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Debates Forum

  1. Standard member sasquatch672
    Don't Like It Leave
    01 Jan '13 19:51
    I don't know that this OP is going to engender a great deal of discussion, but anyway...

    I miss the life. I do. I miss it alot. Money's fine, house, car...there's nothing like the brotherhood.

    To us and those like us. Damn few left.
  2. 01 Jan '13 20:04
    Originally posted by sasquatch672
    I don't know that this OP is going to engender a great deal of discussion, but anyway...

    I miss the life. I do. I miss it alot. Money's fine, house, car...there's nothing like the brotherhood.

    To us and those like us. Damn few left.
    Stand at ease Sgt.

    You put in your time. You ain't got nothing to be ashamed of.

    Service done and be proud.

    In my experience, doing various jobs it's all about friendship
    brotherhood and connections made. If you have made good
    connections, then that's all good.
  3. 01 Jan '13 21:02
    Originally posted by sasquatch672
    I don't know that this OP is going to engender a great deal of discussion, but anyway...

    I miss the life. I do. I miss it alot. Money's fine, house, car...there's nothing like the brotherhood.

    To us and those like us. Damn few left.
    Some of the best posts draw little comment but deserve much approval. Thank you for your service.
  4. Standard member sasquatch672
    Don't Like It Leave
    02 Jan '13 00:42
    Originally posted by JS357
    Some of the best posts draw little comment but deserve much approval. Thank you for your service.
    You're welcome, sincerely, and thank you for what you've done. There are a lot of ways to be a good American.
  5. Standard member sasquatch672
    Don't Like It Leave
    02 Jan '13 00:43
    Originally posted by johnnylongwoody
    Stand at ease Sgt.

    You put in your time. You ain't got nothing to be ashamed of.

    Service done and be proud.

    In my experience, doing various jobs it's all about friendship
    brotherhood and connections made. If you have made good
    connections, then that's all good.
    Thanks Johnny. I appreciate it. Best wishes for the coming year.
  6. Standard member bill718
    Enigma
    02 Jan '13 06:44
    Originally posted by sasquatch672
    I don't know that this OP is going to engender a great deal of discussion, but anyway...

    I miss the life. I do. I miss it alot. Money's fine, house, car...there's nothing like the brotherhood.

    To us and those like us. Damn few left.
    You could always join the Montana militia...
  7. 03 Jan '13 01:16
    Originally posted by sasquatch672
    I don't know that this OP is going to engender a great deal of discussion, but anyway...

    I miss the life. I do. I miss it alot. Money's fine, house, car...there's nothing like the brotherhood.

    To us and those like us. Damn few left.
    You could sing "Ich hatt' einen Kameraden" (or an American equivalent).

    Based on what veterans (in various military forces and various conflicts) have
    told me, of course, there's no one universal experience of military service.
    In a unit with strong cohesion and high esprit de corps, one can develop enduring
    bonds of comradeship that become almost as intimate as those in a marriage or
    a domestic partnership. Some veterans have requested that they be buried
    beside comrades who died long ago rather than beside their own family members.
    On the other hand, there are some units with corrupt or incompetent officers and
    a dominant culture of 'every man for himself', and I have known veterans who
    abhor being reminded in any way of their military experiences within those units.
    Many veterans of my acquaintance find it quite hard to speak of their experiences.
    (Indeed, I was surprised when an old friend of mine admitted that he once had
    unintentionally killed a child, whose family never forgave him for what happened.)
    After experiencing enough combat, some veterans have become pacifists.

    With regard to the US military in recent years, more women have been joining,
    which has resulted in the wider reporting of some (once taboo) problems.
    Evidently, there's a rather high incidence of sexual harassment or even sexual
    assault against women in the US military. For too many American women, their
    most painfully unforgettable experiences of US military life might be them being
    violated intimately by American men. Even though men and women might be
    wearing the same kind of uniform, the bonds of comradeship and respect don't
    always extend beyond some differences in gender (or race or religion).
  8. Standard member sasquatch672
    Don't Like It Leave
    03 Jan '13 03:16
    Originally posted by Duchess64
    You could sing "Ich hatt' einen Kameraden" (or an American equivalent).

    Based on what veterans (in various military forces and various conflicts) have
    told me, of course, there's no one universal experience of military service.
    In a unit with strong cohesion and high esprit de corps, one can develop enduring
    bonds of comradeship that become almost a ...[text shortened]... d respect don't
    always extend beyond some differences in gender (or race or religion).
    I didn't say the society was perfect. I'm well aware of the challenges my sisters-in-arms have faced and do face. they have earned my enduring respect. Nor did I claim that everyone's experience was positive. I myself have said more than once, "I'm glad I went in, and I'm glad I got out".

    What I am saying is that I've never again found bonds of that strength. Even with my wife, she abhors guns and does not understand my affection for my former profession. How could she? She never did it.

    By and large, you know what you're getting. You're getting a common set of beliefs, a common ethos, a reinforcing support system that nonetheless expects you to perform. Out here, it's every man for himself. It's different.

