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Thread: I support the peeing Marines

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    Re: I support the peeing Marines

    Quote Originally Posted by USMC0369 View Post
    And now we see the two extremes.

    On the one side we have people wanting to give these guys a medal and talking about how much worse they would have treated the enemy dead. And on the other we have... this. Castration? Traitors? Hyperbole.

    I had thought my melodrama meter couldn't get pegged any further than the guy who spouted all those tired, cliche' lines about "the arena" and what it means to be a "warrior". It appears I was wrong.
    Intentionally a bit exaggerated to express a point, pretty much the definition of hyperbole. I see this issue from a "Golden Rule" perspective which simply does not mean we take actions in reaction to how we've been treated but to how we would like them to treat us. It's a distinction that to me is quite important. To drag up the "We don't know what they've been through" and all of that garbage rationalization doesn't pass the common sense test of how we (should) want every other person in the world to perceive our own military. It's already an uphill battle to defend our own (admittedly very flawed) foreign policy as anything other than the US trying to become the new Rome or Fourth Reich as it is, seeing our bottom 5% tier representatives like these idiots acting like barbarians sets us back that much further. Quite frankly, I'll go the lengths of applauding this administration for any and every means they go through to make an example of these four and sending a bold and clear message that these actions will not be tolerated from people representing our nation abroad.
    "The two enemies of the people are criminals and government, so let us tie the second down with the chains of the Constitution so the second will not become the legalized version of the first." ~ Thomas Jefferson

    It will be of little avail to the people that the laws are made by men of their own choice if the laws be so voluminous that they cannot be read, or so incoherent that they cannot be understood.
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    Re: I support the peeing Marines

    Quote Originally Posted by AJBIGJ View Post
    Intentionally a bit exaggerated to express a point, pretty much the definition of hyperbole. I see this issue from a "Golden Rule" perspective which simply does not mean we take actions in reaction to how we've been treated but to how we would like them to treat us. It's a distinction that to me is quite important. To drag up the "We don't know what they've been through" and all of that garbage rationalization doesn't pass the common sense test of how we (should) want every other person in the world to perceive our own military. It's already an uphill battle to defend our own (admittedly very flawed) foreign policy as anything other than the US trying to become the new Rome or Fourth Reich as it is, seeing our bottom 5% tier representatives like these idiots acting like barbarians sets us back that much further. Quite frankly, I'll go the lengths of applauding this administration for any and every means they go through to make an example of these four and sending a bold and clear message that these actions will not be tolerated from people representing our nation abroad.
    A much more measured response than the first. The Golden Rule can be tricky in combat, as the objective is to kill each other. If I were to treat my enemy the way I wish to be treated, I probably wouldn't shoot them so much. Still, I understand what you're saying. If I fall, I would hope my body would be treated with respect. The strategic implications of this action are not lost on me either.

    As I said in the other thread about this topic, I won't defend the actions of these Marines, and I'm not the guy who says "If you haven't been there, you need to shut up". Not my style.

    That being said, experience does have the benefit of providing perspective. I was still a teenager when I experienced my first firefight. Afterward, I was still incredibly amped up, and the emotions came quickly and intensely. Without even consciously thinking about it, I had stepped entirely outside of my normal headspace. Bragging about kills, laughing at the dead, playing up the machismo that we had been taught was expected in situations like this. I suppose it's a coping mechanism; helps dampen the extreme fear and insecurity that comes with near death or extreme violence.

    Nobody I've served with has ever done anything disgraceful to enemy dead or prisoners. I've since learned to train myself and my Marines to understand what goes on both physically and psychologically when these types of events take place, and I don't tolerate the typical grandstanding or braggadocio that normally accompanies men in this line of work. I try my best to train my Marines to the point where emotions are out of the equation entirely.

    Doesn't mean I don't understand what those guys were (or weren't) thinking about when they did what they did. To see the event in a vacuum, without any context, makes them look like callous monsters. When I see it, I see immaturity and the lack of proper training or leadership. Not good things, but not irredeemable either.

    Either way, rest assured they will pay for this dearly. They set themselves on the world stage, and they will be judged according to its rules.
    Self-worth and pride only follow demonstrated ability, and all the self-help books in the world won't change that. Mr. Miyagi didn't teach the Karate Kid to believe in himself. He taught him how to kick people in the f*cking head.

