Good News, Everyone!

A lot of people were killed:

But they’ll celebrate, as I do, the Greatest Generation. The one that interned Japanese, nuked Hiroshima and Nagasaki (toddlers are dead, people), firebombed Dresden and Tokyo, invented the flamethrower, Napalm, White Phosphorous, and various and sundry other horrific ways to kill people.

We correctly laud these things as having been necessary in order to protect our United States, but, the fact is, each of these killled many civilians. And we sanctioned it, and have accepted it for decades.

Yes, let us praise the internment of the Japanese and the killing of countless civilians — no regrets Jeans, it’s what all the cool conservatives are wearing nowadays.


Comments: 28


Time to be a geek. The “greatest” generation didn’t invent the flamethrower. The Germans developed it during WW1
in an attempt to break out of the trench stalemate on the western front. That didn’t work which is why the tank was


You missed the last line in the post: “Somewhere, Khomeini is smiling.”

Umm, far as I know, Khomeini is dead. If he isn’t er that’s weird and if he is he’s either 1) Dust and thus incapable of smiling. 2) In heaven with Eighty Virgins which would mean that God approves in him 3) In hell rosting for all eternity. or 4) Reincarnated as quite possibly some Christian Coalition fanatic who plays a fantasy computer game set in New York City where he slaughters the infidels, I mean, unbelievers. OK, then I’d believe he’d be smiling.


God, this is simply obscene. Look, children, there can be NO doubt at this point that something very bad happened in Haditha on that day. Defending something that is utterly indefensible, and claiming to do so in support of the “war effort” is either morally dishonest or completely evil. I’m not sure why someone would line up in support of internment camps and atomic bombs either, so maybe there’s some other explanation I just don’t get.

But then this creepy little bastard vinnie goes on to say:

Such is war.

Oh yeah, ho hum. Shooting children in the head at eyeball range. Just another heroic operation in the war on terrah. We’re fighting them over there so we don’t have to fight them over here. Christ’s tits in a mason jar!! The fact that there are American citizens so callous as to be fully prepared to forgive the worst kind of atrocity just sickens me.

We need to be thinking about the deeper meaning behind Haditha and Abu Ghraib and Bagram and the others we’ll never know about. 2, 3, even FOUR tours of duty, not to fight but merely to occupy. Acting as armed thugs for the neocon mafia. Soul deadening, heart breaking, mind numbing. Don’t forget, friends and neighbors, we’re going to be living with what we’re creating for another sixty years.



Quite frankly, I couldn’t figure out what the poster’s point was; he was all over the map in that one. His commenters, though, made it clear where he and they were coming from. I liked particularly the ones who suggested the Haditha victims might somehow have earned their treatment. How does a two-year old do that, exactly?

Somehow I continue to be amazed at the unabashed lack of humanity these people can display.


Only sixty years? We should be so unlucky to forget this so soon.


We correctly laud these things as having been necessary in order to protect our United States

If “we” means winguts, then I agree completely. Otherwise, however, I, and many others, do NOT “laud these things” or find it “correct” to do so.

Hiroshima and Nagasaki seem more logical viewed through the lenses of “let’s check out our new toys” and “let’s scare the bejeezus out of Joe Stalin”. Only morally impaired folks like Malkin “laud” the locking up of the Japanese (she better hope we don’t get at loggerheads with Manila!…). Only complete assholes “laud” napalm.

White phosphorus certainly seems useful–except when deployed war-criminally on Iraqi urban populations.

The firebombings of Dresden and Tokyo were horrid and regrettable, but were also SOP for that war, on both sides (“factory workers are legitimate targets” sort of mentality). So, this wingnut has made, at most, 1.5 defensible points. What a cobag.


–And not terribly defensible points from a modern and human perspective, let me add.

One more correction: He’s not merely a cobag, he’s a fucking volunteer brownshirt.


The comments section over there is particularly distasteful. Let’s cherry pick some of the dumbest comments:

“Even if some dirty civilians died, I’m not convinced that my give a crap meter should be elevated. It’s war. End of story.”

“The MSM and other assorted dick head leftists have been praying for another My Lai for a long time. Vietnam is widely believed to be their best moments. They’re creaming their jeans hoping it’s true.”

“Where is the uproar for the other sides actions that are MUCH worse than ANYTHING we have done?”

Real geniuses over there.


That made me ill. I’m going to go hide in a closet somewhere and pretend that I’m a member of a species that actually has some claim to humanity.


How does a two-year old do that, exactly?

BWM – Breathing while Muslim (alternately, BWB – Breathing while Brown)

I found this amusing:

Vinnie the tool states: Yes, let’s those of us who weren’t there, and never will be, flagellate ourselves over this, without any charges, or Court Martials even being brought.

In response to: But if, if, even a fraction of it is true, it deserves the most vehement condemnation and most severe punishment.


Otherwise wingnutty harpie in rare moment of sanity: Killing innocent and unarmed civilians is wrong.

