Military opinions and war experience

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posted on Jun, 30 2005 @ 07:41 PM
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Just started in on this thread, but Im must say a good debate is going on here. The question of war is long running and painfull one. I have been in the army for eight years and this war is my first and last. My unit is working in Iraq to buid roads and what not. We havent seen much action, thankfully, and it has made many here forget the human cost for this whole thing. I havent been faced with death nor seen the worse of it but understand the real value of my life and anyone elses. I have a two year old son at home that means more than any of this war stuff. When I see Iraqi kids living on nothing bearfoot and dirty Im sure thankfull my son has what he needs. The idea that one has a hard time supporting the war if they have seen the effects of war is somewhat true, I think, but many other things can be good reason to not support war. I serve in the army to support my local area and to give back what Ive been given. I would hope those running the show value my life as I value my sons. That doesnt seem to be the case here. Every time we here about a 18 or 19 year old killed here we all cry inside, and sometimes on the outside too. Its hard to think a young kid gave up all the joys of growing up to support this war. Each day isnt much different than the rest and over time we can see a small gain in our work but nothing worth the life of one kid. This war has changed me but not for the worse. I have found hope and a reason to enjoy daily life more. The simple things are important too, it doesnt take much to be ok, Im finding. When we get home my time is up and I wish to walk away for the army with much gained but most of all an understanding that war isnt something to throw around, its a big deal and the public is starting to see that too, I hope.




posted on Jun, 30 2005 @ 07:52 PM
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Thanks for joining us, Dirk d. I'm glad to know more about your experience and views.


It's great to know that you, so far, have not experienced the horrific side of war. Let's hope you and those you serve with, are able to make it home, without seeing or experiencing any of that.


How much longer do you have left (in country)?

What you wrote hit me hard. After seeing my excellent experience in the Army, my younger brother joined the SC National Guard to help suppliment his income. That was in 2000. He's a better soldier than I ever was. Many in his unit have gone to Iraq; thankfully, so far he has been spared that tour. He has a wife, a 2yr old girl and a newborn baby girl. The thought of him having to go over there really gets me twisted up. I know it would be his duty, and he's fully ready for that, but God... I can't stand the thought of something happening to him. If I could I'd go in his place, I would, as I am single.

Stay safe, Dirk. And don't be a stranger.


[edit on 6/30/05 by EastCoastKid]



posted on Jun, 30 2005 @ 08:18 PM
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EastCoastKid:

Thanks for the concern, I sure understand your worries. I would want to do the same if I was you.
I cant help but think Ive been turning into a poor soilder slowly being here. Im in Wyoming Guard after four years in 1st Cav. I have found less reasons to stay in now. I sure repect the the guys running the roads and putting life and limb on the line every day. I will never reach their level of self will. I dont think I have it in me now that I have a son to risk it all, day by day. I would rather do it than some of these poor young boys but Im not the killer I onces was.
We are about half way done now. The plan is never clear, Im sure you understand how that goes. Thanks again for the thoughts.



posted on Jun, 30 2005 @ 08:27 PM
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Originally posted by dirk d
I cant help but think Ive been turning into a poor soilder slowly being here.


You can't let yourself think that way. You are doing fine. Just remember, no one walks away from war the same as they came. If you disagree with it, there is nothing wrong with that; especially considering the fact that you volunteered, and YOU are there. Just stay alert and get home safe for your loved ones. And remember, you will always be their hero.


Im in Wyoming Guard after four years in 1st Cav. I have found less reasons to stay in now. I sure repect the the guys running the roads and putting life and limb on the line every day. I will never reach their level of self will.


Hoowah. Go 'Cav. You have it in you. Don't ever sell yourself short.

I pray for your kid that you will be safely home with him soon.

[edit on 6/30/05 by EastCoastKid]



posted on Jun, 30 2005 @ 09:05 PM
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Well, I am a Vietnam-era veteran, although I was never in Vietnam. Since I have not experience shooting any other guys, according to Kidfinger, I am a hypocrite if I were an unthinking supporter of the war (which I'm not).

