Don't blame our heroes for the politicians' war | Teen Ink

Don't blame our heroes for the politicians' war

January 13, 2009
By Anonymous

I don’t think those who are against war are, in any way, wrong that is not the problem. The problem is that some people wrongly accuse our soldiers, the victims of circumstance, for war and its atrocities.

During the Vietnam conflict, the people resented the soldiers more than anyone else because they where the ones the public saw fighting and killing. But it gets me angry when people talk about war with such low regard for soldiers. At least three of my friends are against war in all aspects but only one says this quote time and again, “If the soldiers wouldn’t join the army, than war would be a car without fuel.” How naive.

The truth is that a vast majority of soldiers aren’t there by choice. They swore an oath when they enlisted, to follow the orders of the Commander and Chief. So when the orders come, do you honestly expect them to desert their duties? You must think logically and see it though their eyes.

The punishment for desertion in wartime is death, and ignoring the order to attack is no less desertion than running away during the fighting. They choose to fight. But doing so is no small sacrifice, for they face down death every day.

Even in so called “illegal wars”, in which no formal declaration of war was ever signed, as exemplified in our own war in Iraq, Congress decided officially to send our boys overseas. Still American citizens join during war time through a feeling of duty and obligation to their country.

These brave souls are not war makers, but are, in fact, working to end the war. They fight to protect us from those who would see us wiped from the earth, until the politicians decide enough lives have been lost.

Will Rogers put it quite well when he said, "Diplomats are just as essential in starting a war as soldiers are for finishing it." It is true. Only Congress can send us into war.

I tend to refrain from arguing with the unpatriotic or sometimes just simply uninformed people who attack and blame our military. I do say quite openly that I fully support the United States armed forces and would never accuse the unfortunate men and women who live through the hell that is war.

War is a crime, but in no way, by no means on God’s earth, does it make soldiers criminals. As I said before, they are the victims of cruel circumstances. The corrupt, arrogant, and sometimes inexperienced politicians are the criminals and the war makers. These “Mob Bosses” start wars, but are too afraid to do what is necessary to end them.

If you don’t believe me, just look at President Johnson. He refused to end our involvement in Vietnam for fear of looking weak. His was a self centered decision - with only personal gain in mind. It was based on fearful, clouded belief.

Jean-Paul Sartre, a French existentialist philosopher, novelist and literary critic once commented, “When the rich wage war, it’s the poor who die.” This quote was also used by Linkin Park in the song, Hands Held High.

The sacrifices these men and women make in a foreign land, away from their loved ones, are met by ignorance and accusations. Is this what these heroes deserve? Do you--as a living, feeling person--think it just or fair that another human, who has made sacrifices far greater than your own, receive such treatment? These men serve our country to the best of their ability. If you oppose them, and then expect them to defend you afterwards, I have only one small question. Can the same be said for you?

The author's comments:
In this article I hope to inform the reader, and the country as a whole, about the facts of war and who the blame falls on. I am in no way attacking anti-war activists or politicians as a whole. Only pointing out the overlooked flaws of those who drive our wars.
P.S. I would love for feedback from anyone and everyone. I am open to your ideas and love to have conversations about such topics.

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