Saturday, August 27, 2005

Legionaires Disease II is already speading

Now at one level, it's obviously ridiculous as well as pathetic for the octogenarians of the American Legion to be threatening to come out and rumble with antiwar protesters.

But today I noticed something that hadn't caught my attention before: American Legion criticizes anti-war protesters AP, Home News Tribune (New Jersey) 08/24/05.

It seems that the same Legionaires' convention that called for violence to suppress the expression of majority opinion in the United States had quite a distinguished guest to address them (my emphasis):

The delegates were praised by Gen. Richard Myers, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, as well as Gov. Linda Lingle, U.S. Sen. Daniel Akaka, U.S. Rep. Ed Case and Honolulu Mayor Mufi Hannemann.

Myers said American support for the war on terrorism is critical because "success is hard to define and hard to measure" in a conflict lacking front lines.

"It's vital for Americans to stay resolved, to stay committed, and to be patient," said Myers, who is ending a ten-day tour visiting military bases around the globe and who said the war on terror would "continue to be challenging for some time to come."

"Resolve or will is ultimately what will decide whether we defeat ... extremism and terrorism or whether we give in," he said.

Why is the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff addressing the national convention of an organization overtly encouraging extralegal violence - maybe Christian terrorism is a more appropriate name for it - against their fellow citizens who disagree with them in their support of Dear Leader Bush and all his mighty works?  An organization that obviously hates American freedoms?

Actually, I'm serious about this.  It's a disgrace that the highest military officer in a democracy would associate himself with a group taking explicit public positions like that.  The fact that Gen. Myers lent his support to this hate group at that convention really is disturbing.

Yes, I know most American Legion members probably don't pay much attention to the national organization official positions.  Between their cataracts and age-related dementia, most of them probably can't even read the official resolutions.

But this really does stink.  I'm a member of the Rotary Club myself.  And if the national or international Rotary organization were to adopt official positions like the American Legion has done, I would resign immediately.  I have no desire to be a part of an organization that promotes Christian terrorism against majority opinion in America.

I should also say that I can't imagine Rotary adopting such a position.  For one thing, Rotary is a worldwide, genuinely international organization, while the American Legion is a bunch of old American white guys who have apparently let their organization degenerate into a geriatric hate group.  Rotary was actively involved in promoting the establishment of the United Nations and continues to support the UN today.  In today's political climate, that distinguishes them in itself.

But I think it's a perfectly legitimate question to address to members of the American Legion why they are supporting an organization that hates American freedoms and advocates violence against a majority of their own fellow citizens.

And it's legitimate several times over to ask why the Chairman of the JCS is lending his support to advocacy of vigilante violence against peaceful protesters by his appearance there.

Maybe some of those fine Republican "moderates" we keep hearing about will jump all over him for that.  Chuck Hagel? Dick Lugar? Maverick McCain?  How do you great "moderates" feel about this kind of mixing of the uniformed military in advocating political violence in America?  I'm sure we'll be hearing from those brave "moderates" any day now.


purcellneil said...

Myers commits the sin also of engaging in partisan politics, not a role the top brass are usually permitted to play in our system.  I think it would have been scandalous and have resulted in his firing had he gone to Cindy Sheehan's side and spoken in support of her opposition to the war.  So why is he permitted to speak before the American Legion encouraging their political activism in support of the President's war in Iraq?

In my opinion, Myers is a craven brown-nosing bureaucrat who is unfit for command.  All the top brass have been silent in public about the need for more Troops and better equipment in Iraq.  Why?  Because they would rather sacrifice the mission, and the Troops, than risk the ire of George W Bush.

Abu Ghraib is not the only sin that will one day be laid at Myers' door.  He and Franks and Sanchez and Abizaid will all face the judgment of history and be found wanting.


jmmcnallydvm said...

Maybe the senility and dementia isn't the problem of the Lgionaires. Try looking in the mirror before your delusional dementia totally takes over. Ever thought about the possibility that wisdom developes over time and through the process of experience, and those that have put in the most years and experienced more, just might possibly have gained some.

I will put my praises to those that have fought to promote and spread freedom and democracy throughout the world in order to preserve ours. You might take a look at those behind the scenes supporting the antiwar movement and you might find your associating with some rather unpleasant company that hate freedom and democracy. Lie down with dogs and your bound to get fleas.

Put Cindy in jail and keep her there for treasonous acts! Congress did declare war and the laws to do this are in place already. My take is Bush is too lenient and should follow in Woodrow Wilsons footstep and start enforcing those laws.

bmiller224 said...

Two points:

A large majority of the American public, 67% in a recent Gallup poll, disapprove of Dear Leader Bush's performance on Iraq.  That means you people who support Bush's Iraq War policies are a minority of Americans, barely a third, actually.

The point about the VFW leadership's position has nothing to do with how many of them "fought for freedom" in the past, whether it was 100 years ago or last month.  The point is that the leadership was encouraging vigilante violence against *peaceful* protesters expressing a *majority* opinion.  With the Chairman of the JCS shamefully there to lend his own implied support.

So whatever those VFW members who support this position may have fought for in the past, they're fighting for something very different than freedom and democracy in America now.

I noted this past weekend, though, that with upwards of 200,000 people protesting the war in Washington and thousands of others doing so all over the country, that I haven't heard any reports of anyone being inspired to follow the VFW's suggestion and assault the protesters on behalf of the small minority that supports Bush's Iraq War.  You normally have to *pay* goons to do something like that.

But for all the big talk,  not many of these more-patriotic-than-anyone-else VFW zealots turned out for the PROwar events on Saturday (150 people) or Sunday (400 people) in Washington.  Rather these rightwing fools supporting the assault-the-protesters positions should hold off on the phony macho posturing until they can at least get a couple of thousand people to show their face in public to say they SUPPORT Bush's war. - Bruce