Can You Support the Troops on Veterans Day Without Condoning Imperialism?

Yesterday was Veterans Day, and I have mixed feelings about how it was (or was not) observed. On one hand, you have a large group of Americans who automatically “support the troops” on Veterans Day (often without any real substance to their appreciation) because not to do so is considered unpatriotic, and, to these people, supporting the troops and supporting foreign wars and the current administration go hand in hand. You’ve probably seen the bumper stickers— “Support the Troops and Our President.” Many Americans feel like you are not truly supporting the troops if you don’t also unequivocally support the international military apparatus we use to patrol the world for “our safety.” This sentiment rings false to me, and I think it deadens true patriotism—which is a love for what’s right for your country even when your country isn’t doing what’s right.

And then on the other (left) hand, there are a number of people (like this guy) who make no bones about their hatred for our militaristic interventionism and unwittingly lump the troops into the same category with America’s international policy makers—as if the troops on the ground were actually part of the decision process. This also rings false to me. It is likely that these same malcontents would argue with police officers about unjust laws. The officers and the troops are there to enforce policies and laws that are handed down to them. They are trained to do as they are told, and most of them do that well and honorably. If there is a problem, it lies with the legislators and decision brokers, most of whom want a free ride on the general good will the public affords to soldiers and police. Hating on soldiers and police officers is not just ungrateful and mean-spirited, it is also stupid.

Just so no one gets me wrong, though they will anyway, I want to say up front that I really do appreciate the fact that soldiers put their lives on the line. If it were strictly confined to thanking the members of the military for their service, Veterans Day would be an unadulterated joy to me. I appreciate the culture of discipline and self-sacrifice that pervades the military. I have many friends in the military, and I could not do what they do. I am a weak person without the will or the wherewithall to make a living as a soldier. I wish honestly that I had been allowed to celebrate Veterans Day in 1783 or 1945. That would have been an unmixed happiness for me.

All that said, I hate what our military is currently being used to accomplish in the world, so observing Veterans Day is a strangely ambivalent exercise for me. I don’t criticize the soldiers for our foreign policy, but I don’t condone our foreign policy for the sake of our soldiers either. I want them home in almost every case, and I want America to stop being an international military presence. Is it necessarily the case that criticizing the use of our troops in foreign lands is the same as criticizing the troops themselves? I don’t think so, though many people on the left and the right can’t seem to understand this distinction.

And does this mean I am isolationistic? Or that I have an “extremist” foreign policy? No. I am a non-interventionist. Which means I think countries should abide by the Golden Rule. No matter your international leverage or military might, you should do unto other countries as you would have them do unto you. Don’t want to be invaded? Don’t want foreign drones killing people within your borders without trial or due process? Don’t want military force used to change your system of government? Well then don’t do that to other countries. Instead, use diplomacy and international trade agreements to make your opinions clear, trusting that ultimately it is in God’s hands what a distinct and sovereign foreign government decides to do within its borders. Unless you are literally being attacked, your military need never see active service. Keep them trained, and prepare them well for domestic defense, but don’t spill a drop of their blood for any other purpose than the safety of the citizens and country they are sworn to protect.

I know many of us think there are extenuating circumstances to our foreign military activities. Many people think that foreign wars are necessary to stamp out terrorism. So foreign wars, in their minds, are actually for our domestic safety. I just don’t buy this argument. It would obviously take many more words to prove that this is not the case. These things are always more complicated than it seems on the surface. But the bottom line is that it would warm my heart if I believed that our country were erring on the side of caution and justice in these matters.

But we have our “killingest” president ever, and our recently exposed international dragnet indicates to me that our international policy is antagonistic by default. We are no longer an international bastion of freedom and peace. We have become (rightly or wrongly as the case may be) the international bogeyman—a coercive hegemonic bully. And we have neither the financial capacity or international goodwill to continue doing this forever. In fact, our time may be far more limited than anyone realizes.

If we really wanted to support the troops on Veterans Day (or any other day), we would stop wasting their precious lives on unjust wars and international interventionism. And we would more loudly and actively combat the tyrannical policies that put our men at arms fruitlessly and needlessly in harm’s way.

