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Desc:A World War II veteran tells a war story.
Category:Military, Educational
Tags:war, regret, PTSD, storycorps
Submitted:Binro the Heretic
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Comment count is 19
bawbag - 2015-12-13
Mr. Purple Cat Esq. - 2015-12-13
Contemporary version.
Was remotely piloting drone. Dropped bombs on some place, killed a few dozen brown people, probably some women and children in the mix, some were killed or wounded by their family members flying bones shards and body parts. Forgot about it by the next day like it was a random video game.
fedex - 2015-12-13
but you didn't forget, did you?
you'd like to but you can't, deep down, isn't that right?
isn't that why you wake up in the middle of the night, heart slamming through your ribcage like it had to escape, the 8-bit memories of those shattered lives forever imprinted on your optic nerve, and thusly in your subconscious mind, forever to roam the shadowy hallways between to rooms of memory which you have blocked out the windows of, with dark rolls of paper, or alcohol, or whatever helps to put the demons to sleep, at least for a little while...

a little while...

fedex - 2015-12-13
I guess I should watch the movie too

fedex - 2015-12-13
holy shit I was close!

That guy - 2015-12-13
I like how you think the West is the don't-give-a-fuck bad guys in asymmetric warfare.....

Sorry, tell me again how much the Islamicists are to blame for hiding among their civilians as a consitent tenet of their overall strategy. Did you say it 1% or was it 0%?

Oh, that's right. They're brown, so we're automatically callous, right?
It's hard work for us to be such villains when we're up against a bunch of humanistic freedom fighters, no?

How do you compare the West's idea of trying to do the right thing, with Islamicists' idea of that and come out critical of the West? Apparently by imagining the prototypical soldier to be a callous racist on our side only.

M-DEEM - 2015-12-13
My understanding is that drone pilots suffer ptsd/guilt pretty significantly.

Interesting vid too.

EvilHomer - 2015-12-14
M-DEEM is correct. Drone piloting is an extremely stressful job, and as a result, the military requires some of the strictest psychological screening procedures for its prospective droneateers. In fact, drone pilots currently have a "burnout rate" (i.e. flipping out and quitting their jobs) at nearly three times what is considered normal for pilots!

I am not making this up.

EvilHomer - 2015-12-14
Here is an NPR story:

http://www.npr.org/2011/12/19/143926857/report-high-levels-of- burnout-in-u-s-drone-pilots

EvilHomer - 2015-12-14
One section, directly relevant to Mr Cat's comment:

The particular nature of drone warfare is also a contributor to the higher stress levels. While the number is very small, officials who conducted the study said they did encounter a handful of pilots who suffered symptoms of PTSD post-traumatic stress disorder directly linked to their experience running combat operations. Unlike traditional pilots flying manned aircraft in a war zone, the pilots operating remote drones often stare at the same piece of ground in Afghanistan or Iraq for days, sometimes months. They watch someone's pattern of life, see people with their families, and then they can be ordered to shoot.

Shoebox Joe - 2015-12-14
@That Guy

I don't think Mr. Purple Cat's comment can be solely coined as a political opinion. It can be, but it doesn't feel that way to me. (Note: haven't really followed their posts and don't recall anything problematic in the past, so you'll have to assist me there.)

I believe it's more bigotry in general than anything topical.

Mr. Purple Cat Esq. - 2015-12-14
@Thatguy you have learned your terminology from fox news very well.

Here is what happens..
World powers (The US, Russia and miscellaneous (The US in particular have been doing it on a tremendous scale and frequency recently)) decide they want to foment change in some shitty helpless middle-eastern country for some reason (get oil or just to satiate their military industrial complexes need for war) Their way of doing this involves bombing the shit out of it and or installing some despotic dictator and or just destabilising the whole area. As a result many people die needlessly, the survivors are thus transformed into zealots, people who have nothing left but hate for their tormentors (they have no prospects, no home no family cus theyve all been blowed up) These pathetic people manage to kill a few citizens of the world power. World power responds with more bombing. Rinse repeat.

ps. I actually know nothing about the experiences / dropout rate of drone pilots, so my little story above is seemingly way off in that regard.
(the death by flying family members ribcages and such is true though)

That guy - 2015-12-14
lol at Fox News, like I watch that shit
take your The Guardian butt plug out for a minute

I'm not here to defend the US-Iraq war as moral, or even as an honest mistake. It was deliberate and W will likely go down as our worst president/administration of all time. He seriously fucked up our country.

That said, W can W all he wants, and our enemies are still real. They're not a hallucination of the right, nor are they the sole creation of the right. Polarized thinking might get you to conclude that, but hold back.