    I think one of the biggest things wrong with our society is that so little is expected of us. That should change. I do believe you should be required to contribute. Two years' compulsory service. Doesn't have to be military. AmeriCorps. Peace Corps. Something.
  9. 03 Jan '13 03:29 / 1 edit
    Originally posted by sasquatch672
    I didn't say the society was perfect. I'm well aware of the challenges my sisters-in-arms have faced and do face. they have earned my enduring respect. Nor did I claim that everyone's experience was positive. I myself have said more than once, "I'm glad I went in, and I'm glad I got out".

    What I am saying is that I've never again found bonds of sory service. Doesn't have to be military. AmeriCorps. Peace Corps. Something.
    I understand better than you seem to assume why you miss your military life.
    It's not on account of the potential danger or excitement, least of all on account
    of the opportunity to kill another human being. It's account of your friends,
    your comrades with whom you have shared some intense experiences with
    whom you never again will share with anyone else, including your wife.
    Indeed, after a war sometimes even some former enemies can form bonds of
    friendship after sharing their memories of about the same hellish experiences.

    By the way, how would you reconcile your proposed legal requirement for
    compulsory national service with a libertarian belief that the government should
    have no right to compel its citizens to perform labours against their will?
  10. Donation rwingett
    Ming the Merciless
    03 Jan '13 03:48
    Originally posted by sasquatch672
    I didn't say the society was perfect. I'm well aware of the challenges my sisters-in-arms have faced and do face. they have earned my enduring respect. Nor did I claim that everyone's experience was positive. I myself have said more than once, "I'm glad I went in, and I'm glad I got out".

    What I am saying is that I've never again found bonds of ...[text shortened]... sory service. Doesn't have to be military. AmeriCorps. Peace Corps. Something.
    What is the difference between that and the common set of beliefs, common ethos, and reinforcing support system of, say, the Waffen SS? Not to make light of your service, but I think those kind of bonds tend to be endemic of hierarchical, authoritarian groups, like the military (of any country). Groups which stress pluralism or egalitarianism, by definition, do not forge those type of bonds. It seems to me that the pursuit for that type of tight kinship necessarily pushes one toward a certain ideological disposition that embraces hierarchy, inequality, the idea of servitude, etc. Taken to its extreme, it becomes an implicit yearning for fascism.
  11. 03 Jan '13 03:59
    Originally posted by rwingett
    , the idea of servitude, etc. Taken to its extreme, it becomes an implicit yearning for fascism.
    Wut?

    I find that the opposite is true. There is no reason to have a police state with a moral civil society. None. However, an immoral society demands tyrrany.
  12. Standard member sasquatch672
    Don't Like It Leave
    03 Jan '13 04:04
    Originally posted by rwingett
    What is the difference between that and the common set of beliefs, common ethos, and reinforcing support system of, say, the Waffen SS? Not to make light of your service, but I think those kind of bonds tend to be endemic of hierarchical, authoritarian groups, like the military (of any country). Groups which stress pluralism or egalitarianism, by definition ...[text shortened]... , the idea of servitude, etc. Taken to its extreme, it becomes an implicit yearning for fascism.
    I admit that there's a hell of a lot of trust built into the system - a lot of trust in your superiors that they're ordering you to do the right thing. And more than one soldier has had their trust betrayed. But to be honest with you, the lack of ambiguity in your mission, the way you understand what you're supposed to be doing, being part of a team that has high cohesion, high morale, and high confidence it's those things. Probably every soldier believes that what they're doing is right; no one wants to regard themselves as evil. But it's not good vs. evil on a daily basis. In all honesty, it's about your brothers.
  13. 03 Jan '13 04:09
    Originally posted by sasquatch672
    I admit that there's a hell of a lot of trust built into the system - a lot of trust in your superiors that they're ordering you to do the right thing. And more than one soldier has had their trust betrayed. But to be honest with you, the lack of ambiguity in your mission, the way you understand what you're supposed to be doing, being part of a team t ...[text shortened]... But it's not good vs. evil on a daily basis. In all honesty, it's about your brothers.
    The way things are now I think it would be hard to know you are doing "good". I can understand defending your own country and home but to go out and tinker with regime change and nation rebuilding is a grotesque use of power. Then when ambassadors start being murdered and regimes turning into Isamic fundamentalist monsters for your trouble you start to question the sanity of it all.
  14. Donation rwingett
    Ming the Merciless
    03 Jan '13 11:40
    Originally posted by whodey
    Wut?

    I find that the opposite is true. There is no reason to have a police state with a moral civil society. None. However, an immoral society demands tyrrany.
    What you define as a "moral civil society" can only be achieved through some degree of tyranny. The tight bonds and common purpose that sasquatch describes do not spring up of their own accord. They are imposed by authoritarian figures in hierarchical groupings. A free and pluralistic society will tend toward looser social cohesion, or what you would call "an immoral society." Needless to say, though, I disagree with your usage of "moral" and "immoral."
  15. Donation rwingett
    Ming the Merciless
    03 Jan '13 13:02
    It used to be the church hierarchies which imposed a common bond and purpose upon society. With the lessening of church influence in modern society, that yearning for a paternal, authoritarian father figure has been replaced to some extent by the various military units across the world. They have replaced the church in providing its members with a "purpose", "identity" and sense of belonging.