Scoop Reader Opinion: U.S. Infantry Vet Responds
Mr. Valenzuela, Mr Editor,
On "Worker Bees and Soldier Ants: America’s Army of Fascism", you wrote:
"...believing every word uttered or image manipulated, absorbing as truth blatant lies and incorporating into their own thought processes the vitriol-filled, hate-induced, xenophobic-spewing, gay-bashing, women-hating, Arab-scapegoating, jingoistic-packed diatribe that litters the airwaves and acts as a conduit for the further recruitment of grunts comprising the army of fascism."
I vote pro-gay, one of my best buds is Bi, I love to travel and learn about different cultures, I *like* women and have had successful, mutually fulfilling relationships with them.
I am also a veteran of the US Army, circa 1988, and my sister is currently serving as a Combat Medic on active duty. I was an Infantryman, which is what grunt means - that is, a grunt is an Infantryman. Tankers, artillerymen, and all other specialities ahve their own nicnames for themselves and would resent being called a grunt. It is obvious you have never actually *met* the common US soldier. You would be very surprised if you did so, but I recommend you don't insult them in person as you obviously do behind your PC.
And I would just like to say that according to Webster's online (http://www.m-w.com/cgi-bin/dictionary?book=Dictionary&va=jingoism&x=0&y=0) the jingoism is in your article, not the training I or my sister received.
The Army teaches its soldiers to accept diversity, to respect the cultural and ethnic mores of those it comes in contact with. The actions of LTC Hughes when entering Najaf at the request of a local cleric, to protect a mosque. When the crowd misunderstood his mission and protested, LTC Hughes ordered his men to stop and kneel, pointing their weapons at the ground, as a gesture not only that the unit was stopping, but as a gesture of respect for their concerns.
But, if you were objective, you'd have recalled that. That you didn't might open you up to the accusation of "jingoism". Let's see what Mirriam-Webster has to say on that word:
Main Entry: jin•go•ism Pronunciation: 'ji[ng]-(")gO-"i-z&m Function: noun : extreme chauvinism or nationalism marked especially by a belligerent foreign policy
Hmmm... I can't imagine why I might think you guilty of jingoism, especially with such a well researched, well documented article. It's clear you spent a great deal of time learning the difference between the common soldier you so easily slander and the political leadership that sends them in harm's way.
Interestingly, in the 1960s & 70s, many people in the US had difficulty making that distinction. They called soldiers "baby killers" as they got off airliners coming home from Viet Nam. That they did so without any knowledge of that soldier's specific actions served only to make the accusation all the more cruel.
Now, having established your credibility, or, rather, the singular *lack* of it, your research ability (ditto), and your level of compassion for people you have enver met engaged in an activity you did no research on, why in the world are you posting articles on the internet. I could learn more, factual information from Dan Rather. And I don't like him, either.
As for Scoop, by publishing this article, which, by Western journalistic standards isn't an article at all but an editorial at best and a rabid rant at worst, Scoop shows it's agenda. Agendas and news are mutually exclusive. Any *reputable* journalist knows that. Scoop has merely established an age old theory as fact.
What age old theory? Glad you asked.
Scoop has proved that it's true that if one could place an infinate number of monkeys before a similarly infinate number of typewriters, one has a great a chance of getting the collected works of Shakespeare as one does garbage. And Scoop ain't Shakespeare.
Scott Hann - Veteran, Private First Class, late of C Co, 1st Battalion, 15th US Infantry (Can Do!)