RANGER AGAINST WAR: A Theory of Relativity <

Friday, March 19, 2010

A Theory of Relativity

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When U.S. pilots were held in North Vietnamese prisons and called war criminals for bombing civilian targets, we celebrated them as heroes. But we corral and detain Taliban goat herders fighting the U.S. incursion as "illegal enemies," depicting them as the personification of evil.

In WW II, the U.S. Army Air Corps utilized terror bombing of civilian targets in Japan and Germany, and we feted our air crews as heroes. The civilian deaths caused were not the result of collateral damage, but rather direct targeting.


Vilifying goat herders for picking up a rifle and defending their mud huts, versus praising U.S. bombing of civilians, then and now. There is a disparity here.

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26 Comments:

Blogger The Minstrel Boy said...

curtis leMay, who planned and commanded the air assaults on tokyo and mainland japan when honestly assessing the horrific nature of the napalm raids on densely populated civilian targets (the firestorms caused by the bombing of tokyo were big enough and hot enough to create their own weather, winds and rains, just like the firestorms of california do) commented that if the US were to lose the war he would most certainly be charged as a war criminal.

this is in no way meant to minimize any of horrific brutality the japanese inflicted on the world in general but asia in particular.

in the philipines, in vietnam, on the malay peninsuala, china, all along the islands you can find people who directly suffered from the japanese invasions and occupations.

the viet minh that became the viet cong and the pathet lao both began as resistance fighters to the japanese.

it must be very confusing to the afghans who were lauded by ronald reagan as being "the moral equivilant of our founders" when they were fighting the russian invaders are now "unlawful combatants" and "terrorists." because they are mounting the very same resistance to our invasion and occupation.

i know that's the kind of bullshit that would confuse the mad motherfuck outta me.

being kidnapped by the CIA, rendered to some black hole somewhere, to be held indefinitely without any kind of charge or recourse while be tortured must not seem like any kind of defense of freedom to them.

trying to put my mind in the mind of an afghani villager means that i can't see a dimes worth of difference between our occupation and the russians.

well, maybe it's that the russians didn't stomp all over those folks and tell them they were doing them a favor. the russians were cruel and brutal, but they didn't pretend to be anything else.

maybe we can send john edwards, john ensign, david vitter, mark sanford and larry craig over there to lecture them on family values and shit like that.

the afghans wouldn't like us any better, but at least we wouldn't have to listen to those assholes over here.

Saturday, March 20, 2010 at 3:49:00 AM GMT-5  
Blogger Lisa said...

MB,

I like your theo. of relativity.

Saturday, March 20, 2010 at 11:29:00 AM GMT-5  
Blogger rangeragainstwar said...

MB,
As you surely know by now, i don't give a pile of dogshit for AFGH/Irq or any other nation.
Our country is becoming a chocolate mess and we are focusing on elective wars ,when our lives are unraveling.
People deny that the wars effect the economy,but i just don't buy that.

B/c the Japs were evil, wicked, mean and nasty that does not excuse our non-military bombing targets. This is reminiscent of Sand Creek.
jim

Saturday, March 20, 2010 at 3:38:00 PM GMT-5  
Blogger Ghost Dansing said...

chasing bin ladin reminds me of chasin' pancho...

Saturday, March 20, 2010 at 5:09:00 PM GMT-5  
Blogger Ghost Dansing said...

Apache...

Saturday, March 20, 2010 at 5:32:00 PM GMT-5  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks all for the education, it's the winners (use loose)write the history something my Pop told me along time ago.

maybe we can send john edwards, john ensign, david vitter, mark sanford and larry craig over there to lecture them on family values and shit like that.

This would be great idea and better if they didn't come back.
Ranger we should care because it's all coming home some day soon. Sad

jo6pac

Saturday, March 20, 2010 at 7:58:00 PM GMT-5  
Blogger Jim3rdOpsBN said...

Been confused for a long time how a guy killing women and children from an aircraft high above a country with no air defense (or even with it) by dropping a bomb is a star-spangled hero, but a guy who kills same by strapping a bomb to himself and knowing with certaintly he'll lose his own life is a cowardly terrorist.

They both seem like total assholes to me.

And now we have the upright heroes of drone warfare who aren't even taking the risk of being aircrew.

This hero thing bugs me too. Used to be you had to go above and beyond the call of duty to be a "hero".. now you just have to show up.

Sunday, March 21, 2010 at 10:53:00 AM GMT-5  
Blogger rangeragainstwar said...

Jim,
In the 1st GW we rained death on the Highway of Death that was retrograding Iraqi forces back to their country. They were no longer combative AND we had no intention of invading IRQ, at that time.Ergo the deaths were not military in nature since they threw down their weapons and were running as individuals rather than organised units.
At the time this was disturbing and it still is.
jim

Sunday, March 21, 2010 at 11:32:00 AM GMT-5  
Blogger Jim3rdOpsBN said...

Yup.. if anyone else did something like that we'd name them pariah... but of course, if Americans do it.. well, that's different.

Such national blindness just can't lead to a happy ending

Sunday, March 21, 2010 at 12:30:00 PM GMT-5  
Blogger Ghost Dansing said...

American Exceptionalism...

Sunday, March 21, 2010 at 2:25:00 PM GMT-5  
Blogger Lisa said...

G.D.,

I always appreciate your appropriate links and amazing You Tubes. How do you find this stuff?

