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"Veterans, Terrorists, and so forth" Topic


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875 hits since 14 Jan 2022
©1994-2022 Bill Armintrout
Comments or corrections?

Personal logo Editor in Chief Bill The Editor of TMP Fezian14 Jan 2022 9:07 a.m. PST

Just wanted to pass along some things which have recently crossed my editor's desk.

1. Veterans

I suppose it's controversial today whether veterans deserve any special respect – some say they are just doing a job, others say only Americans have this love of veterans. Personally, I like veterans. I never served, but both of my fathers served in WWII (one was a Marine), and my great-grandfather fought for the Union in the Civil War.

However, it's been suggested that veterans are above criticism, or that disagreeing with a veteran is the same as disparaging him. That seems silly to me. Veterans are still human beings, they can be right or wrong, we don't need to turn them into saints beyond criticism.

2. Terrorists

I'm told by one of our readers that terrorism is a form of politics, and therefore cannot be discussed on the forum.

I can see that from some academic viewpoint, terrorism might be classed on the political spectrum, but it is certainly not part of the ordinary, partisan politics that forum rules prohibit.

In fact, terrorists are often a germane topic for wargaming discussions, as they often figure in modern conflict.

3. Balance

I've had a few people write me recently to complain that they perceive the forum as 'unbalanced', and even to suggest that new forum members should be recruited to bolster 'the other side'.

I don't think TMP should be in the business of 'balancing' anything. Our job is to provide clear forum rules, and everything else will sort itself out.

Personal logo Florida Tory Supporting Member of TMP14 Jan 2022 9:15 a.m. PST

Well said.

Rick

Personal logo deadhead Supporting Member of TMP14 Jan 2022 9:34 a.m. PST

Today's terrorist, tomorrow's freedom fighter. When the man who would later become Col Fabien killed a German officer in 1941 in Barbès-Rochechouart metro station in occupied Paris, he was breaking international law. He was out of any uniform, he killed (in cold blood) a naval officer of a country with whom France had signed an Armistice (and of course this prompted savage reprisals by the occupiers).

He is a hero of the Resistance. He was on our side.

Russia seems to honour its veterans (of the Great Patriotic War anyway) but I do not know whether that turns into any practical support in their old age. Must say I cannot recall anyone saying veterans were beyond criticism or above the law. But I do feel we owe them a huge debt and frequently fail to honour that.

Personal logo Mserafin Supporting Member of TMP14 Jan 2022 9:40 a.m. PST

According to Clausewitz, war is the continuation of policy (or politics) by other means, so clearly we have to shut down all the historical boards.

Grattan54 Supporting Member of TMP14 Jan 2022 10:29 a.m. PST

I think in the context of how we discuss terrorism here on TMP it is fine. Mostly terrorism comes up in the form a military discussion not so much political.

Korvessa14 Jan 2022 12:58 p.m. PST

I personally have a soft space in my heart for veterans.
Especially combat veterans.
I have many ancestors that fought in the wars, dating back to the ARW.

To me anyway, it seems like too many people blame the local soldier for National Policy, because they are easy targets. But are quite content to accept the fruits of their sacrifice without batting an eye.

Stryderg14 Jan 2022 1:27 p.m. PST

No one has ever explained to me the benefits of "balance", except in the case of walking, running or riding a bike (those are pretty obvious).

Legion 414 Jan 2022 5:21 p.m. PST

I suppose it's controversial today whether veterans deserve any special respect – some say they are just doing a job, others say only Americans have this love of veterans. Personally, I like veterans. I never served, but both of my fathers served in WWII (one was a Marine), and my great-grandfather fought for the Union in the Civil War.

However, it's been suggested that veterans are above criticism, or that disagreeing with a veteran is the same as disparaging him. That seems silly to me. Veterans are still human beings, they can be right or wrong, we don't need to turn them into saints beyond criticism.

I think it depends on who is saying what. But much of what you say here is true. If someone has a beef with Vets that is their problem …

As far as Terrorists, the current crop like AQ or ISIS and their supporters … should be terminated with extreme prejudice. At every possible chance, in large numbers.

Long Valley Gamer Supporting Member of TMP14 Jan 2022 7:12 p.m. PST

When I came back from Vietnam I was not treated with "thank you for your service" Neither was most others. Granted it was an unpopular war but 50,000 Americans gave their lives in that conflict. They didn't set policy…they did what they were ordered to do. They were all patriots in the true sense of the word.
Today our military is made up of volunteers. Men and women who willingly go into battle for this country and sacrifice their lives and their limbs. They should be revered for they are the wall between us and our countries enemies.
IMO, everyone should give back something to their country whether its military or a peace corps type of service. Even helping the poor in this country for a few years. Maybe if that was the case there would be less of a divide where people shared a similar service for the betterment of their fellow man and their country.
Sorry for the rant but too many people today don't realize the greatness of this country even with all its blemishes and how it represents a beacon of freedom in the world.