33 responses

  1. I, for one, will support all of our Military Members 24/7/365, not on just a few days a year. Who ever thinks it’s okay to just praise Military Personnel a few days a year are all irresponsible individuals. It would be nice if all Citizens would realize AND remember that our Troops, all of them, are on duty and on call 24 hours a day all year long. Maybe they do work at a position for 40 hours a week, but believe me, they are subject to Mobility Alerts any time the Military desires and there is no “Hell No I Won’t Go” when Mobility calls. You see, I use to be in the Military. First I was drafted in 1953 for U.S. Army duty for Korea Basic Training, 16 weeks, at Camp Chaffee, Arkansas. I was Honorably Discharged from the Army in 1956 and then Enlisted in the U.S. Air Force. I stayed in the Air Force for a total Active Duty time of 20 years, 1 Month and 14 Days, as you can see I know what I am talking about. I retired from the Air Force in 1973, but with all due respect, I am still a Military man and will always be ready to fight for this great Country of ours, “until death do us part”. I love this Nation of ours and hope you do also. Thank you for your time. God Bless America, it’s Citizens, AND it’s Military Personnel, all of them. TSgt., USAF Retired.

    • Sure enough, sounds like you are the perfect brainwashed airman, Unquestioning loyalty no matter how corrupt and fraudulent Uncle Fraud has become. You are just a simple man and have no ability to think outside the box that you’ve constructed for yourself. There is no honor in not being able to think for yourself. Little difference between you and a robot. You get programmed and you follow your program. Nothing is going to change that.

  2. Michael Minkoff: “If we really wanted to support the troops on Veterans Day (or any other day), we would stop wasting their precious lives on unjust wars and international interventionism. And we would more loudly and actively combat the tyrannical policies that put our men at arms fruitlessly and needlessly in harm’s way.”

    I wholeheartedly agree and so did Luther Martin and John Quincy Adams:

    “…The power to declare war is a serious responsibility. Why were the framers so vague in defining the parameters of war and the
    conditions under which it could be declared? Section 8, Clause 11 is the only place of significance where warfare is mentioned in the
    Constitution. Little wonder this power has been abused. Luther Martin [one of Maryland’s delegates to the Constitutional Convention]

    ‘…the congress have also a power given them to raise and support armies, without any limitation as to numbers, and without any restriction in time of peace. Thus, sir, this plan of government, instead of guarding against a standing army, that engine of arbitrary power, which has so often and so successfully been used for the subversion of freedom, has in its formation given it an express and constitutional sanction….’40

    “John Quincy Adams predicted the consequences of America’s international military entanglements:

    “America … has abstained from interference in the concerns of others, even when the conflict has been for principles to which she clings…. Wherever the standard of freedom and independence has been or shall be unfurled, there will her heart, her benedictions, and her prayers be. But she goes not abroad in search of monsters to destroy.… She well knows that by once enlisting under other banners than her own, were they even the banners of foreign independence, she would involve herself beyond the power of extrication, in all the wars of interest and intrigue, of individual avarice, envy and ambition, which assume the colors, and usurp the standard of freedom. The fundamental maxims of her policy would insensibly change from liberty to force; the frontlet on her brow would no longer beam with the ineffable splendor of freedom and independence; but in its stead would soon be substituted an imperial diadem, flashing in false and tarnished luster, the murky radiance of dominion and power. She might become the
    dictatress of the world: she would be no longer the ruler of her own spirit.’41

    “Because the framers provided no Biblical parameters, unbiblical warfare has been the rule ever since….”

    For more, see online Chapter 4 “Article 1: Legislative Usurpation” of “Bible Law vs. the United States Constitution: The Christian
    Perspective.” Click on my name, then our website. Go to our Online Books page, click on the top entry, and scroll down to Chapter 4.


  3. I don’t have problems with Veteran’s Day because my family has a lot of veterans in it.
    One of my ancestors was at Valley Forge during the Revolutionary War.
    My great-uncle was a chaplain in WWI who died after delivering supplies to the front.
    My maternal grandfather was a landing craft mechanic in WWII who would have died if we hadn’t dropped the bomb.
    My paternal grandfather was a drill sergeant during the Korean War and apparently so good at his job that they refused his requests to be sent to the front.
    My father was an Air Force meteorologist who spent the first several years of my life in South Korea.

    • And a lot of self absorbed, pro-regressive, communist libretards that are embracing everything True Americans fought against.

      • It should be mandatory to serve in the Military to get any government job.