I am here to defend the US going into Afghanistan, including killing Islamicist targets whenever possible, even if their family goes with them. In the best of all worlds within possibility, the West still needed to go into Afghanistan, and to continue with strikes, there and elsewhere, that would injure civilians along the way. The typical drone pilot is not callous about killing civilians, fuck you asshole. The typical Islamicist wants to kill as many civilians as possible. You don't always need to put those two things on a scale against each other, but if you never ever do, you're a fucking ideological hack, too.

There are going to be fucked-up moments by Western soldiers that are accidents, or callous, or psychopathic. That's when our actions go wrong. When Islamicist actions go wrong, they fail to blow up civilians.

Drone attacks can be more precise than anything that came before them. They can also go wrong. But I don't expect the West to stand idly by across multiple terror attacks- and appeasement is for fucking imbeciles.

If the cycle is doomed to repeat, I'm fine with that, because I have no reason to believe that Islamicists will ever stop, and I don't see the cycle how you do. It will always be a new issue for them. They are not fighting for freedom and their homeland, they're fighting for an ideology. (A fraction of their fight may be economic, but they've completely externalized the economic fight they need to have, let alone that there's plenty of money in Saudi Al Qaeda)
But your strawman "get oil or just to satiate their military industrial complexes need for war" is too dumb to take apart. You couldn't think of anything else, huh?
Furthermore, we're going to err in asymmetric warfare, it's inevitable, e.g. thinking that destabilization is good and maybe that being a terrible idea.... or maybe it's too soon to tell. I'm fine with ruthlessness versus what we're up against.
Dresden was fire-bombed. That was a completely horrible thing to do, except in the context of the war. Destabilizing a bunch of shit so that two of our enemies fight each other instead is fine by me in the big picture, because my judgement is that Islamic power is a thousand-fold worse for humanity than Western power, and I don't believe that clean-hands ethics is a practically possible kind of ethics.
Individuals sadly get swept along with the tide.

Islamicist values are FUCKING INSANE (and moderate Islam's value fucking suck), the West's values are only crappy at times, and there's no third side for you to be on unless you live in the Amazon or something. China's? Go nuts. You'll be dead of pollution in a few years.

The Guardian and Marxist continentals and their ilk have no motherfucking solution for Islamicists, and they're fixated on thinking that all enemies are internal and conservative, and that military action is evil, deliberate and pointlessly agressive by its nature. Such idealism. The Left's job is to oppose the Right, apparently, and not engage in circumspection or break the mold. It's a newspaper and university crowd that (like the right) has lost all sense of proportion and exists in pure reaction.

In a sentence, the modern left in the West has made its moral center "anything but Western power". It's mouth-breathingly stupid, and cuts hard against what liberal values should be, to boot.

I don't watch Fox News. I'm center-left and I try to keep my head out of the clouds by trying to vote/push/donate/volunteer for a practically better world. I don't pray for magic Anti-Western, Anti-Right idealistic solutions as a fundamental stance.
But keep high-horsing it, by all means. Maybe we can throw a bunch of money at the Islamicists. They'll be sure to distribute it the way Sweden would, right?

Mr. Purple Cat Esq. - 2015-12-14
The solution is pretty simple. Stop creating radical islamists.

Mr. Purple Cat Esq. - 2015-12-14
Instead of bombing people and all their amenities. Allow them to get an education and maybe have a shot at a decent life. Also dont randomly blow up their family members.

You could say the same to radical islamists (dont blow up westerners lest you incur their wrath)
But we have to be the magnanimous party here. We have indussty, nukes, armies, wealth, everything. Countries like Afghanistan are not even remotely a threat, I find it mind-boggling how the mass media has somehow managed to convince the hoi-polloi that they are,

That guy - 2015-12-15

I don't think we're going to come around to each other's ways of thinking here.
-Radical Islam is creating radical Islamicists. If you think it's predominantly the West's fault you're insane.
-I'm not for bombing amenities and families. But I am for waging war against Islamicists however we have to. Family members get swept along with it, but not randomly. I don't believe that's deliberate, and I'm ok with collateral casualties if we have no better way to take out key Islamicists.
-The Taliban in Afghanistan/Pakistan was/is not remotely a threat? Are you joking?

Anagramother - 2015-12-13
I like this like I like my women- heavy, sad & beautiful.
TeenerTot - 2015-12-14
I believe there is a "storycorps" tag.
Shoebox Joe - 2015-12-14
I still find it odd that anyone can say they are for all out war at the drop of a hat when a good portion of their opponents will end up being young, brazen and stupid enough to get a permanent tattoo of their favorite band during their teen years. It's the old men at the pulpit, not the kids with the gun.
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