Korvessa14 Jan 2022 7:47 p.m. PST

Legion 4
Regarding your last line (I don't know how to quote)
I couldn't agree more.

Stryderg14 Jan 2022 9:04 p.m. PST

You add a quote with a "less than" q "greater than"
< q > quote the text here < / q >

I added spaces so the site wouldn't think I was quoting.

Porthos15 Jan 2022 3:41 a.m. PST

"others say only Americans have this love of veterans"

I quite simply do no understand and certainly do not agree with that. Perhaps those who put this nonsense in public should look for instance here: veteranendag.nl

This is a Dutch site, telling how we love not only our own veterans (from a lot of UN operations and lately from serving in Afghanistan) but also those who have liberated us in 1944/1945 (British, Canadians and – of course – Americans).

Legion 415 Jan 2022 6:47 a.m. PST

Legion 4
Regarding your last line (I don't know how to quote)
I couldn't agree more.

You mean this line ?

As far as Terrorists, the current crop like AQ or ISIS and their supporters … should be terminated with extreme prejudice. At every possible chance, in large numbers.

IMO how could anyone, unless you are a jihadi terrorist or their supporters think otherwise ? Why they became a jihadi terrorist or support them … matters not. If they are trying to kill you, your troops and of course innocent civilians … They are nothing but targets to be serviced … IMO …

And yes Stryderg showed how to do a quote … < q > in front of the quote … and < / q > at the end. Just no spaces between the symbols and the letter q … 👍👍😎

Legion 415 Jan 2022 7:02 a.m. PST

To me anyway, it seems like too many people blame the local soldier for National Policy, because they are easy targets. But are quite content to accept the fruits of their sacrifice without batting an eye.
Yes, this was rampant during & after Vietnam. Even as an ROTC Cadet, '75-'79, if you were in any uniform, you also got some of this "treatment". Hitler salutes, the middle finger/the bird, name calling of all types, etc.

Of course we could do nothing about it. And more than once a senior cadet had to order me to "stand down" as I moved toward those making the comments. Which was the right thing do.

This anti-military "treatment" happens very rarely today. But last I heard a pole taken says about 10% of Americans have a negative opinion of the US Military. And I'd imagine Vets as well ? So … Bleeped text'm !

However, it's been suggested that veterans are above criticism, or that disagreeing with a veteran is the same as disparaging him. That seems silly to me.
Yes again I agree … But as I found out sometimes saying you were a Vet and said something that some others thought otherwise. I was attacked, etc. … and to my surprise many were from the UK. huh? Don't get me wrong most from the UK don't do this … But that was my experience. I respect my UK Allies greatly …

OK … Yeah … I forgave them for burning down the WH during the War of 1812. evil grin

But also some Americans were "negative" to my and other Vets comments as well. Not to paint with a broad brush, and I could be wrong, but some were "intellectual academics". That sort of thing is going on in many universities, etc., today in the USA. But everybody is allowed to have an opinion … That includes me too ! 😮😁

Veterans are still human beings, they can be right or wrong, we don't need to turn them into saints beyond criticism.
Of course, and I can assure you none of my comrades nor I would be up for sainthood … 😇

I don't think TMP should be in the business of 'balancing' anything
Again agree … Who and where would you find these for the "other side" … whatever that is ? 🤔

Long Valley Gamer – Thank you for your service … And welcome home … 👍👍 Plus I agree with all you posted.

14Bore15 Jan 2022 8:35 a.m. PST

Well put Bill.
If veterans were above reproach we wouldn't be able to criticize generals battles.
Terrorist titles seems to be tossed around to much, not really following its real meaning.

machinehead Supporting Member of TMP15 Jan 2022 10:46 a.m. PST

Legion 4, I never had that problem. A month after I got out (1977) I was in an art school where no one ever put me down for having been in the military. My second year there I went to a school Halloween party in my dress greens and my shoulder length hair cut to military length and no problems there either.

Legion 415 Jan 2022 2:59 p.m. PST

What can I tell you ? My experiences were different than yours … I'm not making anything up. It may have been a long time ago. But most of those incidents stick out in my mind.

