Sunday, September 08, 2013


Michael Patrick Brewer in the Tucson Citizen found this quote from a famous American general:
by Smedley D. Butler, Major General, United States Marine Corps, 1936 Two time recipient of the Congressional Medal Honor

“Boys with a normal viewpoint were taken from the fields and offices and factories and classrooms and put into the ranks. There they were remolded; they were made over; they were made to ‘about face’ , to regard murder as the order of the day.They were put shoulder to shoulder, and through mass psychology, they were entirely changed. We used them for a couple of years, and trained them to think nothing at all of killing or of being killed. Then suddenly we discharged them and told them to make another, “about face.” This time they had to do their own readjusting without mass psychology, without officers aid and advice, without nation-wide propaganda. We didn’t need them any more. So we scattered them about without any speeches or parades. Many too many, of these fine young boys are eventually destroyed, mentally, because they could not make the final, “about face, alone. 
The LA Times has a current version of Butler's remarks:
Her husband came home, and the war came with him.
By Christopher Goffard
Photography and video by Rick Loomis

September 8, 2013

One night her husband thought he was back in Iraq and tried to kick down the door of their home on Garden Gate Lane. He shouted something in Arabic she didn't understand. As a cavalry scout in Baghdad, he had crashed through countless doors on nighttime raids. The "hard knock," he called it.

She clutched their infant son, afraid of her husband for the first time. She wouldn't let him in. He stared at her through the glass panes. Didn't he recognize her? He shoved, elbowed, punched. The lock began to buckle. The glass shattered.

The war would crash through her careful plans in a hundred ways, large and small. She watched it empty her refrigerator and shut off her gas. She came to feel like one of its strangest casualties, a widow with a living husband.

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