Ultra-wingnutty response: Stop flagellating yourself! You need not punish yourself with those whips of humanity, this is WAR!

But what I found more amusing is his contention that those on the right condemn the killing of innocents to appease the “left”! Yeah, because that’s been their MO all along. Bog-mindling.


Let’s assume that he is right, and that Hiroshima, Nagasaki, Dresden, et al. are widely and generally “lauded” because they shortened the war, or killed a lot of bad guys, or in some other way “protected the United States.” I find it interesting that he does not include My Lai in that list — interesting, but completely understandable, since that incident is both (a) relevant by virtue of its similarity to Haditha and (b) not in the slightest “lauded” by anybody, even the most vehement Vietnam War apologists. We can argue for decades about whether nuking Japan was necessary, justified, laudable, an atrocity or what… but I don’t think we could have the same argument about My Lai, and I don’t think we can have the same argument about Haditha. (I recognize that you can argue about whether My Lai — or Haditha — was the product of a bunch of scared and angry soldiers overreacting to a perceived threat, or a calculated cold-blooded massacre, or something in between. I don’t think there is any possible argument that the subsequent cover-up was justifiable in any sense of the word.)

Next point: He talks about “the Left’s glee over the story….” I call bullshit. Since I can speak for The Left, I will come right out and say that The Left reserves its glee for the schadenfreudelicious thought of Karl Rove going to jail in the wake of Plamegate, or any similar frogmarch moment for the movers, shakers and mouthpieces of The Right. No, The Left feels no glee over Haditha. The overall reaction is one of horror and outrage at the atrocity, along with a smidgen of stunned disbelief that any American could feel anything other than horror and outrage. Much as I detest her, even Malkin seems to have tapped into a current of humanity that escapes this “Jawa” and many of his commenters.

melior (in Austin)

The hippy dippy ’60s also spawned some of the greatest American literature that Lileks has never read.

from the NYT review of Slaughterhouse Five:
During World War II, at the age of 23, Kurt Vonnegut, Jr. was captured by the Germans and imprisoned beneath the city of Dresden, ”the Florence of the Elbe.” He was there on Feb. 13, 1945, when the Allies firebombed Dresden in a massive air attack that killed 130,000 people and destroyed a landmark of no military significance.

The author pronounces his book a failure, ”because there is nothing intelligent to say about a massacre.”

Lileks certainly makes a good case for that.

melior (in Austin)

Eh, that was Jawa Vinnie, Lileks was the last hairball.

I’ve got wingnut indigestion.


Does the “” signify a frat boy domain? That would explain a lot.

Apart from their atrociousness, these guys share something with most Americans and Canadians; while they may have relatives who fought in wars, they have never experienced war up close and personal. They can talk about it as though it were a video game. Ironic, really. The longer you live in a peaceful environment, the easier it is to contemplate waging war. And much easier still if you are a complete fucking moron.


Only sixty years? We should be so unlucky to forget this so soon.

You’re absolutely right about that. I wasn’t really clear. I was talking about the people we’re creating. Think about this. This 20 year old kid walks into a house, and there, amid the screaming, crying, the noise, the horror, there, in a back room this kid takes his rifle off safe, points it at the head of a one-year-old child, and pulls the trigger. This kid, who is so dehumanized, so dead inside, so turned around by what we have made him do, isn’t influenced by the helplessness and terror. BANG! Turns around, walks out. This kid is going to be somebody’s neighbor, maybe a clerk at the grocery store or the mechanic at jiffy lube. Like Colin Powell said about Iraq, we broke him–we own him. He didn’t go over there the first time like that. But that’s how he’s coming home…



I fear for their souls of Vinnie and his cheering section.

I know nothing about these people but their comments turn my stomach. If the commenters include combat veterans, those individuals need help. But I suspect they’re a bunch of Rambo wannabes who have gone over the edge on way too much need to out jerk the guy next to them lest they be discovered for what they sound like: cowards who need a realworld lesson in the brutality of war.

If these people remain so cavalier in the presence of a dying four year old, after watching somebody burn to death, after handling the proceeds of war day after day after soul-deadening day, then truly they have lost their humanity.

HeadlessBodyof SpiroAgnew

There’s a reason only WW2 incidents were mentioned and it all goes back to the mythology of the Greatest Generation and the lingering guilt that some baby boomers and their ofspring have about not living up to the old man’s example. Never mind that the good war wasn’t nearly as good as they want to imagine; they need to beleive that if they were faced with a similar challenge then they too could step up and save all civilization and then come home and build Levittown. And by golly do it even better than those old guys at the Legion hall ’cause their kids won’t turn into nasty crusty IslamoMexiConSymps stinking of patchouli and teh ghey sex and voting rights and who knows what other perversions.
So they’ve turned the GWoT into their New Good War.
Granted it’s a Good War they have no intention of actually physcially fighting themselves, or paying for with higher taxes, or sacrificing for in any way, but it’s still the New Good War and if bigosh we need to have some stupid kid from the barrio blow a toddler’s brains out as he looks it in the eyes just so grandad won’t think we’re pussies any more, well, whaddaayh gonna do? Go all soft and moonbatty? Hell no! Not when we’ve got a legion of arm chair Zapp Brannigans to tell us how it should be done.