        Those who SERVE THEIR COUNTRY get the choice jobs, those who do not get the garbage jobs.

        Everybody should also be required to pass a test on the Constitution by 96% or better. The test to be created, and scored by Hillsdale College Professors or post grad students of the institution.

    • I don’t support the troops. They should know by now (despite all the marketing and advertising that being in the military is NOT “cool”, an “adventure”, more than a job, blah, blah, blah) that they are simply being used as tools to extract money from Americans and transfer it to the defense complex. Each soldier, marine, airman, is a consumer of military equipment, hardware etc. The more military consumers we have the more you can suck from the private sector. At what point during a persons military career do they begin to understand their role? They aren’t fighting for Americans, liberty, freedom etc. They are simply a justification for the redistribution of wealth. The weapons of mass destruction lie cost Americans 100s of billions and the kill them in Afghanistan before they come over here lie (while we have a completely porous southern border) is costing 100s of billions more.

      There is NOTHING honorable about supporting lies from government. Anybody can be duped but for chrissake, to stay duped for an entire career? AND NEVER WAKE UP?!!

      Moreover, we have SOOOOOO many millions employed by the Military Defense Complex you practically have a majority defending the waste involved in it. Its self-sustaining now and it will never shrink.

        • You have anything to back that up besides your own personal prejudice? Obviously not. CrustyOldGeezer means you are some old brainwashed veteran that MUST think his service was for freedom and liberty, otherwise you wouldn’t be able to live with yourself. Isn’t that special?

          • More time not thinking?

            I’m not impressed with your lack of coherent thought patterns.

            But, then again, it is impossible to underestimate a brainwashed, brain-dead , low information liberal voter.

            No matter how low you set your expectations, they pop under without mussing a hair on their tiny little heads.

          • More time spouting worthless, unbacked opinions. You must be really proud of yourself, sort of like your service towards a fraudulent, corrupt government.

            Would I care if you were impressed? You seem to worship your very own opinion which is ironic. Almost every thought you have is faith based. A complete void of reason and logic.

          • No child, you misunderstand.

            I’m not here for any purpose beyond giving you an opportunity to prove the level of intelligence you possess.

            So far you are doing well.

            BTW-FYI. we have all studied alinskys rule for fools and recognize their poor implementations immediately and enjoy a fresh fool on occasion.

            Have a nice day childish minded little person.

          • Thanks for confirming my suspicions. Testy response indicates I hit the spot. How long were you a tool of the state? More than likely a retiree which means a highly conditioned fool, unable to form an opinion of his own. Conformity is the key to success as a mindless, conditioned lifer. I see you’ve acquired that…in spades.

          • Nothing ‘testy’ in my response.

            If you are looking for more than mirth at your expense, you will need to search elsewhere.

            You have put zero conscience thought into your position.

            I am just merely leading you into proving your value to Society as a whole equals your intellectual capabilities.

            Please continue. We all need a good laugh on occasion.

            oh…. what is a ‘tool of the state’?

            And also, several of us are wondering what your favorite foreign language might be?

          • Nothing “testy” in your response? And there you have it, your OPINION ranked according to your whim.

            ARE YOU CAPABLE of anything more than lackluster, poorly conceived opinion?

            What the f&ck do you mean, “several of us”? There is just you and your former career as a lifer. You don’t have a blog anywhere, you liar, where you discuss comments from articles. You are morally bereft, not worth my contempt. Were there to be others, LIAR, they would have offered comment, and there has been none. Perhaps you have a little fan club but the weak minded can’t muster anything more than a vote due to your prompting? F&ck off, you are a worm that has been eating the dirt of your superiors for so long, you have no mind left.

          • Do you seriously believe that everything that transpires here appears here?

            “Former career as a lifer”?

            And pray tell, a “lifer” at what career exactly?

            And the language you seem to prefer is better suited to a pathetic gutter snipe.

            Just more proof that you have the intelligence of a pathetic loser with no hope of ever crawling out of the intellectual gutter you find yourself in.

            oh, and to your last comment?

            I AM the Superior that you live in fear of child.

          • Nice tactic of constantly repeating a lie, a mantra that might convert it into a truth? Its a favorite liberal tactic and one Obomit likes to promote. It appears you love the same tactic.

            Stop playing with yourself while your lying. Its deviant behavior.

          • Poor uneducated little fool.

