted and helped train from Saudi Arabia would mastermind a plot to turn civilian airliners into missiles that were flown into the World Trade Center and the Pentagon.”
In America, veterans are now regarded as first class citizens, while those who did not join the Army, go abroad, meet interesting people, and then kill them are regarded as second class citizens.
Check out the hiring policies of the Federal government and almost all American corporations. They clearly state that they proudly give preference towards hiring those who have killed for their cause. Or, look at American elections, where any candidate who is not a proven killer is promptly attacked for their “lack of service.”
Bravo Saker! You fired on all cylinders on this one. The war-like ethos saturating every part of US society has been there from the start. From the giving of infected blankets to unsuspecting Native Americans, to the enslavement of a whole group of people, to the only use, so far, of atomic weapons and the bludgeoning of seven countries and counting since “9/11”, war in its different guises has always been both way of life and necessary mechanism of control for the US empire. Instead of “we fight them over there so we do not have to fight them here,” the motto should be we kill them over there so we can enjoy our iPhones, Game consoles and large flat-screen TVs over here. There is no denying that many everyday US denizens live vicariously through the exploits of their military. Except, as with Vietnam, when the blood-letting hits close to home. Then they protest loudly and burn their draft cards. The viciousness of the ruling class is matched by the obsequiousness of much of the US population. The servility is such that it really makes me puke. It’ll be interesting to see the reaction when they come under direct attack. If “9/11” is any indication the hysteria will reach out-sized proportions.
This is just one of the many fantasies of empire, fed to the little people to keep them warm and snuggly in their happy beds. This way, they can wake up in the morning, all virtuous and refreshed, and ready to run overtime on the hamster wheel of their debt-masters cage.
But Saker, this is the fate of any country whose derivative money is accepted as the worlds unit of account in trade. Isn’t really the debt of our fellow taxpayer which we honor and give thanks too? Since after all, it is the debt that keeps the rats in their cages which backs this world money … money that is fractionalized into a derivative reality where propaganda and happy thoughts rule the day ….
Profound article on ethics and morals, Saker.
Drills to the core of hegemony and imperialism and full spectrum dominance.
It is exceptional because your tack never steers away from the flesh and blood component of military crimes.
You chart a rational argument that is undeniable and impossible to counter with logic.
And, as corollary, it illuminates the charges against Russia and China as “aggressors in their neighborhoods”.
The aggression charge is based in full knowledge by US and UK, EU, NATO and the vassals that criminalizing Russia with this stigma could result in expulsion from the UNSC or loss of its voting power on the Council.
So, projecting on others the crimes of aggression is the way of the Hegemon, thereby making it reasonable for citizens of the US and its “allies” to join militaries fighting such aggression.
When white phosphorus and cluster bombs are dropped on innocents in Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan, the cover for the US is “coalition” forces bombed, not the US alone. Since these allies sit also on the UNSC, nothing can happen to bring charges against the Hegemon.
We all understand the reality of U.S. global hegemony. The only group that does not understand are the most lied to, bamboozled, fleeced and tricked—the US taxpayer and voting citizenry. And the most ignorant of those groups become volunteer military.
This article tears off the veil of “innocence”. The crimes of the US Military are bare naked, and there should be no thanks nor gratitude for serving as accomplices to the crimes.
Saker, you have blown the whistle on this topic. Hereafter, it will be a resource for others, in all countries, to consider as top grade challenge to militarism anywhere.
. . . except, it could be worse.
No, not in the cliched sense of: “we’d be living under the thumb of the Gestapo, if not for America”. But, in the infinitely more mundane sense of a continuing Pax Romana; but is this really mundane? Yes, by all informed consensus, it is the very dredges of humanity; yet, in essence, it remains . . . an unrevealed mystery. But, how can we prove this? . . . well, only by default. Because, when in dire need, all perfectly come to understand: “man is wolf to man”; and see completely depraved men eat their own children, the Romans begin to look benevolent. In other words, maybe it’s quite bad now, but, it could be worse, far, far worse; and unfortunately, it very much looks as if it will be.
Always something that I found mind-boggling, the fawning over for the one day.
Ouch.. that is aimed straight. Only minor quibble is over use of the veterans for all branches of the military. (As an ex Coastguard myself not US).
at least how i was raised its the principle is held high – details frequently not so much. so its a matter of perspective.
example – freedom of speech is a big deal. but most things people actually say are likely to be dumb. if one mistakes the principle for a specific instance of the principle it can/does get ridiculous admittedly to hold high, lofty what any one person says with their freedom of speech on any particular day.
if the author is pointing out that specific concrete instances of service are often not as lofty or dramatic as the abstract principle of service then fine – but that relationship seems pretty obvious for most ideals vs day-to-day real world examples of those ideals ?
Being aware that America is a nation built on genocide “from sea to shining sea”, I agree with most of what you say.
