Monday, March 16, 2009

Oh, Good

I stole today's title from a story in This Modern World. It hits just the right note of wearied cynicism.

I've talked about this kind of thing before. But I just can't help it when I encounter these kinds of stories. They make my flesh crawl. First because I know them to be true. And second, even worse, I know that they are disbelieved by the vast majority of the American people because they think our military, "our boys," is composed of just a bunch of patriotic grown up Little Rascals. (What a rehabilitation these guys have gone through since the 1970s! At least they deserved their reputation then.) Seems like now that we've got "professionals," all-volunteer, ya know, we don't have blood lust in the ranks and we don't have murderers in the ranks.

Well, here are couple of cautionary tales, both via Sy Hersh, who's never taken his eye off the military ever since Mai Lai showed him what these armed to the teeth gatherings of "our boys" can do.

1. A super secret organization called JSOC. These are really special special operations forces. What these guys do is go all over the world and kill people our leader(s) deem worthy of killing. Here's a little taste:
They do not report to anybody, except in the Bush-Cheney days, they reported directly to the Cheney office. They did not report to the chairman of the joint chiefs of staff or to Mr. [Robert] Gates, the secretary of defense. They reported directly to him. … Congress has no oversight of it. It’s an executive assassination ring essentially, and it’s been going on and on and on. Just today in the Times there was a story that its leaders, a three star admiral named [William H.] McRaven, ordered a stop to it because there were so many collateral deaths. Under President Bush’s authority, they’ve been going into countries, not talking to the ambassador or the CIA station chief, and finding people on a list and executing them and leaving.
Here's the link. Doesn't it make you just quiver all over with patriotism to know that your tax dollars are being used for this? And that these killers are plying their trade in your name? God bless America!

2. We still kill innocent civilians among the people we're at war with. Yes, I know we kill a lot of them by accident. The ones I'm talking about here are on purpose. Another little tidbit:

. . . as he told the story, another platoon from his company came and executed all the guards, as his people were screaming, stop. And he said they just shot them one by one. He went nuts, and his soldiers went nuts. And he's hysterical. He's totally hysterical. And he went to the captain. He was a lieutenant, he went to the company captain. And the company captain said, "No, you don't understand. That's a kill. We got thirty-six insurgents.

Here's the link. Read some of the comments to this piece, and you'll see what I was talking about above.
Post a Comment