            You blame everything on the military industrial industry without fully understanding the issues you seem to want to rail against.

            But when it is gently pointed out to you that perhaps you were lacking in education of your chosen tirade, you felt the need to attack me.

            All I am is the messenger of doom for your idiotic position.

            You call me a ‘liar’ without once listing any specific ‘lie’ that you claim I have made.

            You made the unwarranted attacks on me without provocation or excuse.

            And you think I’m the troll?

            How foolish you have become.

          • uneducated fool? As per your vaunted opinion again?

            I blame what specifically, you jackass, on the military industrial complex? Can you once, JUST ONCE, make a whole opinion so that I don’t have to read your mind as to what it is you want to point out.

            And that’s the whole gist here. You constantly want to remind me about my inferiority, when you yourself can’t form a whole opinion. You are such a POS, that it defies belief.

            Jackass, with vaunted education, F&&&&&CCCCK YOU, go back to school and learn how to communicate FIRST before you start lying about how others are uneducated.

            Now get your little cadre of uneducated morons, imbeciles and idiots to give you a thumbs up for being illiterate.

          • Interesting tirade.

            And still trying valiantly to not use foul language and childish rants to support you position.

            How mature of you.

  4. HE—l ! I support our troops AND OUR IMPERIALISM! Who would you rather influence world affairs , the Russians or the Iranians?

  5. If you really care about the troops you would want to send them to unnecessary wars where they get killed or maimed.
    Oh yes, many of our veterans are homeless and living miserable lives with little hope of ever leading a normal life.
    The war will cost us about $4,000,000,000,000, including their unceasing health care. that these warriors deserve,
    They sacrifice their lives for what, war profits?

  6. From among the 9 million members of the armed forces who served during the Vietnam Era, a little more than 58,000 were killed in the war. Since then, the United States Government has killed roughly 500,000 through programs to deny them jobs with the federal civil service and federal contractors, delay approval of medical treatment until curable diseases turn into fatal ones, provide pensions to destitute veterans so small that the veteran becomes homeless and dies in the streets, and publicize conditions like PTSD and substance abuse in a way to deter employers from hiring any veterans, including all 80% who have none of these conditions. For successfully killing off veterans to save the government money for the benefits which veterans legally earned through their service, employees of the DVA receive merit bonuses running into tens of thousands of dollars each year. When veterans try to have their rights to employment without discrimination enforced the courts, they are told that the judges have no jurisdiction to do this. Their civil right to trial by jury is thereby violated with the permission of Congress. They must take their complaints to the U.S. Department of Labor, which assists employers to implement discriminatory practices to keep keep veterans from being hired. After World War II, Nazis who committed mass murder were hanged. It is time for the United States to start prosecuting those behind the programs for exterminating veterans to steal their legal benefits. This had better be done to protect our youngest veterans before they face extermination like the veterans who went before them.

  7. War is Hell is a true statement. When American Military are called to duty, they obey. The main thing is that Americans do NOT stay in a foreign land to “conquer” but to fight, win and help to rebuild. Japan is a good example of this statement. Americans helped to rebuild and got the hell out. They did not take over Japan and make it a part of the United States. Big difference with some other countries who get greedy and want to totally control the country they have just fought. Under the present administration, it appears that our Military Personnel are being “used.” Returning body bags are expected! Now, all the rules about calling the enemy what they really are and demanding Jesus not be mentioned by the Chaplains. This administration is one of the deadliest; using American Military for pawns. When American Military forces/Officers are demoted or “fired,” there is something amok with this administration. Why on earth would Litmus tests be administered to officers who would never fire on their American Citizens! Obama is supposed to be Commander in Chief but I will wager that he is Commander of Death to the American Military!!!

  8. I believe the concept of Veterans Day has been lost, or at least distorted, in this era of a volunteer military and the “War on Terrorism”. It’s really simple – Veterans Day is a time for remembering those who served in the PAST, not those currently in the armed forces. Also, it is not a holiday steeped in politics. Rather, it is a day to honor those who have previously served, regardless of their personal feelings (or ours). We seem to forget that those who fought in Vietnam, Korea, and the World Wars were not there by choice, as the military was primarily constituted of conscripted servicemen. They performed a duty for their country with little thought as to political intent. They were NOT automatons – they simply did what was asked of them. We do them a dishonor by shouldering them with any further burdens.

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