Of course, following Kidfinger's logic, anyone without any battlefield experience who has any opinion on the war -- pro or con -- is also a hypocrite, since their values are -- like mine -- irrelevant.

Interestingly enough, Kidfinger never mentions this.

Not only that, but Kidfinger, in his first post, seems to slam anyone who is not a battlefield veteran who is in favor of President Bush's international policies as well.

The way I read Kidfinger's post is that he's saying -- in effect:

If you support the war and didn't serve in country, you are a hypocrite and don't know what you're talking about.

If, like me, you do not support the war and didn't serve in country, you're okay -- not because of your experience or lack thereof, but because you agree with me.

If you support Bush's international policies and didn't serve in country, you are a hypocrite and don't know what you're talking about.

If, like me, you do not support Bush's international policies and didn't serve in country, you're okay -- not because of your experience or lack thereof, but because you agree with me.

That's complete and utter rubbish.

Saying that a person who disagrees with Kidfinger is a hypocrite because of lack of battlefield experience is like me saying that a person who disagrees with me on social security is a hypocrite because at seventeen, he's never paid any taxes into the system.

Here's some news for you, Kidfinger:

My beliefs are as valid as yours. I do not need to have seen dead Iraqis to be as cognizant as you are of geopolitics. I do not need to have worn a Kevlar instead of a steel pot to understand what life is like. I do not need to have been shipped to Kuwait to have any sort of magical insights about what's right and wrong with Dubya's policies.

If you want to pull this elitist "My views are more valid than yours are because I saw dead guys" crapola...

I suggest you try it with someone else.



posted on Jun, 30 2005 @ 09:13 PM
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Off_the_Street,

I've been on this thread since the day it was started. I assure you, no one, and I'm speaking for Kidfinger here, is saying that. This thread is merely to explore military and war experiences. Your thoughts are just as welcome as the most battle-hardened vet.



posted on Jul, 1 2005 @ 08:10 AM
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Originally posted by Off_The_Street

Here's some news for you, Kidfinger:

My beliefs are as valid as yours. I do not need to have seen dead Iraqis to be as cognizant as you are of geopolitics. I do not need to have worn a Kevlar instead of a steel pot to understand what life is like. I do not need to have been shipped to Kuwait to have any sort of magical insights about what's right and wrong with Dubya's policies.

If you want to pull this elitist "My views are more valid than yours are because I saw dead guys" crapola...

I suggest you try it with someone else.




I was going to respond in a way that would not do this thread justice, so I will just say this. You are misreading the intentions of this thread and your lack of willingness to accept that this is a good and valid thread is fogging your ability to percieve a true quest for knowledge and understanding of this war as well as other matters which have been discussed here.

I never said nor have I implied that your opinion is any less warranted or as pertinant as mine. OTS, your ego is getting the better of you and its not pretty.



posted on Jul, 1 2005 @ 08:30 AM
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Off_the_Street,

Where did you serve? What branch?



posted on Jul, 6 2005 @ 12:00 PM
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I quote:

Kidfinger: ”So why is it that I and many others like me here at ATS are against this war and Bush’s international policies, yet the members of ATS who have served and not seen one day of war support this with a ‘patriotic fervor’?”

Cargo: ” But here we have Kidfinger and EastcoastKid, both Gulf War 1 Vets who are vehemently opposed to the current war in Iraq. This fascinates me. And this makes their opinion even more valid. They've been there and done it. Everyone else here is just posturing.”

Kidfinger: ” …Cargo, Im sure I can speak for ECK as well as myself … within the invisible hypocracy that the uninitiated servicemen/women are adhearing to for the most part on this baord.”

That sounds pretty biased to me.

Kidfinger: ” I would also like to ad to this that maybe some of the people who have claimed to have military service are just claiming this in order to lend some kind of credence to thier opinions. A possiblity. ATS offers an anomonimity for such claims.”

