One Veteran's Voice

01 November 2006

Explaining Irony to the Stupid, a Challenge, and the Acceptance of an Apology

After watching Prince John's remarks in context-- as opposed to ten-second-soundbite-followed-by-inane-talking-head-commentary form-- it was obvious, at least to me, that he was attempting to poke fun at Bush's lack of foreign policy know-how and not the intelligence level of U.S. grunts. I mean, come on. The Prince's joke sucked. It was poorly written. The meaning was unclear. He forgot to add a clause after, "stuck in Iraq," namely, "like King George is." Still a bit mean spirited and tasteless, for a supposed statesman. But now that he's been the bigger man and apologized to those dumb enough not to see the irony, can we start debating what is really going on in Iraq, and stop engaging in the meta-debate over the same? Hey John, need a new speech writer? Be my patron, pay my tuition, and it's on.

At the risk of engaging in the meta-debate myself: Is this the best the other side can throw out there at this point? Why don't you ask this guy, he's an Iraq veteran running as a cut-and-run, cowardly, Democrat. I think that's the party's basic platform these days. Or ask this guy. Or this gal. Or any of the other Iraq vets running for office.

While we're all gawking, amazed, watching Prince John stuff his silver foot in his mouth yet again, an American soldier is being held-- most likely kidnapped by the Mahdi militia or a faction thereof. While I'm not (ironically) a betting man, I bet his kidnapping had something to do with this interesting tidbit. Intelligence has it that he might be in Sadr City, a zone where the Iraqi government has ordered U.S. checkpoints closed, basically a no-go zone for U.S. troops, all under the watchful eye of one Muqtada al-Sadr. Boy, brings me back to my glory days in Sadr City, circa 2004. You know how many U.S. servicemembers' deaths this guy is directly responsible for? I'm too lazy to do the research: but it's more than I can count to on my fingers and toes and less than the thousands of deaths King George and Prince John carry on their shoulders. Excuse my ironic jibe, Your Majesty, meant in jest; Prince John, are you taking notes? Sucks to have so much responsibility, Your Highnesses, but you did ask for it. If we're fighting a war on Islamo-facists, why don't we take out Muqtada, the armed Islamo-facist? Why is he calling the shots in Iraq? What are we accomplishing in Iraq? Why are Americans dying in sectarian cross-fire? Is there a plan? Or is it all just rhetoric and flourish?

By the way, I'm tired of all these motherfuckin', draft-dodgin', duty-shirkin', deferment-gettin' snakes on the motherfuckin propaganda plane: Newt, Limbaugh, et. al-- who, although never having demonstrated loyalty to country through their own voluntary participation in armed conflict on its behalf, have yet again called into question the patriotism of decorated combat vets in order to maintain their party's nefarious political power. Get Samuel L. to say that one and you've got a dynamite campaign ad-- knock Michael J. on his ass. Someone give me some of that soft money they're always talking about.

I am glad I wound up in Missouri so that I can cast a vote in a race that actually counts. Not that any of you who live elsewhere don't count, it's just that statistically, I count more, and that's a really satisfying feeling right now. Since I haven't yet resorted to armed revolution, it's pretty much the only small vengeance a citizen of this Empire in Denial can enact these days. Or you get locked up in Guantanamo and denied Habeas Corpus. Didn't we decide that, sometime back in the 13th century, a fundamental right of a citizen was not to be indefinitely detained by his rulers without a certain degree of legal proof, the certainty of which was determined in courts of law, and not military tribunals?

And they think the ones coming back from Iraq are loco. America: this one is such a no-brainer that I'm surprised King George hasn't figured it out. I have to believe that he just hasn't figured it out and not that he has figured it out but won't withdraw because he thinks it would be to admit personal defeat. Which is different than an actual national defeat. No, that would be too cynical, even for me. So let me enlighten Your Highnesses: Iraq is not part of the War on Terror, as such. It certainly does have the power to draw that whole crowd, though-- the crazy jihadis, the religious fanatics who don't drink-- the sexual hypocrites. You know, those kinds of people. The ones who aren't any fun at the cosmic dinner party. The ones in the White Houses. Sadly, the continuance of the flawed policy of occupation has the undesired power to create the genuine personal hatreds and politically polarizing atmosphere that the crazy-bad jihadis need, in order to recruit people into their growing organizations. But, from personal experience, they're not the biggest problem in Iraq. They cause the most terror, sure. Truck bombs suck. Correction: the people who cause the most terror are the Republicans who replay their propaganda videos as campaign ads every hour or so, to terrorize Americans into voting for them. But there just aren't enough of the hard-core, blow-myself-up people in Iraq to explain the scope of what's going on in Iraq. It's the militias, stupid. It's a motivated, nationalistic insurgency. It's never, ever going to stop. Not even if we stay for a hundred years. Not unless we kill every male child.

Republicans: be sane here-- the goat herders are not going to follow us across the Atlantic. We can still bomb the people with the capabilities to hurt us, whenever we get actionable intelligence, and I will laugh along side you with glee when we finally drop one on Osama. We can encourage their brutal, repressive governments to arrest and torture whoever we want to their and our hearts' content. We just can't hand over our own citizens to be tortured without a trial, that's where this crazy liberal draws the line, these days. We can't invade a whole country because it is ruled by a nutty dictator who doesn't like us, and who happens to be of the same ethnicity that attacked us. Let's get sane again. Right now we are fighting the War on Terror like a blinded boxer in a bar fight: punching the wrong people, stirring up trouble, making enemies-- you know he's going to get tired in the end, overcome, taken down, and then stomped-- but for now he's still standing and fighting, bravely, stupidly. It's time to wake up and choose to view reality without the rosy colored glasses of what-we-want-to-be-true. The Crusade for Democracy in Iraq was a noble venture, but this fool thinks it's time to start bringing it to a close.