You do, however, make a distinction/draw a line with WW2 vets and those that came after. I have to disagree with you here as many vets up until the late 1960s were conscripts and had only the choice of serving or being prosecuted. I could hardly call these men mercenaries. Since the days of the all volunteer army, though, I do agree fully.
Perhaps if we brought back the draft we might see a more measured approach in our foreign policy as, once again, everyone would have ‘skin in the game’ and would be keen to ensure we are not going off fighting unnecessary wars. It was the draft, after all, that begat the anti-war movement of the 1960s.
As it is, the majority of the population is removed from any involvement in our wars and, if they are involved, it is of their own choosing. That tends to lead to a blase’ attitude towards our shenanigans abroad which actually allows our government to engage in even more of these (mis)adventures.
A disengaged populace basically gives free rein to those that would do us, and others, harm.
Great article – an ex army friend once told me that a lot of the special forces guys (here in NZ) become “greenies” or join do some social services after they get out, initially I thought that they were doing this to get over whatever they had to do in their service, but later I realised that deep down they knew that the whole system was immoral and wanted to find some form of
One thing I realised is that it was difficult/impossible for me to have any credible moral stand while I’m still connected to this immoral empire (I’m under no illusion about NZ’s “sovereignty ”).
Take your brilliant example of google
I use it everyday (along with many other services in the world empire) so that kind of puts me in the “those who help those who kill people kill people” basket (5 to 10 times removed perhaps).
That is to say -to be part of the empire is morally disempowering -there is no real peace there.
The true answer it seems is to be found in your final paragraph wher you mentioned “a truly sovereign country”. For a long time I have considered sovereignty to be the key to all- if you don’t have it you ain’t got nothing (but a comfortable western slavery).
This verse comes to mind
Revelation 18:4 (KJV)
4 And I heard another voice from heaven, saying, Come out of her, my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues.
Pentecostals generally point their finger at the Catholics when they read this , but I came to see that the whore is everything (protestants included) -the whole system
“be not partakers of her sins”
Sovereignty is impossible for one person alone but needs a whole network of people acting in concert
The problem in the west is that the system has turned us into trained slugs and even when faced with truth people don’t want to know
So I have yet to find a way out
Epic submission — thank you for your outstanding lucidity, Saker. It’s needed now more than ever before.
The following passage is a scientifically accurate assessment of the exceptional, indispensable garbage all along the line:
”First, let’s begin by getting myth #1 out of the way: the notion that US Americans don’t like wars. That is totally false. US Americans hate losing wars, but if they win them, they absolutely love them. In other words, the typical US reaction to a war depends on the perceived outcome of that war. If it is a success they love it (even if it is a turkey-shoot like Desert Storm). If it is a deniable defeat (say the US/NATO air operations against Serbian forces in Kosovo or the total clusterbleep in Grenada) they will simply ’forget’ it. And if it is an undeniable defeat (say Iraq or Afghanistan) then, yes, indeed, most US Americans will be categorically opposed to it.”
In short, this is the paradigmatic Oppressor Nation mindset. When you suck in the world’s labour output and natural resources for free — starting right ”at home” with premeditated land-grabbing, genocide, ecocide, and slavery — your national culture inevitably goes totally Satanist, celebrating violence, greed, cruelty, and all sorts of depravity. Self-pity on the part of your average Pindo is beyond redemption and below contempt. The Pindo sympathy to the hilt for the squatters/murderers tormenting the Palestinians is no accident; it’s the same ”national experience” which calls for a heartfelt outcry of joy and sympathy.
your national culture inevitably goes totally Satanist, celebrating violence, greed, cruelty, and all sorts of depravity.
Exactly exactly hence the great Satan coined by the Iranian s as always they are spot in defining the enemy
I read Shaara’s book ‘The Killer Angels’ hot off the press in 1974, so new the ink was still wet. I already knew the story of the 20th Maine in the Gettysburg battle, but Shaara put it in a better, albeit ‘fictional’, perspective.
I don’t remember in clinical detail much from that novel with one glaring exception. I remember Joshua Chamberlain, the CO of 20th Maine, having a philosophical discussion/argument with his father before the war. For you youngsters, people actually did that before TV and the internet and eye phones, conversed and discussed face to face somewhere besides in a bar.
I remember that Joshua Chamberlain argued that Man was close to being an ‘angel’, and I’ve never forgotten his father’s retort lo these forty some years later:
“Well, man may be an angel, but if he is, he is surely a murderin’ angel.”
Wonderful article.. It was waiting for me just as I returned from confronting virtual signaling right wingers at a meeting of our Social Club who were trying to shame all of those who did not show up for their Veteran’s Day Rah-Rah celebration complete with sad, reverent lighting of the candles for the dead . Such maudlin crap!!! Especially since these are folks who were in offices in Japan during the Vietnam war or in the navy . Not a combat veteran in sight unless he was a professional combat veteran i.e. one who makes his living by being one or a counselor to other PTSD vets so he has to play the part for the civilians and for the funding.