Exactly. Anyone posting on this board, whether identifying themselves as Vietnam-era vets who saw combat (like Grady) or didn’t (like me) or later vets who may or may not have seen combat – well, all you have to go on is what they say.

And for what it's worth, I was an IC/3 on a diesel-electric Fleet-class sub, being in the Navy from 1961 (my 17th birthday) as a reservist, going active in 1963, and spent two years on active duty out of COMSUBLANT. before getting out in 1965 and starting college.

But for all you know, I may have never been in the service at all; after all, this is the Internet.

Either way, in the words of Kidfinger, I must be exhibiting that " ... invisible hypocracy [sic] that the uninitiated servicemen/women ..." seem to have.



posted on Jul, 6 2005 @ 12:39 PM
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Originally posted by Off_The_Street
I quote:

Cargo: ” But here we have Kidfinger and EastcoastKid, both Gulf War 1 Vets who are vehemently opposed to the current war in Iraq. This fascinates me. And this makes their opinion even more valid. They've been there and done it. Everyone else here is just posturing.”



Read this off_the_street.

written by Cargo:
Its one thing to be pulling guard duty in Germany and another to be in an active combat zone during war, where people are dying around you.

Im glad you gave a**kickings to the cry-babies in peacetime Germany. What a bunch of pansies.


Cargo is taking a cheap shot at my 4 years in the US Army, he NEVER served in uniform a day in his life, but that does not stop him from running his big mouth and attacking my service in the Army. I have a simple opinion regarding civilians who have never served in the military: Read this carefully Cargo, you little weasel.

1) If you NEVER served, Don't disrespect those who did, weather they drove an Apache or peeled potatoes...its more than you ever did! I never bagged on other service members....NEVER! Even tho Navy ships are like floating Hotels and the Air Force is like a cushy country-club...I still refrained from bad-mouthing them because at least they sacraficed a few years of their life for America.

2) battle hardened veterans opinions on war itself, carry more weight than any of our opinions do. They should be listened to, but only to a point. In the end we all make up our own minds.


Maximu§



posted on Jul, 6 2005 @ 03:05 PM
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Originally posted by LA_Maximus
1) If you NEVER served, Don't disrespect those who did, weather they drove an Apache or peeled potatoes...its more than you ever did! I never bagged on other service members....NEVER! Even tho Navy ships are like floating Hotels and the Air Force is like a cushy country-club...I still refrained from bad-mouthing them because at least they sacraficed a few years of their life for America.


Did you not just do that there though?

Also like the second point, for once I agree with you on something. :|



posted on Jul, 6 2005 @ 03:10 PM
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You dont serve me Maximus. And I have never had respect for you. As for having never served, I don't live in America. If my country needs me to repel an invasion, I will be first in line for BDUs and a Steyr.

Then:


Originally posted by LA_Maximus
I don't think a combat vet's opinion is as important as mine, cause growing up at 6th and Union in downtown Los Angeles gave me 11 years of combat experiance. Ive seen death up close...I won't go into all my horror stories, but Ill ask y'all to trust me that Im telling the truth.


Now:


Originally posted by LA_Maximus
battle hardened veterans opinions on war itself, carry more weight than any of our opinions do. They should be listened to, but only to a point. In the end we all make up our own minds.




When it comes to actual war, I will take the views of any combat vet over anyone else. They have walked it. And regardless of whether they think the war is justified or not, I will listen to them because they have lived it. I have spoken to many combat vets in my years, and it seriously affects they outlook on life and war unmistakably, one way or another.

It's all very sad.


[edit on 6-7-2005 by cargo]



posted on Jul, 6 2005 @ 03:21 PM
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Originally posted by Odium

Originally posted by LA_Maximus
1) If you NEVER served, Don't disrespect those who did, weather they drove an Apache or peeled potatoes...its more than you ever did! I never bagged on other service members....NEVER! Even tho Navy ships are like floating Hotels and the Air Force is like a cushy country-club...I still refrained from bad-mouthing them because at least they sacraficed a few years of their life for America.


