reply to post by mf_luder
You think this is bad? You should have seen what I had to put up with during Viet Nam. Every puke in the country spewed hate.
Young, old, men, women, everyone. I could be in uniform on the side of the road, and these folks would flip me off, swerve as if they were going to
run over me, throw things - you wouldn't believe.
When we got back I believe we flew into a processing center in Oakland. I think eight or nine packed into a cab to San Francisco International in
those wee hours. Late morning waiting on a flight, a girl and guy approached me and the girl said something and tried to spit at me, but it was just
a bit of spray.
Before I could think, the heel of my fist landed right on top of her head, and fortunately her boyfriend caught her as she went lights out. I
snatched him up and called him a chicken**** for using a girl to spit on soldiers and dared him to go ahead and spit. I was cold. I could have wrung
his neck and gone on to eat a full meal.
He didn't say a word, and I turned to the two airport security who were slowly approaching. I was pissed, and I assume I glared, as they just veered
off and went on by.
These folks that are posting these snippits know nothing. As we say down South, they "never had no proper upbringing." Their ignorance is so
blatantly skewered that there isn't even a mutual talking point. They don't have one!
For example. One of the most misleading things is a photograph. Aside from the technology that allows manipulation, a photograph is a point
perspective, taken in milliseconds, narrow in scope of view, without narrative, without time, conditons, or chronological perspective. Where a
photograph is placed, within any context, related or not, will dictate presumption, and leave open to any interpretation.
A photograph shows a bloody dead child on the ground with a soldier nearby, rifle in hand, looking down on it.
What does this mean? Why is the child bloody? Why is the solder standing there with a rifle in his hand? What is he looking at? Did the soldier
kill the child? Did the soldier discover the child? If the soldier hadn't been in the area, would the child still be alive? Did the soldier have
anything to do with the child's death, intentionally or unintentionally? Did the soldier kill the child by accident?
It could be that during a firefight between forces, a child ran across between the forces, and got caught in a crossfire. Accident. But then, which
side killed him?
It could be that the child ran in front of a car, was run over, and a nearby patrolling soldier was the only one caught from the angle the photograph
It could be that the guerillas were using women and children as shields and this unfortunate child was killed during the engagement.
It could be that a car ran into an IED which exploded, and the child was thrown clear.
It could be that the child's father, who had helped Americans, was ordered by villiage chiefs that either one son had to die, or his entire family.
The photo visually demonstrate a fact. One armed soldier, one dead, bloody child. At that moment from that angle. Yet there is no truth to be found
in this fact.
Truth? Sometimes there's more than one truth. If so, maybe there's no such thing.
Many journalists are too ignorant and egocentric to realize the real stories of combat. War is the ultimate human struggle. All history, all human
accomplishment, all endeavors of the human spirit, like it or not, were the direct or indirect result of wars.
The conclusion of wars defines nations and peoples. Wars burn into our souls those basis elements of humanity that we as a species universally value.
Men. War. The very act of war often purifies a rancid human condition. War is the ultimate in human sacrifice. The ultimate in human costs. War
enables. Mortal struggle elevates. Ideals. Honor. Duty. Sacrifice. Failings. Heroes. Legends. And that's just one view.
After this is over, the story will be told in many ways, by many people, from many perspectives, for many reasons. From these many tellings, we will
eventually and more closely determine the truth. Or at least a more accurate presentation of the truth. The event isn't the truth. Perception in
context is the only way to determine the truth.
None-participants will ever make judgments based on biased slivers of fact.
Those of us who've been there and done that - well, we can only hope that these same critics will find them in a situation that requires real action.