Friday, March 31, 2006

Hypocrisy of "Support"

I've recently been thinking about the claims that democrats against the war still "support the troops." Democrats seem to think they can criticize the mission, while still supporting those who carry out the mission. And I think they could, if they really meant it. But just what does it mean to "support the troops?"

-Supporting the troops means giving them at least the benefit of the doubt when they are accused by their enemies of wrong doing. From mosque raids, to shooting injured fighters, to using white phosphorous, to targeting journalists, our soldiers have been accused of quite a bit. And this isn't only a recent phenomenon; Veitnam-era soldiers endured taunts of "baby-killer" from the same people protesting the war today. (see the last note at the bottom) John Kerry himself testified soldiers who had "raped, cut off ears, cut off heads, taped wires from portable telephones to human genitals and turned up the power, cut off limbs, blown up bodies, randomly shot at civilians, razed villages in fashion reminiscent of Genghis Khan, shot cattle and dogs for fun, poisoned food stocks, and generally ravaged the countryside of South Vietnam in addition to the normal ravage of war, and the normal and very particular ravaging which is done by the applied bombing power of this country."
Liberals and their ilk who are so quick to believe the worst of our servicemen should admit that they suspect the troops, not support them.

-Supporting the troops means honoring their memory, not hijacking their deaths. From the anti-American news media demanding pictures of coffins being unloading from airplanes, to "grieving" mothers whoring their status for a few minutes of fame, claiming to support the troops is a cheap mask for an anti-American agenda.
Ending a newscast by reading the names of the fallen soldiers would be respectful, but not when you portray them as victims. Similarly with media-magnet Ms. Shehan. These men and women were soldiers and often heroes, and went into battle knowing and accepting the risk because it was their accepted duty. I'm reminded of the famous letter that Lincoln sent to a mother who had lost five sons to the civil war:
I pray that our Heavenly Father may assuage the anguish of your bereavement, and leave you only the cherished memory of the loved and lost, and the solemn pride that must be yours to have laid so costly a sacrifice upon the altar of freedom.
There is a pride and honor that comes from giving their all, and portraying them as victims of an imperialist war robs them of that honor.

-Supporting the troops means aiding them in their job. That can be as simple as not opposing them. Calls for retreat from Iraq, belief in outrageous accusations against soldiers, and constant negative reporting not only hurts our soldiers morale, it emboldens our enemies. Our retreats from Somalia emboldened Osama to continue his attacks on the US, this time within our borders. And this whole idea of "support" is just becoming a shield-word to cover from criticism. Take nut-job congresswoman Cynthia McKinney. She punched a Capitol police officer Wednesday. I'll leave the details to be read in the article (click 'punched'), but that night she came out with this statement on her website:

"I know that Capitol Hill Police are securing our safety, and I appreciate the work that they do. I have demonstrated my support for them in the past and I continue to support them now,"
However, Her lawyer, James W. Myart Jr., said, "Congresswoman Cynthia McKinney, like thousands of average Americans across this country, is, too, a victim of the excessive use of force by law enforcement officials because of how she looks and the color of her skin."
So does McKinney support law enforcement officials? She's using two different and contradictory defence tactics here, each aimed at a different audience. First, she sides with the officer(s) and "supports" them. But she's also a repressed black woman being assaulted because of "sex, race and Ms. McKinney's progressiveness." And now her lawyer is talking about suing the officer and the Capitol Police that McKinney supports.
[McKinney lawyer] Myart said McKinney would seek a criminal investigation against the officer, and a civil lawsuit against both the officer and the Capitol Police is being explored.
Thats the problem liberals face when dealing with politics. On the one hand they need to appear normal, and to be on America's side (seeing as how, ya know, they are America's government and all). On the other hand, they either are anti-American and see the military (and the police) as a repressive tool of the imperialist, bigoted American government (union employees excepted), or they depend on the funding and votes of people who do.

From opinionjournal:
Your observation that "Vietnam-style defeatism . . . is an ingrained impulse of aging hippies" is astute. I would go further and speculate on the motivation for their actions. As people get older and near retirement, when their children have grown and they have more free time on their hands, they may take up hobbies to pass the time and make new friends. The hobby they choose is often connected with a past interest, one they stopped pursuing during their active years for lack of time. For example, many men will buy and restore a brand of car that they admired as teenagers.
Here in Seattle, where there is a high concentration of aging hippies and Wobblies, many protesters seem more interested in the social than the political aspect of their gatherings. Every Sunday afternoon, a small group gathers at a local park, ostensibly to wave signs at passing motorists. They mostly chat and share refreshments. Even on weeks when there is an "atrocity" that might stimulate turnout, few more than the core group put in an appearance.
Rarely do I see anyone under 40 at these rallies. I have come to the conclusion that rallying is the hobby of the aging hippie. How better to relive your youth? The country's defeat in Vietnam was their victory. Calling for America's defeat now helps them get a thrill, the same way driving an old Cobra excites the retired hot-rodder.


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