War – The ULTIMATE Team-Building Exercise
December 8, 2009 3 Comments
Once again I am writing to document an associate’s response to something that I apparently think is blatantly obvious but just flies in the face of all that is decent. Something that to have such an opinion as mine would apparently, in olden times, have me branded a heretic and burned at the stake while being pelted with feces and boiled cats.
-Or something like that.
The view that I expressed is that America, as a nation, requires one thing and one thing only to put itself back on track and allow it to shed the petty and useless bullshit that seems to clutter many societies that are at “peace” with those around them. Yep, I am talking about WAR, and all of the definitions that come from participating in one. Now by war I am not talking about some mild skirmishes off in the middle of Timbuktu, I mean an all-out united front “us verses THEM” kinda involvement. Something along the lines of a World War II scenario here, with our entire economy having to be bent to allow us to defend our freedoms, not the detached from the immediate public one that we are fighting now. In all honesty no offense to what we have accomplished to date in the MidEast theater, but I feel that it does not impact the American public anywhere near as powerfully as one of the BIG ones.
This colleague of mine was aghast that I could even for a moment believe that the inherent loss of life involved with such a conflict could be fathomable, let alone acceptable, but he held off from raking me over whatever the hell type of coals he was attempting to scrape up and allowed me to state my points, and in fact listened to the benefits that I believe all societies gain from having a well-defined enemy to work against.
1. The elimination of / decline of pointlessness: When taking a stance on a particular topic results in little to no repercussions, it becomes an easy thing to champion said cause. That shit fades back into the dumpster when having a specific set of ideals could cause you to be shot / interred in a concentration camp / used as a primer on torture / etc. Bush lied / people died? Gone to the wayside as the afore-mentioned enemy has a proven track record of killing those you know or love, and will continually do so if outside of a war scenario. Code Pink? -Laughed out of society as soon as their pink-clad antics degenerate into a thoughtless form of highlighting…. well, whatever the hell that they are protesting. “I support the Troops, not the Military”? -SLAMMING into place would be the sudden thought that, holy shit, the troops ARE the military!
2. The promotion of patriotism: This is one of the big ones. I, to date, have never met a group of people that sneer at the country of their birth as much as Americans do. From my travels I think that I might have identified the issue though; being that too many of the people (the civilians) that I have come across have never had to experience true conflict, and have never had everything they know and love potentially be forcibly taken from them. They have been insulated for far too long and left to their own devices, secure in the knowledge that “…it could never happen to me! Iraq could be on the face of the moon as far as I know.” Smack these people around with some real truths, i.e. life or death, freedom or slavery, and they tend to fall in line behind the one thing that can defend them, even if it was fear that drove them in that direction.
3. The creation of true Heros: Save a cat, make the news, fade into woodwork. Save a group of soldiers while defending from a group of hostiles (and don’t forget to add the appropriate insurmountable odds) and you have yourself a true hero, and one that performed said act not only for his group, but for the NATION. Seriously, this is a person that I can get behind, and not some pussy that created some new program that sorts mail more efficiently or made employee of the week.
4. Being exposed to ACTUAL truths about humanity, to include the nasty hairy underbelly, and changing because of it: War has this amazing byproduct, which I like to call ” having to make a life-changing decision on the fly”. That guy over there shooting at you? Well you can approach this scenario from two different angles. First one is trying to get into the mind of the enemy, figuring out what drives him to commit such atrocities, find out what his driving force is. You could even begin to sympathize with him, knowing that he is just participating in the same mindless struggle that you are and that if you just had a chance to have an open dialogue then all would be well and you would begin shitting rainbows.
-Or you could shoot the fuck out of him as he is shooting at you for the same purpose and move the fuck on, now having changed your outlook on the whole process. This action may directly conflict with your previous internal mental proclivities, but you can deal with that later. You are alive, he is dead, end of story.
5. The creation of a warrior culture: When you have so many of your people trained in the art of combat, it tends to change the national mentality about it. I don’t know about many of you out there but I can’t swing a stick without hitting a veteran of at least one war, with the bulk of them being iraqi or afghani veterans. These fine people that have actually had to stare live conflict in the face and tell it to go get fucked have, no matter what their walk of life, been changed. Yeah, they may drink a bit more or have a haunted look in their eyes when / if they tell stories of what they have seen, but you would too if your entire life view has been slammed face first into the concrete that is actual life and death struggle. Someone (Code Pink reference again) may scream that we are sending our sons and daughters out to fight our wars, think of the CHILDREN!!!!!!, but when I was out there I met some of the greatest people that I would meet in my life. Yeah, there may be a 19 year old on that 50 cal directing traffic, but he is a really good shot and knows his shit. These are the people that are going to run our country here in a few years, and what better then to have warriors in places of authority than have… well, hippies. I know what my choice is going to be.
There are a crapload more reasons that I could get into on this, but these are the primary ones that I was able to get across prior to the guy that was listening to me just about holding up a sign that said “tilt” and passing out from internal conflict errors.
Gotta love them.
-But on to the finale.
Yeah, there are losses in war, as there are looses in any process that one can undertake, but to me the benefits just completely outweigh the disadvantages when it comes to the actual societal influences. Complacency is the death bell for any great group of people, and the simplest way to avoid that is to have a nice little black-and-white conflict where there is a complete absence of grey and a well-defined enemy force. I am not saying that Orwell had it right, and I am not talking about ANYTHING to the scale of 1984, but having a well-defined enemy gives you something to FOCUS on, and not be distracted by trite shit like the mating habits of the 6 tailed wombat or preserving the “rights” of illegal aliens.
Sorry guys, this one just kind of gets under my rhinoceros-thick skin.
-And NO, I am NOT a fan of Nietzsche. Well not ALL of it…