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    Re: I support the peeing Marines

    Quote Originally Posted by USMC0369 View Post
    A much more measured response than the first. The Golden Rule can be tricky in combat, as the objective is to kill each other. If I were to treat my enemy the way I wish to be treated, I probably wouldn't shoot them so much. Still, I understand what you're saying. If I fall, I would hope my body would be treated with respect. The strategic implications of this action are not lost on me either.

    As I said in the other thread about this topic, I won't defend the actions of these Marines, and I'm not the guy who says "If you haven't been there, you need to shut up". Not my style.

    That being said, experience does have the benefit of providing perspective. I was still a teenager when I experienced my first firefight. Afterward, I was still incredibly amped up, and the emotions came quickly and intensely. Without even consciously thinking about it, I had stepped entirely outside of my normal headspace. Bragging about kills, laughing at the dead, playing up the machismo that we had been taught was expected in situations like this. I suppose it's a coping mechanism; helps dampen the extreme fear and insecurity that comes with near death or extreme violence.

    Nobody I've served with has ever done anything disgraceful to enemy dead or prisoners. I've since learned to train myself and my Marines to understand what goes on both physically and psychologically when these types of events take place, and I don't tolerate the typical grandstanding or braggadocio that normally accompanies men in this line of work. I try my best to train my Marines to the point where emotions are out of the equation entirely.

    Doesn't mean I don't understand what those guys were (or weren't) thinking about when they did what they did. To see the event in a vacuum, without any context, makes them look like callous monsters. When I see it, I see immaturity and the lack of proper training or leadership. Not good things, but not irredeemable either.

    Either way, rest assured they will pay for this dearly. They set themselves on the world stage, and they will be judged according to its rules.
    I can't say I disagree with any single thing you've stated here. My initial post was intended to directly counter all of the apologists I've been seeing all over the place, in the media, facebook, MT forums, etc. Hence the choice of the use of the writing style you've identified. I don't mind the simple concept people making light of a situation that is undoubtedly quite stressful, I see no problem with that in terms of helping people cope, if it isn't done in such a blatant and very offensive and provocative manner. The difference is what this was, if we factor all the collectivist propaganda and demagoguery out of the conversation and look at this as four individual human beings taking such actions against other individual beings there is never a situation where we should condone or support such behavior.

    Like I've stated before, my biggest concern is the countless, not necessarily innocent, but definitely not so guilty lives being put at risk by making this such a spectacle. I remember the images the beheading videos invoked so many years prior and considering things in hindsight I can imagine how something like this can affect those individuals who are prone to making decisions about whether they will support (or even just not actively resist) our cause there, and that likely amounts to quite a few individuals making that final decision about taking up arms against our cause. While labeling the Marines as "traitors" is in fact a very strong term, considering the second and third degree consequences of these actions were more of a factor of ignorance than maliciousness, the fact that so many human lives are endangered by these negligent actions makes the label far closer to the reality than I would like. I'd place the severity of the long-term consequences of these actions at almost parity with anything Al Awlaki was accused of, and we assassinated him absent due process, even if the intentions weren't quite the same. I have no problem seeing them suffer the wrath of the American Justice system in this particular instance.
    "The two enemies of the people are criminals and government, so let us tie the second down with the chains of the Constitution so the second will not become the legalized version of the first." ~ Thomas Jefferson

    It will be of little avail to the people that the laws are made by men of their own choice if the laws be so voluminous that they cannot be read, or so incoherent that they cannot be understood.
    James Madison

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    Re: I support the peeing Marines

    I find the machismo you speak of not just interesting in Marines, but in the armchair generals. I read "scholarly" articles in Foreign Policy Magazine and the NYT - talking about the GWOT, and a possible strike against Iran - and you can just see the erotic excitement oozing out from between the lines. Like the guy is getting hard just thinking about us bombing Iranians.

    Another case in point - the recent Occupy Wallstreet protests. Why do people who hate "big government" get excited at seeing cops marching around in big, black, and hard riot gear beating the shit out of everybody? Oh, and when a mainstream author writes about our glorious law enforcement macing random teenagers - he doesn't say "cops", he says "police officers", who were just "defending themselves" - again, its like the guy has his other hand down his freakin pants while he's typing.