I said ,to no effect, that this was an issue that divides the American people today i.e back off (hint, hint ) but their self righteous onslaught continued so something inside snapped and I blurted out , ” Maybe if this country would stop waging wars of imperialist aggression, you would have more of a turn out for Veteran’s Day”
And from then on…after an appalled silence …. it was on!!! The meeting then had to be abruptly adjourned soon after.
What a waste!!! I am continuing my slog through Gulag Archipelago but there are times of absolute “gross out” like the charade when Maxim Gorky visits the camp. And how he abandons the young boy who does tell him the truth to be hauled off and executed. It took me a month to pick it up again . At present, I am bogged down in the building of the Belomor canal. page 86.
The spiritual heirs of those who ran Russia then are here in the USA today. There are those who slap this term or that term, on them, but they have their own peculiar American manifestation. And the needs of the times have changed but in their social engineering for a purpose lives will not matter except in so far as these can be used to up fulfill said purpose. Cold, cold. No wonder winter has come early in the East as blazes still haunt the West Coast reflecting this chaos of total imbalance.
”The spiritual heirs of those who ran Russia then are here in the USA today”
Reading suchlike proclamations, one is tempted to sigh: If only… Stalin and his government were anti-fascists, mind you.
Thank you,Saker, for putting into words what so many of us feel. I am personally tired to death of all the emotional and political blackmail associated with “supporting the troops” and thanking them for their service.
All I can do is applaud.
I believe you overlooked my post.
Sorry,I haven’t seen another post from you so far on my shift.If it was before (?) it might have fallen into spam.Or,if an earlier Moderator found it violated the blog rules it would have gone to Saker for review.MOD
Ah well… Maybe you can recover it from spam?
Once it is deleted in spam we can’t get it back.If you want to repost it I’ll review it.MOD
Thank you for the kind reply and the offer–but it’s not that important :-)
I am a Vietnam era veteran, a tank gunner, who was drafted in 1969, and was very much against that war, before, during, and after, and all the other US wars of aggression since than. Spent my time in Germany. Occasionally, over the years, up to today, in certain situations and places, someone will give me this “thank you for your service” business, which kind of stuns me momentarily, and I think how naive these people are. I always reply, “hey I got paid”. Makes them go away thinking.
Did you try for Conscientious Objector or was the fear of prison just too much https://www.huffingtonpost.com/thom-nickels/conscientious-objector_b_4029879.html ?
“CO applicants in 1969 were required to write an essay explaining one’s beliefs. If that essay was accepted, the next step was a Q and A appearance before the local draft board. After the hearing a decision would be rendered, at which point the registrant would be obligated to obey the board’s decision. A rejected applicant must enlist in the Army or face a two-year prison term. Because a fair number of COs were then in prison, I was told to be open to that possibility.”
Saker My Orthodox Brother,
I agree with you up to a point, but I also think that when we judge the deeds of the US Government we should judge them in a historical context. Is the US Regime the bloodiest regime in history or is it just one of many bloody regimes? Are we bloodier than the pre-Christian Romans? Are we bloodier than the regime of Alexander the Great or Genghis Khan or Tamerlane? Are we bloodier than the Nazi or Soviet regimes?
I find myself thanking Veterans who served up until the end of the Cold War (especially. Korean War and Vietnam Veterans) because I know a good number of them truly believed that the Soviet Union and it’s communist allies were an existential threat to our nation and the “Free World” and that they were truly serving to defend Freedom and Liberty. I think the same way about the Red Army Veterans of the Soviet Afghan war. Many of them truly believed ( and there was truth to this belief given that Afghanistan borders Soviet Central Asia) that they were defending socialism and a struggling socialist government against Western Imperialists and their Mujahadeen allies.
Maybe you’re right that we can show our compassion in other ways than thanking those who volunteered or were sent to kill foreign people in foreign lands for the lies of our elites, but when I see an old vet I see my grandfather (who was a World War II Veteran and served in the Color Guard for the funerals of veterans in Kansas City) and I shake their hand and say “Thank You For Your Service”.
Is the US Regime the bloodiest regime in history or is it just one of many bloody regimes? Are we bloodier than the pre-Christian Romans? Are we bloodier than the regime of Alexander the Great or Genghis Khan or Tamerlane? Are we bloodier than the Nazi or Soviet regimes?
That all depends on how you count: from what date to what date, what do you include/exclude from the count, whether you include the war casualties figures or not, etc. Personally, yes, I think that if you measure what the “US regime” (that is the political system as opposed to any one specific Administration) has done (Native Americans, African slaves, imperial wars, exploitation of nations and entire continents like Latin America, internal oppression (prison industrial complex), support for violent insurgencies and various terrorist organizations, millions of deaths due to sanctions,destruction of nature, capitalist economic exploitation and oppression of the poor, etc.) I do find the US regime is the worst in history. True, the Soviets and the Nazis has a lot less time, but that is hardly an excuse. Overall, yes, I find that the Anglo hegemony over the planet has been the most violent and evil one. It is also the only one which might destroy our planet in a nuclear holocaust (the Nazis could not do it, and the Soviets did not do it).
