Tuesday, March 13, 2007


Thomas Sowell makes an excellent point this morning about the way the leftist media "support the troops":
The front cover of Newsweek's March 5th issue featured a woman with amputated legs and a sweatshirt that said "ARMY" across the front. Inside, there were pages and pages of other pictures of badly wounded and disfigured military veterans, in a long article that began under the big headline: "Forgotten Heroes."

The utter hypocrisy of all this can be seen in the word "heroes." There have been many acts of heroism among our troops in Iraq -- but those heroes didn't make the front cover of Newsweek.

One man fell on a grenade to protect his buddies, smothering the fatal blast with his body, so that those around him might live when he died. But that never made the front cover of Newsweek. It was barely mentioned anywhere in the liberal media.

They are not interested in heroes. They are interested in depicting victims -- in the military as in civilian society...

After generations of dumbed-down education in our schools, perhaps it is inevitable that there would be large numbers of people who have no way of separating rhetoric from reality.

The reality is that many of those in the media and in politics who are constantly talking about "supporting our troops" or "honoring our troops" have for years been in the forefront of those criticizing or undermining the military, long before the Iraq war.

Ah...victimhood. Now this is a meme the MSM can really get behind! Particularly when they aren't recycling the one about the US military being murderous, raping oppressors.

Almost all of the rhetoric against the Iraq war has focused dramatically on the toll it has taken on our military. This is seen in the daily death counts; the portentous talking heads seriously intoning about the latest explosions and such. How horrible and tragic it all is.

But as Sowell notes, parading casualties in front of the public is not the same thing as "honoring our troops." Honoring them means that we talk about the good things they have done; their achievements. But on those realities, the MSM is almost completely silent. Simply "pointing out that someone is dismembered or disfigured" is not "honoring" them.

Honoring them is recognizing their sacrifice by placing it in perspective. No one in the MSM, for example, has ever acknowledged that those who join the military and put their lives on the line for their country do so voluntarily and that they see it as a profession; with professional risks that they are willing to take. Instead, they focus on the one or two who deeply regret having made the choice to serve and now want to break their committments and walk away from it all. Such morally vacillating individuals are celebrated for "coming to their senses" and heroically "speaking truth to power". That they made a choice and that the honorable thing would be to live with the consequences of that choice is never discussed. It is considered a "travesty" that they have consequences--like a court martial--at all.

Almost everything that is reported is designed to demonstrate what an awful war the poor victimized soldiers have to fight in. And how inconsiderate and uncaring the evil Bush Administration is toward their plight.

You may have noticed that, for the most part, there are only two templates that exist for journalism on the U.S. military: Either, (1) they are the poor helpless victims of an oppressive military system and the current political administration which horribly abuses them; OR, (2) they are the brutal, savage, sadistic psychopaths that enjoy inflicting death and misery and who are encouraged to do so by the oppressive military system and the current political administration.

Do you also notice something familiar about these two templates? They just happen to dovetail nicely with the same old, tired marxist view of the world; where a person is either one of the "oppressed" victims or one of the brutal "oppressors".

Apparently that is the only world view taught in journalism schools these days. And, further, the journalist wannabees are encouraged to bring their perspective (they call it "social justice" in the nether realms of neo-marxism) into every article and story as part of the journalist's role of being an advocate for the socialist way.

Caught up in the marxist agenda of their postmodern rhetoric--with which they hope to "make the world a better place"--the graduates of these journalism schools march in lockstep with the other "oppressed" people of the world, including the poor victimized terrorists and all the helpless and persecuted dictators and tyrants who also only want to make the world a better place (with them in charge, of course).

But if you speak to the vast majority of military personnel; or read the blogs and letters they write home about their experiences, they will give you a perspected that does not depend on the marxist dialectic template; and which also presents a more realistic and honest portrayal of events.

In their own writings you can clearly see the honor they bring to their mission; and the everyday valor and courage they live as they serve their country.

The important point is this: the grim costs of any war or conflict--which include the damaged lives and bodies of the soldiers depicted in the latest round of MSM handwringing over Walter Reed, as well as the death of every soldier in Iraq and anywhere--must always be placed in the context of how much peace and security have their sacrifice, given voluntarily and with honor, brought to the country and people they willingly serve?

The inescapable truth is that there has not been another 9/11 to date on our soil. This reality was an unimaginable one after that horrific day in our history. No one thought that we would be spared for the next 5 years. Yet that is exactly what has happened; and the only conclusion that can be drawn is that it is the bold (and occasionally flawed) actions of our military--in Iraq and Afghanistan, along with other efforts by this administration, that have made us safe during this time. And, other areas of the world (e.g. Europe-- whose countries are in full appeasement mode) have not been.

James Lewis remarked at American Thinker in a recent editorial about the utter moral vacuity of the left and its media partners:
The greatest disappointment since 9/11/01 has been the total moral vacuity of the Left—a complete and utter nullity—both here and in Europe. Today, five years later, psychological denial still rules the day, and the few Democrats who raise their heads above the screaming mob are chased out, like Joe Lieberman and Zell Miller.

One-third of American voters are still being suckered by the left-wing media, who live in some sort of Toon-Town where you can Have your Cake and Eat it Too, where Lunches are Free and Health Care is Too, and where there are no ideological killer movements in this world, and to achieve World Peace you just have to point your finger at the “Warmongers” and scream really loud. The Left is now populated by “mewling, puking infants,” as William Shakespeare put it, utterly lacking an understanding of the world as it is.

Sowell concludes with this:
People's opinions can differ on troop deployment, even if -- like House Speaker Nancy Pelosi -- they have never deployed troops in their lives and have no military experience whatsoever.

But if anyone in Congress is serious about stopping the war, they can simply cut off the money -- and take responsibility for the consequences that follow.

Instead, they want to have it both ways, passing a non-binding resolution whose only effect is to embolden our enemies and undermine the morale of our troops that they keep saying they are "supporting."

If you can extricate yourself from the postmodern neo-marxist rhetoric for just a brief moment, you might reflect that the greatest way to honor the members of our military is to give them the status of real human beings with free will--and not automatons of a ridiculous marxist dialectic, i.e., they are neither oppressors nor are they oppressed--who have chosen to fight for this country; and who want only to complete the mission they have been given with honor and integrity. They are willing to cope with the consequences of their choices and they do so on a daily basis.

And in this postmodern day and age, that accomplishment is truly, remarkably heroic.

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