Although I am a registered independent, and an independent thinker, I have to throw out this challenge to all my able-bodied compatriots, men and women, ages 18 to, what-is-it-these-days, 39?

Abstain, Vote Democratic or Enlist.


Ole Blue The Heretic said...

I think the irony here is that most of the press and politicians on all sides always say how the military enlistees are mostly low income people with only a high school education.

11/02/2006 01:16:00 PM  
One Veteran said...

To a degree, although that really didn't seem to be what Kerry was getting at-- he shot himself in the foot on accident, not on purpose.

Although FOX news was quick to point out that average education level has actually gone up throughout the war.

Combat troops are actually, believe it or not, typically from higher socioeconomic strata than support troops.

The whole thing is ironic, flashback to 2004 presidential campaign.

And why are Democrats bashing their own party-- haven't they learned anything? When you validate these smear tactics, they work by default.

John Kerry's apology was appropriate, no more needs to be said.

11/02/2006 01:22:00 PM  
The Truffle said...

Next time someone flags this dead horse, someone should point out that Kerry the wannabe comedian got a B rating from IAVA. In other words, he has a good voting record on military and veterans' issues.

11/02/2006 02:50:00 PM  
Sara said...

Already voted! Like over a week ago. Love the mail-in ballots. Now I just want this damn thing to be over so we can start moving forward and kicking ass.

And that Kerry remark was so taken out of context and then broadcast around the world. He wasn't even talking about the troops, but that's what the fucking media turns it into. So some joe is sitting outside of G1 back at Drum/Hood/Bragg waiting to get his picture taken for his new ID card with an expiration date of 2050 so he can serve indefinitely in Iraq and he has to watch FOX because he can't leave and that's what's on the TV ALL FUCKING DAY and those asshole reporters play some clip that make it seem like the Democrats think people like him end up in Iraq because were too lazy to study enough in college. And another soldier thinks the Dems dislike the military. Nevermind all the vets running on the Democratic ticket this election, nevermind all the hideous, dispicable things the Republicans have done to soldiers and veterans alike. Nevermind all that, we gotta focus on some quote taken completely outta context because the DEMOCRATS HATE AMERICA.

Sorry for the multiple run-on sentences. But damn is there some good beer out here.

Glad you're posting. Everytime I start to think about anything remotely military related I get some sort of weird stomachache and have to mentally change the subject. Hope school is going well. :)

11/03/2006 02:13:00 AM  
nunya said...

Dude! I was getting worried there. Great post.
Something is working for this Administration to continue painting a rosy picture. "Divide and Conquer" is one of the oldest military strategies, isn't it?
Bush Names Exxon Chief to Chart America's Energy Future
BBC Iraq key maps

Whoever planned American infrastructure sure didn't look too far into the future.
Clusterfuck Nation by James Howard Kunstler

11/04/2006 03:19:00 AM  
nunya said...

This article title caught my eye this morning: The president's real goal in Iraq

11/04/2006 01:43:00 PM  
Not-QuiteRight said...

The ignorance that pervades this administration is remarkable, indeed, the many reports regarding George W. Bush’s distaste for the democratically elected Maliki, and subsequent argument for a replacement regime, is astounding. Further, the consistent claims of cowardice, or willingness on the “left” to “loose this war,” as leveled by this administration in response to the withdrawal or re-deployment strategies defined by the Democrats, are undeniable examples of the “right’s” ignorance; in light of the most recent speeches by George W. Bush and his compadres, which articulate a strategy of a step-down in troop activity, and eventual withdrawal. Indeed, the term “time table” was even articulated. Ignorance, and the unwillingness to accept both responsibility for their actions and alternative voices, plague this administration. John Kerry’s remarks simply offered those in need, the opportunity for reproach, in a climate of constant criticism directed their way. Indeed, Kerry’s remarks were distasteful; even if articulated properly, it seems inaccurate to label George W. Bush “stupid,” although I may agree with such a title.

Interesting arguments here.

11/06/2006 12:31:00 PM  
IrritatedVet said...

One Veteran:

Excellent comments, and now - having seen the Dems take both houses - I'd still ove to meet with you and see what you think about stuff. You can reach me through the email on my page. Hope all's well - Irritated Vet

11/21/2006 03:13:00 AM  
Anonymous said...

I was one of the lucky ones who had never seen combat.

I think John was living in the past when he spoke those words.

I never finished high school, instead I joined the Navy and that was the way it was back then.

I think John just made a mistake, and nobody probably would have even noticed if it wasn't flaunted so.

Unfortunately, soldiers of today wouldn't understand, not having lived in the past.

It used to be, those who could afford college could avoid the draft. If you were smart enough to earn a scholarship, you would be one of the lucky ones. Kerry was living in the past when he said that, it was not meant as an insult.

I think he suffers like many of us who is shocked that America has forgotten the mistake we made in Vietnam and wishes to do it again. Except I think this could be worse, because at least in Vietnam, we had an enemy. But in Iraq we're in the middle trying to stop a fight - I would hate to be there and feel sorry for any soldier sent there.

12/15/2006 08:44:00 AM  

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