I know, this is hard to comprehend while living in the USA, surrounded by a relatively prosperous society and friendly people. But I assure you that the view of the USA from abroad (where all these issues are openly discussed) is a very different one.
Yep, I never fell for that BS either. Around the time that I graduated from university I was constantly bombarded with US military recruiting to become a commissioned officer in either the army or the marines. And then there was also the subtle CIA recruiting in my university’s political science department… But the message was always the same (from both the US military and the CIA): “it’s a great career,” “you’ll go much farther than you would in the private sector with your (shitty) degree,” “you will be able to retire at a younger age,” etc. They always made primarily financial arguments, rather than ‘patriotic’ appeals.
But as an ideologically strong anti-imperialist, I never for an instant considered doing something that I knew would be evil, like fighting (or spying) for the freaks that rule the USA. I remember thinking, “I’d rather work at McDonalds than join the US military.” I still feel the same way today and I am very thankful that I never sold out.
They always made primarily financial arguments, rather than ‘patriotic’ appeals.
First create an economy where the poor are indigent, then offer them only three ways out: military, corrections, police. It’s really very simple.
Nowadays I observe that recruiters try it twice: first, before you go to college they offer to pay for it; then, they come back and offer those who did not join the military to pay for their student loans. Either they catch you before, or after. Smart system for sure, but evil and cynical…
Thank you, Saker.
The thoughts in this essay are exactly those that I once tried to debate with many US Americans, before I happily went into voluntary exile twenty years ago, when I realised that very few were willing to listen to the truth, and that my days trying to expound on this topic, in language very similar to yours, were likely to end in some kind of imprisonment, and certainly in ostracision.
So, I am exceedingly glad to see an essay such as this, which will at least act as a slap in the face to those who refuse to heed its veracity, and will justify those of us who have endured the gaslighting from the majority opinion, which is all lies.
I wish to add an aside about General Butler. You see, he went to a private boys academy in Southeast Pennsylvania called the Haverford School, not to be confused with Haverford High School, which is a public institution. Such private institutions are feeders into both the Little Ivies as well as the Ivy League itself, and, as all such things do, prides itself on what is sees as its illustrious alumni and faculty. For instance, its current headmaster (note that rank: he’s not a Principal, and he’s always a “he”, if it’s a boys’ school) was a career Army officer and is a hard-core neocon to boot.
The point is that Butler is (or was) very much East Coast establishment.
The reason I mention all this is simply to say that Butler is among his school’s highest-achieving alumni, and in fact no other such alumnus has received a Medal of Honor, much less two, as Butler did, and yet no mention is made of him at all. He has only recently been officially associated with his former school, and this official silence, despite his service to the Empire, is indicative of the brutal and amoral mindset that both feeds on and maintains the Imperial dogma, and is obviously especially well-represented in its elite schools. So, for Butler to reveal what he did is seen by the Imperial establishment as some of the blackest treason ever to issue from the mouth of an Imperial servant, and it explains the freezing over of his name.
They couldn’t kill him, because he was too well-known and had too many friends: it would have been like killing Captain America himself. But they did kill his legacy, in retaliation for his exposure of their war crimes. That legacy still does not make much mention of his only published work “War Is A Racket” (from which you’ve quoted), choosing instead to vaunt his many military achievements, which Butler himself excoriated.
Thus, I wish to make clear what a truly exceptional man Butler was. He repudiated his entire military career as immoral, and this is equivalent to repudiating his entire life up to that point. To make up for it, he spent the 30s as a peace activist, denouncing the drive to the war that was rapidly building then, reviling the past wars in which he made his career, and explaining the true nature of American Imperialism. He died of cancer in 1940.
Thanks. I’m familiar with Butler’s antiwar advocacy, and his exposure of an attempted coup, during the 1930s, but was ignorant of his relationship to the east coast oligarchy.
You are very welcome, Vot.
Was Grenada a clusterfuck? We really should have let the Soviets finish the 12,000 foot runway first.
I thought the Cuban garrison was utterly and completely defeated and removed from the island.
One Navy Huey what shot out of the air commencing a low lever frontal attack from the sea. Not very bright on the part of someone. I was glad I was the pilot that day. I cannot imagine a lone Huey approaching land coming in low over the water at a loud whop-whopping top speed of 125 kts and expecting to survive.
Anyway, I would love to know details about that operation. I heard some idiot in the fleet keyed a mic and alerted the Cubans to the presence of the American fleet, but heard nothing else.