    /rant off

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    Re: I support the peeing Marines

    Quote Originally Posted by AJBIGJ View Post
    I can't say I disagree with any single thing you've stated here. My initial post was intended to directly counter all of the apologists I've been seeing all over the place, in the media, facebook, MT forums, etc. Hence the choice of the use of the writing style you've identified. I don't mind the simple concept people making light of a situation that is undoubtedly quite stressful, I see no problem with that in terms of helping people cope, if it isn't done in such a blatant and very offensive and provocative manner. The difference is what this was, if we factor all the collectivist propaganda and demagoguery out of the conversation and look at this as four individual human beings taking such actions against other individual beings there is never a situation where we should condone or support such behavior.

    Like I've stated before, my biggest concern is the countless, not necessarily innocent, but definitely not so guilty lives being put at risk by making this such a spectacle. I remember the images the beheading videos invoked so many years prior and considering things in hindsight I can imagine how something like this can affect those individuals who are prone to making decisions about whether they will support (or even just not actively resist) our cause there, and that likely amounts to quite a few individuals making that final decision about taking up arms against our cause. While labeling the Marines as "traitors" is in fact a very strong term, considering the second and third degree consequences of these actions were more of a factor of ignorance than maliciousness, the fact that so many human lives are endangered by these negligent actions makes the label far closer to the reality than I would like. I'd place the severity of the long-term consequences of these actions at almost parity with anything Al Awlaki was accused of, and we assassinated him absent due process, even if the intentions weren't quite the same. I have no problem seeing them suffer the wrath of the American Justice system in this particular instance.
    You are correct: we should not condone the behavior at all. Outrage is more than justified. I do not seek to mitigate the severity of the offense committed here; I only wish to place it in perspective. We're dealing with idiots, not monsters or psychopaths.

    However, I do believe that the effect this will have on the enemy is a bit overstated. The men we're fighting are a rather extreme lot, and their hatred for anything outside of their world view has a tendency to saturate every aspect of their existence. There will be a few who are on the fence, and who may see this and take up arms as a result, but they will be the minority. For most, it's deeply ingrained already.

    Where we stand to lose the most is with the normal folks who aren't going to fight us, but they might not help us either. Those are the ones we have to convince, and we lost a LOT of ground with them as a result of this incident. None of them will kill us, but they'll turn a blind eye to our enemy, and they won't help us hunt that enemy down. The number of lives this will eventually cost is incalculable; there are too many variables. However we can pretty much guarantee that the number of US dead will be higher now than it would have been had this never happened.

    One day those Marines are going to realize that. If they are like I suspect (immature and stupid, not evil), that thought is going to punish them FAR worse than anything the American judicial system could do.
    Self-worth and pride only follow demonstrated ability, and all the self-help books in the world won't change that. Mr. Miyagi didn't teach the Karate Kid to believe in himself. He taught him how to kick people in the f*cking head.

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    Re: I support the peeing Marines

    Quote Originally Posted by Joe Bonham View Post
    I find the machismo you speak of not just interesting in Marines, but in the armchair generals. I read "scholarly" articles in Foreign Policy Magazine and the NYT - talking about the GWOT, and a possible strike against Iran - and you can just see the erotic excitement oozing out from between the lines. Like the guy is getting hard just thinking about us bombing Iranians.

    Another case in point - the recent Occupy Wallstreet protests. Why do people who hate "big government" get excited at seeing cops marching around in big, black, and hard riot gear beating the shit out of everybody? Oh, and when a mainstream author writes about our glorious law enforcement macing random teenagers - he doesn't say "cops", he says "police officers", who were just "defending themselves" - again, its like the guy has his other hand down his freakin pants while he's typing.

    /rant off
    Oh come on!! Now Wild Joker is going to come out and debate you about OWS, and this whole thread will be shot to hell.
    Self-worth and pride only follow demonstrated ability, and all the self-help books in the world won't change that. Mr. Miyagi didn't teach the Karate Kid to believe in himself. He taught him how to kick people in the f*cking head.

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    Re: I support the peeing Marines

    Quote Originally Posted by USMC0369 View Post
    Oh come on!! Now Wild Joker is going to come out and debate you about OWS, and this whole thread will be shot to hell.
    True. Bear in mind we are talking about the guy who thinks "mutation" means if you lose your arm in an IED attack, all of your children will be born with only one arm.

