Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Quick post ....


I heard something on the news today that has been bothering me, sort of niggling at my brain. And I know why - it's because I don't understand the military, or politics, or war. I would not make a good soldier - I'm just not that much of a rule follower.


So what bothered me? I heard this morning that we are sending "30,000 troops" to Afghanistan. I'm not making a statement about whether I think this is wrong or right or bad or good. What bothers me is the word "Troops".


It took me years to figure out that "Troops" means soldiers. Mostly men, mostly young, woman also. Why don't we say what we mean - we are sending 30,000 people to war, into a foreign country to face awful danger. I know that mostly the individuals have signed up for this, and I truly honor their commitment and courage. It's not something that I could ever do, I'm way too much of a chicken.


And in army terms - they are "troops" not people, really. But if we did say it out loud, what kind of a difference would it make! Can you imagine a newscaster saying "we are sending 30,000 men and woman into a war zone" - obviously fur would fly, people would protest - which is why we say "troops".


I'm not editing this post, no time - I have to get back to work.


I just thought I'd share my moment of realization - it struck me hard this morning, perhaps because I was warm, safe, drinking coffee in bed and ready to go off to a cushy job.


What are your thoughts about this?

11 comments:

studio lolo said...

That sure does put it into proper perspective Mim!
I'm sure it would make a difference somehow if we said men and women...or girls and boys even.

xo

marianne said...

Yes you have a point there.........
It is madness.
But you are still stuck with the inheritance of the former president.
We send people too to Afganistan and I am completely against it. every man or woman who gets killed there is one too many.
Wars are so complicated, I know it is not that simple....
Those men and women there are so couragious and deserve respect and honor. Wish we could say afterwards it was all worth while but I have strong doubts.....

Hope they will all return safe.
Troops here are called troepen and troep means also mess. Great idea to call them just what they are: (brave) people!
I understand your anger

Bea said...

If we the people said we wanted a MANDATORY enlistment of ALL young people from ages 18 on up. No excuses, no getting out for any reason. Medical problems, desk job.
Men, women, everybody. Education put on hold. Just a mandatory draft can you just image the uproar? Can you imagine the demostrations? Would people sit quietly and allow that to happen? The world might call my bluff. I don't know. It's not something that I would really want but right now we have reserves doing battle. Mother's and father's that frankly haven't really been trained for this. We have armies of the young, poor, perhaps not that well educated who get recruited because they don't have anything else to do, they think they are going to get a good deal out of the whole thing.
We would do so much better work in the world if we put hammers and books in the hands of our youth and food on their backs and water to share. But, that's just an old woman's point of view having seen what damage six wars have done to the men that I have known. :)Bea

Lynn said...

In response to Beas talk about mandatory draft. They do that in Israel and everyone goes (with the exception of Orthodox Jews) I believe. Men and Women at age 18.
And they remain in the reserves until they are 45 years old. This may have changed since I lived in Israel in the 60's but that is how it was then if I remember correctly. The tone there is more of honor and duty to country, a willingness to serve. So no hue and cry of protest occurs.

I am certainly not pro war and wish President Bush had not started us in this whole mess! Obama I think is stuck in a position of having to get us out of the mess in the most expediant way possible. I have no idea if the military personel that he deals with have the right answers or not. I pray they know what they are doing and its in our best interest. Not for making money, but for getting the job done and bringing our men and women/troops home.

soulbrush said...

the whole mess stinks, and I am just so very very grateful it is not my sons out there. grrr i just get annoyed even thinking about it.i think we should send the politicians out there as troops!!!

Baino said...

It's the language of war Mim . . troops, collateral damage, friendly fire . . all designed to dehumanise those we send over. Although we should have been sending our solidiers to Afghanistan in the first place not Iraq. Sadly we need to finish what we started. Australian's have been in Afghanistan for some years now. It's a dangerous place but soldiers sign up to fight. That's their job. It's just stupid politicians who dictate 'where' they fight.

Lisa at Greenbow said...

Make love not war still is the adage I adhere to. I still have a patch that says War is not good for flowers or other living things.

katie jane said...

I am humbled and honored that they are willing to do this work that ensures our freedom. I cannot thank them enough. My husband is a police chief and he puts his life on the line every day so that we can be warm, and safe and drink our coffee without fear of danger.

ElizT said...

Depressing.

amanda said...

My response does not mean that I agree with the action taken, but I see the word "troops" as a class of people with specific training. I really don't think it's meant to dehumanize them, but rather specifies that they have enlisted and been properly trained. It would be like saying 30,000 accountants, or artists, or clergy, were sent for a specific task. It just defines a class of people.
amanda

ArtistUnplugged said...

I am just thankful, that men and women, are willing to step up, spend time training, time away from their families, risking their lives very often to do a job that alot of us would not do. Most of them consider it an honor to serve their country. I pray they all can return safely.