War Has Never Been Humane, Or Glorious…
Some people are not fans of the jury’s decision to find Eddie Gallagher not guilty of murder and war crimes…that’s fine. Many of them claim the “pristine” nature of service and military has been tarnished due to this decision. Some say that “This isn’t how we win wars.” They talk about the excellence of yesteryear and how we were such good warfighters “way back when”. It’s a nostalgic fantasy, it was never like that. War was always horrible.
War was never good. Wars were fought for just reasons, escape from tyranny, the freedom of man, the threat of a genocidal dictator, Communism…there are justified instances of war, but no war has ever been good. Nobody will say it because we’re too wrapped up in our back to back World War championships to give a flying shit, but the truth is in World War 2, we slayed (yes we did this wrong on purpose, we know it’s supposed to be slew) the hell out of prisoners because they kept saying “we surrender” or some shit and then attacking us after we lowered our guard.
Any illusions you have about war being this fun, super focused, clear battlespace are childish. That’s not saying we should go full-on “rape pillage and murder” but in some of these higher-profile cases, our minds are focused on the memories we have of war that Hollywood has told us about, where the good guy doesn’t pay the price for being a Captain America, where the good guys and bad guys are clearly defined.
Do we have all of the right answers? No. Were we around for the events that unfolded around Eddie Gallagher and Mathew Golsteyn? No. But we know this. War isn’t what you see on TV and it’s not what gets reported on the news.
As always we’d like to remind people of the saying,
“America isn’t at war, America is at the mall. The Marine Corps is at war.”
And while the quote singles out the Marine Corps, we know the truth of it is that the entirety of the U.S. military is at war. Everyone else, man, we’re just sitting on our front porch drinking beers.
Know what we're sayin fam?
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