But you ETS'd, we were just going thru ROTC. And at times wore our uniforms on campus. As far as they were concerned I guess, we were in inform and that made us "bad" somehow. Of course, not everybody treated us negatively, most didn't seem to notice or care. It always is a vocal few …

Korvessa15 Jan 2022 6:12 p.m. PST

I went through ROTC in a fairly liberal town 1984-1986.
I don't recall anything special.
But our officers had stories from the late 70s that weren't as nice.

doc mcb15 Jan 2022 6:37 p.m. PST

Terrorists are fairly easily defined: they target non-combatants in order to create fear and attack an enemy's will to resist.

During WWII, bombing aimed at factories was not terroristic; bombing aimed at population centers was.

Sherman's march was an act of terror. The Russian "scorched earth" strategy against invaders was not.

John Brown's execution of five pro-slavery settlers at Pottawatomie was an act of terror; his siezure of Harpers Ferry with the intent to ignite a slave revolt was not.

The bombing of the Marine barracks, or the COLE, was not an act of terror; the destruction of the Twin Towers on 9/11 was an act of terror.

It is not a tactic, it is a matter of intent.

Terrorism is, by the standards of the Just War Doctrine, intrinsically unjust. That said, it may be possible to justify terror as a weapon when the alternatives are even worse. This may be true of Sherman and Hiroshima, for example.

doc mcb15 Jan 2022 6:42 p.m. PST

As to veterans, I would fault only criticism of them AS VETERANS, i.e. criticism of the fact that they served. Otherwise they are as fairly criticized as anyone else.

doc mcb15 Jan 2022 6:44 p.m. PST

As to balance, totally agree with Bill; open debate will balance itself.

Legion 416 Jan 2022 12:49 p.m. PST

AS VETERANS, i.e. criticism of the fact that they served. Otherwise they are as fairly criticized as anyone else.
Yes, that is generally true … regardless bias may also play a part.

Dn Jackson Supporting Member of TMP17 Jan 2022 7:08 a.m. PST

"However, it's been suggested that veterans are above criticism, or that disagreeing with a veteran is the same as disparaging him. That seems silly to me. Veterans are still human beings, they can be right or wrong, we don't need to turn them into saints beyond criticism."

This is an odd attitude to have Bill. After all, I'm a veteran and I'm always right. :-)

Legion 417 Jan 2022 8:20 a.m. PST

Me too !!!! Me Too !!! 😃

Dragon Gunner17 Jan 2022 11:31 p.m. PST

"disagreeing with a veteran is the same as disparaging him."

1. There is disagreement and then there are personal attacks.

2. If you want to disagree have something to offer other than your emotion induced opinions. Be prepared to debate the subject and not have a meltdown and resort to personal attacks when your position cannot stand on its own merit…

3. Playing with toy soldiers, reading books and watching Hollywood movies does not trump actual real life experience on certain subject matters…

4. Your cousin Bob might have served that does not make you an expert.

hornblaeser18 Jan 2022 7:21 a.m. PST

Personally i think veterans, should be supported, as they are often ill as a result of their job.
It quite another discussion of wether the wars or deployment were just.
Supporting them with their problems is a duty. But of course veterans can be idiots as any other human, but that is another discussion.

hornblaeser18 Jan 2022 7:23 a.m. PST

DocMB that is good description of terrorism. It nice when people makes a lear distinction.

Legion 418 Jan 2022 10:13 a.m. PST

Dragon Gunner +10 !

Personally i think veterans, should be supported, as they are often ill as a result of their job.
It quite another discussion of wether the wars or deployment were just.
Supporting them with their problems is a duty
thumbs up

veterans can be idiots as any other human, but that is another discussion.
It's part of the "human condition" … being an idiot, moron, jerk, Bleeped text, etc. And Vets are human. Well … most are … 😁

Personal logo deadhead Supporting Member of TMP18 Jan 2022 2:13 p.m. PST

Veterans must inevitably be a mixture of the society that they come from, whether saints or sinners, heroes or cowards (or wise folk who just keep their heads down), psychopathic murderers or Red Cross.

The horrors of war might later shift them in a bad direction, but, in my experience, most, to this day, come home and simply bottle it up. (That is so frustrating. My wife's grandfather told me so little about Dunkirk, N Africa, and three years in a prison camp, however much I asked)

As a kid with shoulder length hair in 1971 (actually by then it was well beyond that length) I was against the VN War, because the best looking girls here expected that, I was lucky enough to be few thousand miles away and most US citizens seem to feel the same way.

But the real reason was because they were not winning the war strategically. Tarawa, Saipan, Iwo J, Okinawa, at least they were getting somewhere.

But I never failed to respect those who had served. The snag was, 6 months in Michigan U of, I met several who had….and guess what? They would not talk about it "You would not be interested".

My contempt is for those who claimed to have served, the "feigned valour" which is a massive issue rarely addressed………

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