Help Saker, how do I edit? I made corrections but somehow this version is posted. It was “low-level” and “I am glad I was NOT flying that day”.
Also, what happened to the long post where I pointed out that the last and only defensive war in which the US central government was called to defend the States was the War of 1812, 206 years ago, not 70. The ineptitude of the central government was demonstrated by Washington DC being overrun and sacked by the British. The only victories were in the Great Lakes and at New Orleans, both fought by volunteers. At New Orleans Andrew Jackson’s volunteers fought at their own expense, they brought their own food and shot their own powder and ball through their own squirrel guns. The cannon were left over from the War for Independence but were readily accessible, not locked away from the people in some government “armory”.
The only successful actions of the central government have been against the people of the several States beginning with shooting down farmers to suppress the Whiskey Rebellion. The farmers objected to the federal tax on whiskey. Whiskey was their one alternative to hauling tons of corn over a hundred miles of dirt road to market in the cities along the coast. As usual, in complete violation of the rule of law that people not be taxed in their necessities, the federals tax the livelihood of defenseless minorities.
To quote Gary North, “Thou shalt not steal except by majority vote.”
I do not think it was the Soviets who were building the driveway, it was Cubans (was it some 500 people?). Maybe it was for the Soviets, but not officially. As far as I know Cubans put a good fight.
Also you are missing the point. Grenada was not an US colony, it became after the “clusterf..ck”. Look at the mess it’s in today, just like Libya and other countries graced with gift of “Western Democracy”. The only difference is that it does not have an internal military conflict.
Thank you for this article.
OK Ron, but back when I was 18, I was 1A – certified cannon fodder – with no knowledge of actual history, law, logic, philosophy, or anything useful. I was a typical product of the government fool system, completely helpless to resist the “government” legally, physically, or morally. All the older men had valiantly fought in WWII and saved the world from Hitler and they all let me know it was my sacred duty to serve my country!
Now military “service” is not coerced.
Now it’s an all-volunteer military.
But it wasn’t always that way.
In my time, the military was as voluntary as the “voluntary” federal income tax.
I agree, the volunteer military is a successful deep state strategy coupled with the fiat economy of fiat currency. Nobody cares what happens to the uneducated children of the poor who can’t keep up in the amazingly dumbed-down government fool system of today. There are no more anti-war protests on college (elementary school level of the past) campus. The total ineptitude today’s graduates of the government fool system guarantees a supply of cannon fodder for the few, the proud, the Marines (and the other branches). The only hope these functional illiterates have for a “career” is to join the exalted job corps known as the Army (Navy, Air Force, Coast Guard), learn a useful trade, survive, separate or retire, and get free benefits and a shot at a real job. Even if you could only qualify for infantry, you can be a cop when you separate and live above the law. All you have to do is follow orders.
Left out in your list of “American wars” is Vietnam and Korea and the War of Northern Invasion, all of which involved government coercion – the draft – no choice to simply opt out of these banker’s war slaughters. You were either on your own shooting it out with an army of well armed and armored cops or you took your chances of surviving defenders shooting at you over the heads of their fellow countrymen rice farmers.
You used the figure of 70 years, but when has the US central government attempted to defend a State since the War of 1812, in which Washington DC was overrun and sacked by the British? When the British leisurely bombarded Fort McHenry while Francis Scott Key watched and took notes? The only victories in that War were fought by volunteers in the Great Lakes and at New Orleans by Andrew Jackson’s self-equipped civilian squirrel hunters and beaver trappers fighting on their own turf against a foreign invader, but that was 206 years ago, not 70 years ago.
Why didn’t you know, Robert did http://thesaker.is/thanking-vets-for-their-service-why/#comment-582242?
There’s always a choice and if you choose the one that involves harm to a true innocent you deserve to pay any price – including that of your life.
Before you try to kill someone you need to be damn sure it is for a good reason.
Thank you for accurately describing U.S. soldiers (those who weren’t drafted). They do enlist for pay and benefits, and they know or should know that by enlisting they are volunteering to go abroad to kill some innocents. Indeed they’re mercenaries.
I think Confucious would agree with you that naming things accurately is important. In fact, in Analects 13.3, he identifies the rectification of names as the most important work of a state, as the country won’t last if people’s thoughts are warped by the inaccuracy or deceptiveness of names for things.
As for why loud and fulsome gratitude for veterans is so common in the U.S., I think there’s a reason. In Americanese, expressing gratitude for military service is actually saying, “Thanks for doing a dirty, very dangerous job so I don’t have to do it.”