Speaking of inhumanity, read the chilling thing Eric Alterman posted today:

…In this case I had just put forward the question, “What would you do?â€? to a hypothetical situation in which several prisoners had been captured who may, or may not, know about an ambush the enemy had emplaced for our unit some distance away. The prisoners appeared to be civilians, taken in a village from which we had, in this notional scenario, recently taken fire.

“I’d shoot one of them sir, to see if it got the next one to talk,� said Ericsson with a perfectly straight face. The room remained silent.

“WHAT?!â€? It was not my calmest reply because I was, frankly, stunned. …

…Ericsson repeated his response, looking me straight in the eye. “I’d shoot one of them sir. And then, if that didn’t get the next guy to talk, I’d shoot another.â€?…

“OK, how many of you think that this is the correct response?â€? [I asked] Now I was addressing the whole group, most of my company in fact. After a few seconds almost half of the hands went up.


Go figure. It’s the “Jawa Report.” What an insult, to Jawas and Sand People too.

Herr Doktor Bimler

Atrocities are perfectly normal, predictable, understandable events during war? Some people would see that as another good reason not to start a war.


I’m sorry, but i’m getting sick of these “evil neocons have turned sweet boys in uniform into zombie killing machines” posts.

Fuck that. How many of us have debated assholes who slaver at the thought of “gettin’ dem a few ragheads”? Well, some of those assholes actually sign up now and then!

We all know that some guys and gals in the armed forces are sick, racist fucks who actually enjoy torturing or murdering arabs if they can get away with it. The blame lies with both the ones who pulled the triggers and inserted the glowsticks, AND their enablers in Washington.


Nope. While everything you say is correct, your premise is dead wrong. There are psycopaths and sociopaths in every walk of life, and war does give them an outlet. But two points. First, evil neocons didn’t turn good kids into zombies, evil WAR does that. Well over 99% of kids don’t want to kill anyone. Sure, in basic and on your way over, you talk tough, talk about “seein’ some action”, but you really don’t want to. You’re just incredibly scared. But after a couple of kills, after you’ve seen the gore and horror, it does get easier. And before you know it, yeah, you can shoot a guy trying to give up ’cause it’s easier. And it’s really not a great leap from there to shooting loathsome civilians who might be the enemy anyway. Don’t think this is in any way new, or somehow only a product of the latter half of the twentieth century, because war has fucked people up for millenia. And second, mister maker, is that in combat you have no “enabler”. Not in Washington, not back at battalion, not your sergeant in the same hole with you. Understand this: People are trying to kill you. This is all the enabler you need to lose a significant portion of your humanity. How you comport yourself after you lose that civilized veneer is a matter of personal pride and individual morality, coupled with decent leadership. But after you come home from combat, you are NEVER the same person you were, and you never will be. Combat is what caused the change. It’s really as simple and as ugly as that…


Little Green Shitballs

Killing fetuses: morally repugnant!!!!!!!!!

Killing Iraqi civilians: Like we’re supposed to give a shit.


Has anyone else read In the Lake of the Woods by Tim O’Brien? Definitely worth reading in this context and worth reading any time.


Tim O’Brien is the BEST. If you can read “The things they carried” and not cry about a gallon of tears, you’re one muy malo homrbre…



Oh dear. It says something about their mindset that they think liberals would react with glee — all I feel is sadness.

If atrocities are OK during war, then why don’t we just allow all the troops to rape and pillage? Gah.


Let’s try a thought experiment, here. Let’s pretend that this is a justifiable position, and that executing toddlers is a neccesary and inevitable part of war (To be clear: IT FUCKING ISN’T. But let’s pretend, for the sake of the argument).

Now, what is the goal of the current war: Conquest? Already did it. Destroying the military capability of our enemy? Did that too, the infrastructure’s gone.

So, what we are currently trying to do is stabilise the region; make sure that another dictator doesn’t take control and develop WMDs or team up with the aliens from V or whatever the fuck Saddam was supposed to have done.

Now: How stable is a country where, at any time, a person can come into your house and kill you for no good reason? How does this massacre advance our current goals in Iraq?

Answer: IT FUCKING DOESN’T. It pisses the Iraqis off, and makes them more likely to embrace an anti-American government.

Jesus, you have to be fucking MORON to not care about this shit, never mind the sociopathy.


“Tim O’Brien is the BEST. If you can read “The things they carriedâ€? and not cry about a gallon of tears, you’re one muy malo homrbre…”

I managed it- though there was a good amount of grimacing (to be fair, I’m rarely moved to severe emotion by media);
Another good one for this context (if you can mind the self-serving “I, however, had nothing to do with it”) is Phil Caputo’s “Rumor of War”


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