    Quote Originally Posted by USMC0369 View Post
    You are correct: we should not condone the behavior at all. Outrage is more than justified. I do not seek to mitigate the severity of the offense committed here; I only wish to place it in perspective. We're dealing with idiots, not monsters or psychopaths.

    However, I do believe that the effect this will have on the enemy is a bit overstated. The men we're fighting are a rather extreme lot, and their hatred for anything outside of their world view has a tendency to saturate every aspect of their existence. There will be a few who are on the fence, and who may see this and take up arms as a result, but they will be the minority. For most, it's deeply ingrained already.

    Where we stand to lose the most is with the normal folks who aren't going to fight us, but they might not help us either. Those are the ones we have to convince, and we lost a LOT of ground with them as a result of this incident. None of them will kill us, but they'll turn a blind eye to our enemy, and they won't help us hunt that enemy down. The number of lives this will eventually cost is incalculable; there are too many variables. However we can pretty much guarantee that the number of US dead will be higher now than it would have been had this never happened.

    One day those Marines are going to realize that. If they are like I suspect (immature and stupid, not evil), that thought is going to punish them FAR worse than anything the American judicial system could do.
    I agree with everything here - that's what COIN is (supposed to) be all about.

    However, to expand upon your point about the normal people who aren't affiliated either way... turning a blind eye to the enemy is a pretty serious matter - there's an IED in the middle of a neighborhood, everybody who lives there know's about it and will avoid it, but they don't like us and are perfectly content to see an American vehicle roll right over it. You're absolutely right and I'm not disagreeing, just spelling it out a bit more for emphasis.

    And honestly, it doesn't necessarily take a lot to make even a "normal" person to take up arms against us. He doesn't necessarily need to be personally affected by our occupation (like losing a relative), he could start fighting for purely existential reasons, he hears about the villainous Americans and their atrocities against Muslims, and wants to do something about it.

    When the "atrocities" have to be fabricated, that requires more work for the Taliban. They have to come up with a fabrication that's believable, and is a shocking story that will spread quickly. For example I read some years back about a rumor in Iraq that our eye-pro had X-ray vision, so we could see through women's clothing. That may sound silly to us, but for a population that is extremely sensitive about their females, and a bit unfamiliar with science, that story had a signficant impact, and undermined our legitimacy.

    But when somebody does something stupid - like peeing on a dead body, we're doing their work for them. They don't need to make anything up, because the story is true, and there's even a video to go with it.

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    Re: I support the peeing Marines

    Quote Originally Posted by Joe Bonham View Post
    True. Bear in mind we are talking about the guy who thinks "mutation" means if you lose your arm in an IED attack, all of your children will be born with only one arm.
    Stop. You two have had your opportunities to duke it out in several threads already. Christ, I'd like to get the two of you face to face. That way you could fight, fuck, or shut the hell up.

    Quote Originally Posted by Joe Bonham View Post
    I agree with everything here - that's what COIN is (supposed to) be all about.

    However, to expand upon your point about the normal people who aren't affiliated either way... turning a blind eye to the enemy is a pretty serious matter - there's an IED in the middle of a neighborhood, everybody who lives there know's about it and will avoid it, but they don't like us and are perfectly content to see an American vehicle roll right over it. You're absolutely right and I'm not disagreeing, just spelling it out a bit more for emphasis.

    And honestly, it doesn't necessarily take a lot to make even a "normal" person to take up arms against us. He doesn't necessarily need to be personally affected by our occupation (like losing a relative), he could start fighting for purely existential reasons, he hears about the villainous Americans and their atrocities against Muslims, and wants to do something about it.

    When the "atrocities" have to be fabricated, that requires more work for the Taliban. They have to come up with a fabrication that's believable, and is a shocking story that will spread quickly. For example I read some years back about a rumor in Iraq that our eye-pro had X-ray vision, so we could see through women's clothing. That may sound silly to us, but for a population that is extremely sensitive about their females, and a bit unfamiliar with science, that story had a signficant impact, and undermined our legitimacy.

    But when somebody does something stupid - like peeing on a dead body, we're doing their work for them. They don't need to make anything up, because the story is true, and there's even a video to go with it.
    This part I completely agree with, however I would point something out. As you say, this is a culture so Goddamned retarded (shit... I mean misunderstood and out of touch) that they believe that X-Ray glasses are a thing. We may make their job easier when we do stupid shit like this, but only marginally so. I have half a mind right now to head back and do a few magic tricks to make them worship me like a God-King.

