Two aspects of warfare that raise disturbing questions:
In the first video below, made by members of the 3rd Battalion, 5th Marines in Fallujah, Iraq, the emphasis is on the “Honor”, “Courage”, and “Commitment” of the great American heroes, who, with tanks, machine guns, white phosphorus, and all the modern weaponry of an advanced military power, take on the men, women, and children of Fallujah in what has now become widely recognized as yet another great American massacre* of innocents.
This clip ends with the quote from George S Patton:
“As I walk through the valley of the shadow of death I have no fear because I am the meanest motherfucker in the valley.”
The end credits contain what can only be assumed is a sarcastic and distasteful piece of text:
“And a very special thanks to the people of Fallujah for allowing us to film in your city”
I doubt those who remained alive in Fallujah had any choice in the matter.
I suppose when any American soldier prides himself on being “the meanest motherfucker in the valley”, his indoctrination is complete and he is ‘safe’ to be let loose in a foreign country, with no risk of him pausing to consider what exactly he is doing to its people.
The video is doubtless designed to appeal to the young, ultra-macho, would-be warrior champing at his bootlaces to catch a piece of the action while “enemy” still remain to be killed in Iraq. It will no doubt succeed in sending him scurrying to the recruiting center.
Were he to watch this second video, it might just send him scurrying back home to Mommy.
If America truly considers “the meanest motherfuckers in the valley” to be the embodiment of honor, courage, and commitment, then it is indeed, one very sick country.
As sick today as the Great Britain of one hundred years ago, when mental illness was callously labeled “cowardice”.
*My thanks to TOB for the New Statesman link.
Filed under: Misplaced values