For those interested, check out this film by the BBC: https://www.theyshallnotgrowold.film/. I am in no way affiliated with this film by the way. I bring it to the attention of readers here because it so nicely dovetails with Saker’s piece. It graphically shows what war (in this case WWI) is really about and that soldiers are merely pawns and fodder in a larger cynical game. The interesting thing is that unlike today the poor bastards that returned after the end of the war were treated like pariahs. Many, as the film shows in their own words, felt let down and used. What many found out is that the Germans were no different than they were: Shopkeepers, bakers, craftsman etc. dragooned into a war they had no say in starting. Its really tragic in so many ways. For me it underlines that the nation-state is an incubator of war and that only an international solution as advocated by true socialists is the answer. I know many of you may pooh pooh that but humanity faces problems that are global in scope (resource depletion, climate change, unequal economic development and so on) that I cannot see being solved under the nation state system with its competing power blocs and rivalries. With every day that passes, more and more, the Geo-political situation is resembling the period before the outbreak of WWI. Except that should WWIII break out the destruction will be world ending.
You fail to make a distinction between “Americans” and the “American Government.” I have travelled throughout America. Americans are a good people. Their government, however, is evil and has been for a long time. That government, in turn, has been propped up by a corrupt media establishment and a vast non-media propaganda effort. For instance many universities have “Military Appreciation Days” funded by the so-called “Department of Defense.” It doesn’t stop there. While many people are unaware of this, the military has a larger budget for making films than any studio in Hollywood. If the American people had a responsible media telling the truth about our so-called “humanitarian interventions,” and if the propaganda were halted, the American people would rise up to stop this insanity. I have no doubt about that.
End the propaganda and you end the slaughter. It is as simple as that.
Cant have good people with bad government it just doesnt happen or if it does it just happens in a dictatorship.
And since the us americans live in a democracy their goverment is accountable to them. If for example they decide they absolutely dont care about what their govs is inflicting on the world (which would be shown by a large antiwar movement) despite being shown clearly that their goverment is capable of starting a war with no reason beside stealing of resources (iraq) and committing massacres on the native population to let their frustration out (iraq Afghanistan korea Vietnam)
Agree end the propaganda end the slaughter but the propaganda will never end unless yiu stop it.
You know what i find fascinating in a mildly disturbing way is the way the American (or the west in general) at least the ones admitting to themselves the horrors committed in their name with their tacit agreement is their screaming and shouting we have the media its brainwashing us its not us its them!
I have 2 answers :
1-do you known you have the power to stop a famine threatening to take the lives of 20 million people because of a land sea embargo you r enforcing, overnight
2-the people of cuba iran and china werent lazing around spewing about propaganda they were true patriots who made revolution build their countries in their image from the ground up. So untill the day the us americans have a revolution i will have to conclude that they r satisfied with what their giv does and it definently what their image is
America is not a democracy.
The two party system is sham and elections are a farce. The legal structure at the federal level and every state is set up to 1) insure the continuation of the two party system and 2) prevent real change within the parties.
For instance, when Bernie Sanders’s supporters challenged the rigging of the primaries, DNC attorneys argued (in open court no less) that political parties don’t have to operate in a democratic fashion. It was argued that the leaders of the party could run the system anyway that they wished. The judge agreed.
I was recently involved in a similar state based challenge.
As Mark Twain once said, “If voting made any difference, they wouldn’t allow it.”
All so true but it goes way back before the newcomer USA.
The “service” our legions render is an economic one–just like ancient Rome, just like every other group of sociopaths who got power. We take over other people’s turf for purely economic reasons: either to directly get their stuff, or to end their capacity as competitors for the planet’s stuff, or to set up favorable circumstances to get their or someone else’s stuff later on.
When our USA is either taken down or totters to its inevitable end, the group of sociopaths in the empire that takes its place (Asian perhaps) will be just the same. So maybe the “thank you” is because everyone is always on one side or the other of an empire.
The veterans of Korea and Viet Nam were largely drafted. They fought an imperial war but were not mercenaries. Rebellion among some of the US troops in Viet Nam helped to end that war. At least those veterans deserve respect.
Finally, the article is more than bit harsh on the veterans rather than the politicians and system that sent them to war.
I beg to differ with your comment that Americans don’t dislike war. The type A personalities control the dialogue. A foreigner could be excused for misinterpreting what he sees and reads. Just because we’re not the most peaceful group doesn’t mean we’re generally perverts.
I appreciated your essay. It reminded me I’m not the only one.
I’ve been saying this exact thing and posting it everywhere ad nauseam. It’s not endearing me to many people… I guess truth does hurt!
Nah i guess people dont like being told they arent God’s chosen people.
Ie will always be liked no matter what they do and all the other creations (even the other humans) are their plaything
In England my family had “Landrace” and “Large White” sows (female pigs) for breeding and subsequent slaughter. My mother says she cried when the slaughterhouse truck arrived for the first time, but that truck returned many times.
I was put in charge of the battery hens and I still cringe when thinking about it … it was wrong and still is wrong. I will spare you the details, but apart from the cruelty, what sort of egg (food) quality are people consuming into themselves … thoughtlessly … with all the blow-back.