Thanks -- it always adds to the pieces.

Sunday, March 21, 2010 at 2:58:00 PM GMT-5  
Blogger Ghost Dansing said...

thanks Lisa. nobody heard his dying words... but that's the way it goes...

Sunday, March 21, 2010 at 4:15:00 PM GMT-5  
Blogger Lisa said...

G.D.,

Ever the cryptic (Pancho and Lefty?) :)

Sunday, March 21, 2010 at 4:23:00 PM GMT-5  
Blogger Ghost Dansing said...

Jim 'n Lisa would prolly like this one.... i stole it from the Penguin...

Sunday, March 21, 2010 at 4:36:00 PM GMT-5  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

But - God is on OUR side. OK - sorry I got nothing

Sunday, March 21, 2010 at 5:49:00 PM GMT-5  
Anonymous tw said...

I had these same thoughts during the election about McCain being called a hero and being tortured. What would I do to this guy if I caught him after he'd been dropping bombs on my home?

When I was in Dix in AIT I took a weekend pass and went to NJ to visit my uncle. At the dinner table when discussing the VN war knowing full well that I was probably on my way there, my aunts comment was "I just wish they wouldn't show it on TV." Therein lies part of the problem. We don't see the death and destruction our "heros" reap on the civilian populations. Hell, we can't even see the caskets of our own fallen soldiers coming home. We worry about saving the unborn but don't give a second thought to what our bombs are doing to the children in our elective war zones. We're a very insulated and indoctrinated society. We react to the politics of fear and our might makes us right.

After VN, my aunt got her wish. We don't see it on TV anymore.

Sunday, March 21, 2010 at 11:08:00 PM GMT-5  
Blogger rangeragainstwar said...

GD,
His dying words were-how the f--k did i end up in Cleveland????
jim

Monday, March 22, 2010 at 8:38:00 AM GMT-5  
Blogger rangeragainstwar said...

TW,
Now we show high tech wowwy zowwy stuff that reinforces our superiority. Like shock and awe etc.
Throw in a hanging every now and then and everything is cool.
jim

Monday, March 22, 2010 at 8:48:00 AM GMT-5  
Blogger Lisa said...

G.D.,

Better than Leonard Cohen.

Thank you so much.


tw,

You bring an intriguing point when mentioning the fanaticism for the "unborn" (actually, the unformed, the foetus.) Those same sorts are also fanatically anti-life once that bundle of joy arrives. In other words, fanatically against social programs which might help actual people.

They live by a creed which says something is wrong with you if you do not prosper per God's will. They are extremely inhumane to the human.

Monday, March 22, 2010 at 11:03:00 AM GMT-5  
Anonymous Missouri Mule said...

Can we send Palin, too? I know youse guys are against wemens going to war and all, but ya gotta admit it would be fittin' if you included her, Music Man.

Monday, March 22, 2010 at 11:44:00 AM GMT-5  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm wondering how that Theory of Relativity line Jim started here applies to that wonderful NYT headline yesterday about the US Forces in Agfhani not interfering with the opium crop?
"DEA and Treasury did not comment." mmm hmm

Sweet friggin' jee-bus..what next?

uh oh... best not ask or some fool politico/media-General or all 'round asshole will try to top it.

TW..your post reminded me too, that yesterday's NYT mag had a rather voyeuristic series of pics of dead troopers' bedrooms when they were guileless, fervent patriots and of the fact that we can't stand to see the truth of their young dead selves or their victims..err..uhh...the "enemy".
Hell, I'm guessing we've reached the stage where the only good patriot is a dead patriot-or a teabagger or a ...

Maybe I could get ahead of the curve and print up a bunch of "America--Love it or Leave It" bumperstickers.

Y'all buying?

There it is.
Deryle

Monday, March 22, 2010 at 1:19:00 PM GMT-5  
Blogger Lisa said...

Hi Miss Mule, nice to hear from you. I'll be writing again on womens soon.


Deryle,

I dunno 'bout yer bumper stickers ya got in mind ... Just thinkin' -- "Love it or ... " sumpin' else goes here.

Monday, March 22, 2010 at 2:28:00 PM GMT-5  
Blogger Jim3rdOpsBN said...

Back during the Shock and Awe spectacle my Rightwing Christian collegues were all discussing about what a great necessity it all was and yammering on and on with no clue in the world... I asked them if they realized that fetuses were being killed in the bombing.... stunned silence for about 10 seconds... then back to the rightwing talking points.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010 at 1:49:00 AM GMT-5  
Blogger Lisa said...

Jim3rdOps,

I really appreciate that attempt to shake them awake. "Fetuses are dying" -- dear God, that's brilliant!

Ah, but you see, they were hajii fetuses. Doesn't matter; or maybe they're worth 3/5th of an anglo fetus. I dunno ...

Tuesday, March 23, 2010 at 11:09:00 AM GMT-5  
Blogger Terrible said...

Howdy Missouri Mule! Haven't seen you in a mules age! I don't get over to the Blondesense kitchen these days.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010 at 11:56:00 AM GMT-5  
Anonymous Missouri Mule said...

Lisa, I will look forward to that!
I've been reading Ranger Against War daily for some time now. But I just listen---all that smoke over there in the corner? That's me. Chain-smoking and taking notes.

Terrible, howdy to you, too, hon!
I don't get around much anymore. My eye sight is almost gone with the wind.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010 at 5:39:00 PM GMT-5  

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