Re: marines in vietnam (multiple responses)

Joe McDonald (
Sat, 27 Sep 1997 02:45:34 +0100

SIXTIES-L wrote:
> [1]
> From: Paul Heavens <>
> Subject: Re: marines in vietnam
Just because you were
> "there" dont mean you got the picture any better than an observer.
> Even tho being "there" was obviously the more real and intense
> experience. I think wisdom comes, not from experience, but from
> understanding (war can kill you). Dont have to die to know its the
> end.

The wisdom you speak of is simple understanding. Combat soldiers know
war can kill you even before combat. The wisdom I was refering to is
knowing how foreign policy and the system that inforces that policy can
develop into something seemingly out of control. Most of us have never
been there, and dont want to be there, but that does not mean that we
should fail to see how a situation like Bosnia or the West Bank can move
from order to chaos to war. How do we avoid this series of events.
When is it out of control. How much can the appplication of "rules of
engagement" and use of "deadly force" mitigate chaos? and when is it
possible to stop the killing after it has started? And lastly what are
the effects of enforcing deadly foreign policy on the enforcers and the
I just dont see anyone BUT the military community dealing with any of
these issues and of course it comes out in a military way in the end.
But bear in mind that it is a civilian system that ORDERS the military
around not visa versa. I dont think it is fair to compare Chile, Libia,
or Peru in this way with America. We do NOT have a military government
but a civilian government. One that constantly sends its soldiers off to
dangerous situations to do things that many people do not want them to
do and they dont want to do themselves.
BUT where are the modern day Bertrand Russels? (sp) Causes are causes,
like saving whales, and integrating genders. Who will attempt to change
the civilian/military system so that it is better and we feel safe as
well? And who wants to deal with the issues of violence? Especially
today when it seems to be all around us and Americans seem to be worried
about it. Then why not ask combat soldiers? Why if you do that are you
considered as right wing pro-war person. Then if you dont talk to
combat soldiers you are considered pro-peace!? Excuse me but I dont see
the logic.
country joe mcdonald

"A captain with a childs heart always commands a happy crew", Linda
country joe Hm Paje <>
Berkeley Vietnam Veterans Memorial <>