Monday, April 10, 2017

army national guard photo

My younger son sent along the above photo from Ft. Bliss, Texas, where he and his team are prepping for deployment next month to the Sinai Peninsula. At a quick initial glance, I could not locate my son ... everyone looked the same. When I finally did sort him out (far right), it occurred to me that my earlier not-knowing was 100% more accurate. No smarm ... but which of these is not my son? No smarm ... but which of these is Donald Trump and family willing to send on a mission that lacks specificity or goal or policy ... and whose outcome might be a quickly-forgotten death?


  1. I don't mean to offend, but I've never met people from any other country who have such pride in the notion of 'serving' in the armed forces (either themselves or in general) as in the US. Maybe it's because of coming from a country that experienced a long and brutal war, and having a more realistic view of it, but I could never wrap my head around the concept of being a soldier being nearly sanctified.

    1. "I could never wrap my head around the concept of being a soldier being nearly sanctified."

      The first thing into my head is that sanctification and shame are close relatives.

  2. There is some kind of connection between the members of an organized fight force and dedication to some "higher" "spirit."

    We can easily see this spirit in the Ancient Greeks, the Japanese Samurai, the assorted American Armed Forces, etc. Nevertheless I can't speak to the actual social dynamics.

    There's also a relationship between civilians and it's nations military. Perhaps it's simply that the military protects and the civilians are grateful. Then there's an addition layer of mystique expressed by physical conditioning, fighting skill, and weapons expertise.

    While I do think that the "spirit" is often abused and manipulated, there is something to it. E.g. "Leave no man behind." "Band of Brothers."