    In all seriousness:

    As I said before, eventually these Marines are going to realize that their actions have cost lives, and that thought is going to burrow into their heads for the rest of their lives. Believe me, this will be something they carry with them forever.
    Self-worth and pride only follow demonstrated ability, and all the self-help books in the world won't change that. Mr. Miyagi didn't teach the Karate Kid to believe in himself. He taught him how to kick people in the f*cking head.

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    Re: I support the peeing Marines

    Quote Originally Posted by USMC0369 View Post
    Stop. You two have had your opportunities to duke it out in several threads already. Christ, I'd like to get the two of you face to face. That way you could fight, fuck, or shut the hell up.
    Heh. More than several.
    This part I completely agree with, however I would point something out. As you say, this is a culture so Goddamned retarded (shit... I mean misunderstood and out of touch) that they believe that X-Ray glasses are a thing. We may make their job easier when we do stupid shit like this, but only marginally so. I have half a mind right now to head back and do a few magic tricks to make them worship me like a God-King.
    In all honesty, the blame lies with us. We refuse to learn the language, refuse to learn the culture, because its "inferior", and we all know Muslims worship Satan anyways... if we don't blend in they're going to be hostile, and obvious questions (Like "are your sunglasses really x-ray?) aren't going to get asked. We present ourselves as "holier than thou" foreigners, we're going to be treated as such.

    If I had to pick any one problem with our occupations (and there are MANY), I would say language. I'm not expecting every single ground pounder to know it (I tried, and gave up pretty quick) - but we could at least have made an effort to recruit and school for it. You blunder around a marketplace not understanding the language, you're going to get your ass handed to you real quick.

    In all seriousness:

    As I said before, eventually these Marines are going to realize that their actions have cost lives, and that thought is going to burrow into their heads for the rest of their lives. Believe me, this will be something they carry with them forever.
    Maybe. But the human mind has a way to justify and explain away anything. Hell, half the population is convinced that we really "won" in Vietnam.

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    Senior Member AJBIGJ's Avatar
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    Re: I support the peeing Marines

    Quote Originally Posted by Joe Bonham View Post
    Heh. More than several.

    In all honesty, the blame lies with us. We refuse to learn the language, refuse to learn the culture, because its "inferior", and we all know Muslims worship Satan anyways... if we don't blend in they're going to be hostile, and obvious questions (Like "are your sunglasses really x-ray?) aren't going to get asked. We present ourselves as "holier than thou" foreigners, we're going to be treated as such.

    If I had to pick any one problem with our occupations (and there are MANY), I would say language. I'm not expecting every single ground pounder to know it (I tried, and gave up pretty quick) - but we could at least have made an effort to recruit and school for it. You blunder around a marketplace not understanding the language, you're going to get your ass handed to you real quick.

    Maybe. But the human mind has a way to justify and explain away anything. Hell, half the population is convinced that we really "won" in Vietnam.
    The outlook is becoming quite sad, I tend to wonder sometimes if our current foreign policy has become the new "Manifest Destiny" of the Twenty First century. I tend to have deep concern for our current mindset as I freely acknowledge how quickly the Nazi movement came to full fruition from a place not all so dissimilar to our current situation and the actions taken were being rationalized away by dehumanizing the victims in one form or another. It's important to remember that for every genocidal racist even in that movement there were hundreds if not thousands or millions of apathetic bystanders rationalizing the actions of the few among them away out of a perception of some form of "necessity". It's truly a process of numbing and incremental steps in a direction by the gradual surrendering of core principles. I hope if that day truly ever comes I can find my own way to be one of those who effectively resists that movement and protect the individuals whose liberties we deprive only because of the actions of others who look similar, or believe in a similar religion, or have similar cultural histories. My worst fear is that day of the test of character is closer than we think.
    "The two enemies of the people are criminals and government, so let us tie the second down with the chains of the Constitution so the second will not become the legalized version of the first." ~ Thomas Jefferson

    It will be of little avail to the people that the laws are made by men of their own choice if the laws be so voluminous that they cannot be read, or so incoherent that they cannot be understood.
    James Madison

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