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Brandon Toy, an Iraq War veteran and a mid-level project manager at General Dynamics, concluded that what he had done and was doing went against the best principles of the United States – and so resigned with a declaration that if “every foot soldier threw down his rifle,” things might change, Dennis J Bernstein reports.
By Dennis J. Bernstein
Brandon Toy, who has just resigned from his position as an engineering project manager at the military contractor General Dynamics, released a letter of resignation that a lot of people are looking at. It says in part:
“I have served the post 9/11 military industrial complex for ten years, first as a soldier in Baghdad, and now as a defense contractor. I’ve always believed that if every foot soldier threw down his rifle, war would end. I hereby now, throw mine down.
At the time of my enlistment I believed in the cause. I was ignorant, naive, and misled.
The narrative professed by the state and echoed by the mainstream press has proven false and criminal. We have become what I thought we were fighting against.
Recent revelations by fearless journalists of war crimes, including counter-insurgency, dirty wars, drone terrorism, suspension of due process, torture, mass surveillance and widespread regulatory capture have shed light on the true nature of the current U.S. government. …”
I think that started seeing images of soldiers and war, glorified veterans held up as heroes, flag waving, etc., etc. It just got the idea in my head that that was about the highest thing that you could do for your country, was to serve in the armed forces. And then it just snowballed from there.
After 9/11, I became, I guess you would say, a rabid patriot and I was all for the Iraq war. I have to confess that I voted for President Bush twice. I enlisted at the end of 2003 after Iraq had started. I believed in the cause. I thought we were going over there to find WMDs and fight terrorism on its own soil, etc., etc, oust Hussein from power and bring democracy to the Middle East which now seems like a ludicrous concept to me.
But I actually believed that stuff. So I got sucked in very deeply, very quickly. And even though I didn’t enlist when I was 18 – I was 24 – I still see myself as very young and naive, at that time.
We weren't on the ground when those planes hit, however, so, symbolic throwing down of rifles is likely pointless where fanatics will seek out and find any excuse or no excuse at all to kill any and every American, Western nation citizen, and/or any and everyone else not in their fanatic club house they can get at.
The entire world is beginning to rebel against the Obama regime... I bet sooner or later his house of cards will fall on top of him and his co conspirators in crime..
Originally posted by TDawgRex
If we were to stop fighting Radicals, then that would be tantamount to surrender, because I guarantee you that they would keep it up.
Yes, if EVERYONE, on both sides, would 'throw down their arms' the war would end - but pick them up again and protect the citizenry as we rise up and protest, throw out, arrest and prosecute the brutes who are doing this, destroying SO MANY LIVES, while they watch "Kill TV" in safe offices in the Pentagon.
Originally posted by wildtimes
Congress is, in many ways, unaware of what is going on - the black ops and dirty wars (here's the link again to Jeremy Scahill's book and movie info: Dirty Wars: The World as a Battlefield) which Obama has not only RAMPED UP from the Bush administration, but also LIED about when campaigning, is happening behind closed doors, and WITHOUT Congressional oversight.
It gets plenty of Congressional oversight. Congress probably conducts more covert action oversight now than at any point in history (and certainly any point before Hughes-Ryan). But Congress has elections to win, and they are not required to conduct all oversight in public, so they don't talk about it.
This man, who I STOOPIDLY believed would offer "hope and change" is a scoundrel first-class. He really SHOULD BE IMPEACHED for his 'signature drone strikes' - which, for every 'terrorist' or 'potential terrorist' they kill, also ends the lives of anywhere from a handful to dozens of civilians. It is TERRORISM, and it is WRONG. It goes against all international 'laws', and makes me utterly sick, :bash:
Collateral damage is permissible under international humanitarian law, provided it is proportional to the "concrete and direct military advantage" obtained (Customary IHL Rule 14). You may not like the fact that collateral damage occurs--at a much lower rate than past conflicts, I might add--but unless you have specific knowledge of the military advantages obtained by these strikes, it's presumptuous to call them illegal.
Yep! This is what they do, take naive, enthusiastic young men and women who want to "go help", and turn them into homicidal killing machines.
Patronizing rubbish. He was twenty-four. He was older than some of his NCOs and officers. And he continued being "naive" for what, ten years?
I hope more soldiers will come out and 'quit' - just 'desert' - they can't put ALL SOLDIERS in Gitmo.
Other than the billets assigned to whatever Army units are stationed there, they can't put any soldiers in Gitmo.
The troops on the ground - ESPECIALLY the Joint Special Operations Command forces are killers - are rabid beasts ordered about by morally corrupted, evil, scheming monsters -
With very few exceptions, servicemembers are trained killers. That's their job. JSOC operators are the best. They are also the most careful, patient, and discriminating killers in the US Armed Forces, and perhaps the world. You might not like what they do, but there's nothing "rabid" in the way they go about it.
In Dirty Wars: The World Is a Battlefield, Jeremy Scahill, author of the New York Times bestseller Blackwater: The World's Most Powerful Mercenary Army, takes us inside America’s new covert wars. The foot soldiers in these battles operate globally and inside the United States with orders from the White House to do whatever is necessary to hunt down, capture, or kill individuals designated by the president as enemies.
Drawn from the ranks of the Navy SEALs, Delta Force, former Blackwater and other private security contractors, the CIA’s Special Activities Division, and the Joint Special Operations Command (JSOC), these elite soldiers operate worldwide, with thousands of secret commandos working in more than one hundred countries. Funded through “black budgets,” Special Operations Forces conduct missions in denied areas, engage in targeted killings, snatch and grab individuals, and direct drone, AC-130, and cruise missile strikes. While the Bush administration deployed these ghost militias, President Barack Obama has expanded their operations and given them new scope and legitimacy.
Dirty Wars follows the consequences of the declaration that “the world is a battlefield,” as Scahill uncovers the most important foreign policy story of our time. From Afghanistan to Yemen, Somalia, and beyond, Scahill reports from the frontlines in this high-stakes investigation and explores the depths of America’s global killing machine. He goes beneath the surface of America’s covert wars, conducted in the shadows, outside the range of the press, without effective congressional oversight or public debate.
And, based on unprecedented access, Scahill tells the chilling story of an American citizen marked for assassination by his own government.
Originally posted by watchitburn
I think the upswing in PTSD and suicides is due mostly to people who have no business being in the military signing up for all the wrong reasons. Whether it is for a steady job, college tuition or a misguided sense of patriotic duty. Either way, I have noticed a decline in the quality of personnel in the Armed forces.
I think most likely it is a combination of several factors.
1. Society as a whole is producing weaker people; mentally, socially and physically.
2. The increase in the size of military over the past 10+ years and the lowering of standards.
3. The economy driving people into the service who otherwise would have chosen another occupation.