Saturday, November 11, 2017

Forget Me Not

--Forget Me Nots


Happy Veterans Day. It's an odd thing to say, looked at one way.

"Happy" is not the usual discriptor for the things a soldier must do. Is it a day for "Happy Veterans"? Are we happy that others -- the veterans -- do the things we would rather not think about, i.e., "We're happy that it is you, and not me"?

But to the aphorisms:

1) Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) is the soul dying faster than the body.

2) PTSD = feeling, thinking and reacting to the unreality of a situation.

3) Moral Injury is the phantom pain of the lost soul.

4) It is simple to kill a man, but doing so is never simple, nor is it easy, unless one had lost touch with his soul.

5) Remembering is not the same thing as not forgetting. (Coda: Forgetting is not the same thing as not remembering.)

6) If I am at peace with myself, then meditation is superfluous. My life is my meditation.

7) What if your memories are totally false? Worse, what if they are true?

8) You can't live in the past, but the past can live in you.

9) Films like "American Sniper" are neither history nor entertainment. These reiterations provide a rebranding of the Phony War on Terror (PWOT). They seek to legitimize the illegitimate.

To be heretical, they are the iconic "early eight-month baby" in church-sanctioned shotgun weddings. They are the Immaculate Conceptions of the war theatre.

10) Counterinsurgency Rule One: "First, do no harm".

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Anonymous David said...

Maybe it's something people say because they don't know what else to say.

On point 5, Veterans Day is actually called Remembrance Day in Canada. It's increasingly unclear what people are supposed to be "remembering" since there are few still alive who fought in Europe, the Pacific, or even Korea. Instead I have watched since 9/11, having been in this country in November most of the years since then, as the day becomes more and more a generic celebration of military heroism.

Sunday, November 12, 2017 at 2:23:00 AM GMT-5  
Blogger rangeragainstwar said...

i've been in Canada on Rem day.the bagpipes are always sorrowful.

the flowers are the point today , or so it seems.
at the luncheon sponsored by ohio ordnance works they had poppies at every place setting.
my family had my grandmothers first husband killed in aug 1914.that is family legend.
i take the long view on wars of the US.
in 1917 ROTC was instituted to provide citizen soldiers to augment the regular army.
at my university BGSU there is a memorial plaque in the rotc area of memorial hall. 78 bg attendees have been kia since 1917.
50 years later i became contractually bound to the usarmy. 50 years have now passed and that makes rotc and my life interlocked with the army.
just think of the wars fought in those two time warps.
anyway poppies grew in flanders fields and 48 000 +/- died fighting to protect foreign empires.
today i will be in bg.
2 of my classmates were kia in rvn.
-steve mylant usmc
-doug mabee us army.
i knew them both. steve was a high school member of st joes my old school.
this trip is a slap thru time.

Sunday, November 12, 2017 at 7:37:00 AM GMT-5  
Blogger mike said...

I always thought Remembrance Day was a better name. Yesterday I was at an event where one of our neighbors was remembered. He had passed on earlier this year in his nineties. A veteran of Guadalcanal, later wounded at New Gloucester, then a war bond tour stateside, and rounded it off by participating in the landings at Okinawa.

He had a wonderful sense of humor. His favorite story about his time at Guadalcanal was the capture of a ton of Japanese rice. It was moldy and full of weevils, yet they ate it because there were no resupplies of rations. He said, "I told cooky that there were critters wiggling in my rice, but cooky said 'eat it' the protein will be good for you. So I ate it and you know it wasn't half bad". Then he would roar with an infectious laughter. Someone once asked him how it felt to be a member of the greatest generation. He responded by saying that honor belonged to his grandchildren and not to him.

Sunday, November 12, 2017 at 2:19:00 PM GMT-5  
Anonymous David said...


I think it's a fine name.

However there is no one left now who remembers the war it was created for.

And every year there are fewer people who remember the people who remember the war.

Sunday, November 12, 2017 at 11:18:00 PM GMT-5  
Blogger The Mad Dog said...

This happy veteran loves this piece (peace?). Lisa and Jim, I hope this finds you well. I'm still giving life a sharp stick in the eye. Hooah!

Monday, November 13, 2017 at 4:45:00 PM GMT-5  
Blogger The Mad Dog said...

I have fought when others feared to serve.
I have gone where others failed to go.
I've lost friends in war and strife,
Who valued Duty more than love of life.

I have shared the comradeship of pain.
I have searched the lands for men that we have lost.
I have sons who served this land of liberty,
Who would fight to see that other stricken lands are free.

I have seen the weak forsake humanity.
I have heard the traitors praise our enemy.
I've seen challenged men become even bolder,
I've seen the Duty, Honor, Sacrifice of the Soldier.

Now I understand the meaning of our lives,
The loss of comrades not so very long ago.
So to you who have answered duties siren call,
May God bless you my son, may God bless you all.

Lewis Millett

Monday, November 13, 2017 at 4:49:00 PM GMT-5  
Blogger rangeragainstwar said...

i was commisioned 5 jun 68 by lew millett at bgsu ohio,.
i have pics of the event.
small world.

Friday, November 17, 2017 at 10:57:00 AM GMT-5  
Blogger The Mad Dog said...

Jim, I'm astonished. Small world indeed. Fate brings people together in strange ways.

Friday, November 17, 2017 at 4:37:00 PM GMT-5  

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