Did you not just do that there though?

Also like the second point, for once I agree with you on something. :|




I think you'll find people in the military always poke fun at one another, but its different when it comes from a civilian who never served.

My beloved Army is viewed by the Air Force and Navy as a buncha Grunts who are not too bright, but we view the Navy as softies in floating hotels with 1st class food and hot looking female bunkmates and the Air Force as a 'country-club" with lax duty with a golf game at the end of the day.

Im sure Im wrong about the Navy and AF, but rivalries always exist between the services and we love to bag on one another......Im sure this old tanker could NEVER handle being on a small Frigate in the North Atlantic or baby-sitting a Patriot Battery in Saudi Arabia in 120F.


Maqximu§

PS: Im told you what I have to tell you Cargo, just pray to God you never meet me in in person.

[edit on 033131p://333 by LA_Maximus]



posted on Jul, 6 2005 @ 03:24 PM
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2) battle hardened veterans opinions on war itself, carry more weight than any of our opinions do. They should be listened to, but only to a point. In the end we all make up our own minds.

True....but only for certain things ,like, Leasons Learned (every unit should do this, IMO), teaching the do's and the do not's....etc...etc....

Combat expierence does NOT make someone more politically enlightened...and does make thier opinion on Bush and or OIF, OEF or any other war more valuable. BOTTOM LINE!!!!

I was in OEF/PI when it first kicked off....many of my buddies that were there with me in addition to that did multiple deployments in Iraq...2 sometimes 3 or 4. And 90% of them do not oppose the war.

Combat expierence and politics are two different things......
Apples and Grapes.

sporty



posted on Jul, 6 2005 @ 03:34 PM
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Don't threaten me, Maximus. If you wish to do me harm because of words I have spoken, then you need to check your ego. I would never wish to harm you.

Why do you so badly want me to respect you? I'm a foreign national, what is it exactly that you have done for me?


[edit on 6-7-2005 by cargo]



posted on Jul, 6 2005 @ 03:57 PM
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No, I don't want your respect, I just want to you to shut your pie-hole about my military service......Thats all. Calling my 2 years on the German border "guard duty" is a total insult.

If you have not done ANY military service, than keep your big mouth shut about others in ATS who have served.

Maximu§



posted on Jul, 6 2005 @ 06:39 PM
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Question to members who are in the military sections, which of you have gone to Iraq recently for Duty.

What kind of situations have you been put in.

Another thing which part of the country were you deployed.



posted on Jul, 6 2005 @ 10:23 PM
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Originally posted by Off_The_Street
I quote:

Kidfinger: ”So why is it that I and many others like me here at ATS are against this war and Bush’s international policies, yet the members of ATS who have served and not seen one day of war support this with a ‘patriotic fervor’?”



Your underrated hostility toward this thread is duly noted. You are only the second person to arrive here and get like that.

Congratulations. What a strange and unwanted title to carry.



posted on Jul, 6 2005 @ 10:28 PM
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Originally posted by LA_Maximus
No, I don't want your respect, I just want to you to shut your pie-hole about my military service......Thats all. Calling my 2 years on the German border "guard duty" is a total insult.

If you have not done ANY military service, than keep your big mouth shut about others in ATS who have served.

Maximu§


Sorry bud, compared to a real live "live fire" war, your German border guard duty is just that.



posted on Jul, 6 2005 @ 10:34 PM
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Originally posted by Interseptor
Question to members who are in the military sections, which of you have gone to Iraq recently for Duty.

What kind of situations have you been put in.

Another thing which part of the country were you deployed.


I havn't been there recently. I served with the 101st Airborne Division during the Persian Gulf War. I've studied our nation's mid-eastern policy and the area's history going back about 130 years.

I've been in life threatening situations while in the Army. As were many people.

[edit on 7/6/05 by EastCoastKid]





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