The sows were sent out to a nearby farmer who had a boar (male pig) … they were sent there for a few days, to be “serviced” !
The reason for the ‘thanking’ is guilt. When the draft ended, the vast majority of people could breathe a sigh of relief and realize that, for the most part, only poor people would have to fight and die. That was the end of mass anti-war movements, and the reason why people feel compelled to thank soldiers ‘for their service’.
The civilizational reason why Americans support their empire’s global wars of aggression has to do with the very nature of American national identity.
In effect, the United States is not really a country but rather a religion.
This religion of Americanism is based on the idea that America is God’s Chosen.
The USA is a Shining City on a Hill that was selected by God to act as a beacon of liberty for all of humanity–whether they like it or not.
As the Land of the Free and Leader of the so-called Free World, the USA is thus a divinely-inspired nation.
Hence, by definition, America’s wars are “good wars”–or at least well-intentioned ones.
It’s crimes are not crimes but “terrible tragic mistakes.”
And the United States of America itself is the essence of (spiritual) goodness.
As a corollary, any nation, group, religion, or people that oppose America thus must by definition be Evil-Doers (who Hate our Freedoms).
This kind of messianic belief system is the basis of America identity–and incidentally bears a striking resemblance to Zionism, a similarly crazed belief system based on being God’s Chosen.
America Is a Religion – An Aggressive One
Americanism: The Fourth Great Western Religion
Or, as Harold Pinter stated in this 2005 Nobel Literature Prize speech:
“The crimes of the United States have been systematic, constant, vicious, remorseless, but very few people have actually talked about them. You have to hand it to America. It has exercised a quite clinical manipulation of power worldwide while masquerading as a force for universal good. It’s a brilliant, even witty, highly successful act of hypnosis.
I put to you that the United States is without doubt the greatest show on the road. Brutal, indifferent, scornful and ruthless it may be but it is also very clever. As a salesman it is out on its own and its most saleable commodity is self love. It’s a winner.”
One of the best quotes about Yankees that have ever heard.
Thanks so much for posting.
World War Won. ‘Won’ by the psychopaths who started it.
You seem to forget the draft which remained in effect after 1945 and was a prominent feature of the Vietnam war. I served courtesy of draft board prodding.
“Now Augustine of Hippo and Thomas Aquinas are hardly heroes of mine, but they are considered as very authoritative in western philosophical thought.”
It has always puzzled me that the scripture alone has a great deal to say on the subject two of which are:
Do not take revenge, my dear friends, but leave room for God’s wrath, for it is written: “It is mine to avenge; I will repay,” says the Lord. Romans 12:19
For we know him who said, “It is mine to avenge; I will repay,” and again, “The Lord will judge his people.” Hebrews 10:30
When I was a youngster it always bothered me history class especially that of the 20th Century and the numerous wars that were fought which pitted Christian nations against each other. Christians going to war against Christians and this included even members of the same denominations? It bothered me so much that I even asked a pastor of mine if we ever killed members of our own denomination after having sent our missionaries out to Christianize them? He blurted out with an incredulous look “‘well, I think something would have been done to prevent that from happening don’t you think.” I walked away disgusted!
There is a great deal to be said of Christ’s words:
Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works?
And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.
Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock:” Mathew 7:22
As for “leaving room for God’s wrath” go and read a book entitled Climate Change the Work of God by Gerry Fox and one will never be the same again. In the pages of that book one will quickly learn that what was described by a news reporter of the wind, thunder and accompanied hailstorm that struck Bravo Company when they were 25 miles from Baghdad was not a coincidence. In fact, what was described there was nothing less than a direct act by Almighty God upon a modern day military machine lol Here is a small sampling:
The Lord will cause people to hear his majestic voice
and will make them see his arm coming down
with raging anger and consuming fire,
with cloudburst, thunderstorm and hail. Isaiah 30:30
There is a scripture however, in Job that sums it up best:
Have you entered the storehouses of the snow or seen the storehouses of the hail, which I reserve for times of trouble, for days of war and battle? Job 38:23
Why, O why is there nothing written by any Church Father, Popes, Rabbi’s, etc etc of Divine Communication in relation to climate change? The ignorance is appalling!
and get this go and read about the terrible weather that struck the Roman Amphitheatre after the killings of the innocents by dogs like Nero. Just go and open your eyes to a truth that will shock and disgust you!
From the opening address by Chief American Prosecutor, Justice Robert H. Jackson, to the International Military Tribunal at the Nuremberg Trials (10 November 1945) https://en.wikiquote.org/wiki/Robert_H._Jackson
We must never forget that the record on which we judge these defendants is the record on which history will judge us tomorrow. To pass these defendants a poisoned chalice is to put it to our own lips as well.
If certain acts of violation of treaties are crimes, they are crimes whether the United States does them or whether Germany does them, and we are not prepared to lay down a rule of criminal conduct against others which we would not be willing to have invoked against us.
Ya got that right!
“Thanks”… I don’t think so…how about a HUGE… F U.
My thoughts turn to the North American natives, the Mexicans, Latin Americans, the Hawaiians, the Philippines, the Japanese… oh the list is long.
Really nothing has changed in 2000 years. ‘New Rome’ on the Potomac is just another ‘Death Cult Society” set up by the Uber psychopathic parasite EL-ites, who having been killing and destroying since Babylon. The same goes for the Orwellian “rallying cry” of the demonic State…nothing has changed in 2000 years.
The Psychos will use the so-called Humans of the ‘USofA’ to the very last drop of blood, and then collapse the system. The new ‘Headquarters” having been built and ready for occupancy.
The “self-destruct button” has been pushed and it is now only a matter of time.
For those who made the mistake, and decided to do something to correct it….
RIP Pat Tillman.
An earlier essay along the same lines, by Arthur Silber:
This article is a gem.
And so are the many eloquent and well informed comments.
I applaud The saker for being the ‘force to be reckoned with’ that he is.
I’m a retired US Army officer. My response to the “than you for your service”, is now much different that when I was in the army. I tell the person in a quiet and respectful voice, that I appreciate their heartfelt sentiments, but that I now deeply regret my time in the military and the actions I took against other people. I usually get a confused look and that is the end of the interaction. Sometimes I get lectured that what I dd was important and that our freedoms depended on them. Others thank me for my honesty. I came to this reply because I needed to respect myself and simply letting the “thank you for your service” comment made me feel guilty for those years of death and destruction. You might be surprised at how many veterans feel this way.
This is a very powerful article, perhaps one of the best I have read, anywhere.
Thanks so much.
RIGHT ON! A very good compilation of the crimes that soldiers in a war of aggression commit. However, I am an hon. disch. veteran of the air force and I did not enlist in order to “serve my country”.
Furthermore, I was fortunate to have “joined” when there was NO U.S. major war going on under JFK. So, one category of veterans would fall into the category of “GETTING IT OVERWITH. I certainly knew that I would get paid when I :served”, but that was not a motive for the time. Nor was it a motive for “avoiding the draft”. It was simply to “serve my time” and GET IT OVERWITH. So I think that this group of veterans would definitely appreciate some compassion and make sure to tell the “thanker”: Please don’t thank me for my “service”, but to “congradulate” you for SURVIVING THE TIME!
I know exactly what you mean. Every time I hear someone imply that National Socialist Germany was evil all I can think to say is, “why?”
It is still in the US military code that a soldier must refuse to obey an illegal order.
It is illegal for the President or a General to order the US military into action on American soil to enforce laws. This is a law known as Posse Comitatus which is a hold-over from ending the military occupation of the former Confederate states.
If a member of the military fails to uphold the military code and participates in illegal military operations, do we still have to Thank Them for their Service?
“Trump’s Military Deployment to the US-Mexico Border Is Illegal”, By Marjorie Cohn
For that matter, the US Constitution, the highest law in the land says that the legal wars only follow a Congressional Declaration of War. The writers of the Constitution were quite clear that they knew the history of tyrannical governments using the pretext of war to stomp out dissent. They clearly and obviously took the ability to declare war away from the President and the Generals.
Fantastic article. Well thought out and non-emotional. I am a recovering former “killer”, and I also write to advocate against our injust wars. Keep up the good fight!
Those who LIVE by the sword — die by the sword.
We are living by the sword when our business plan is just making swords.
If the only way we can survive economically is by arming murderous tyrants ………
Then WE are ACCESSORIES and ACCOMPLICES and we WILL die by that we live by.
One cannot serve evil without becoming evil. Anyone AND EVERYONE serving the ziononazi washington regime is serving the greatest evil of our time.
Thank you. I appreciate this analysis and judgment on this curious “fad” of TYFYS.
Anecdote: I was watching a parade of New Cadets (incoming freshmen) so, 18-19 yr olds, on the grounds of West Point, about a dozen yrs ago.
What stunned me was not the cadets. What stunned me, so much that I can still remember this long ago is this: three young women, teenage girls, who were shouting at those cadets: Thank You For Your Service.
I kid you not. Young people, who knew not what they were saying.
TYFYS–a new pick-up line?
War is born out of sin/evil. The elites (Kings of the Earth) have always used war as a means to control/slaughter the masses. Psycho-social warfare starts with people accepting the lie that war against a fictitious, created enemy is justified. 9/11 is the latest example.
Who created the idea in the public mind that war is somehow justified? Of course, its the very few families (the oligarchs) that own everything and everybody. These ultimately are the families that own the privately held stock in all but five of world Central Banks. Remember the creditor owns the borrower.
All reading this should be familiar with Nathan Rothschild’s quote that nothing like war was so profitable to his family. War is actually premeditated murder and will so be judged by the Creator. No one will escape judgement including me.