We Were Soldiers - an essay

  1. Provided by Joe Galloway, author of "We Were Soldiers"
    and is an item of possible interest.

    This one is definitely NOT tongue in cheek. Sig, the
    author, was a teen-aged Marine who marched and
    fought as a rifleman to and from the Chosin reservoir
    in Korea in 1950. He switched to the Army, and served
    as a Special Forces officer in Vietnam. After Vietnam
    he joined the CIA, and went back to Korea.

    He's been there, done that, and has some specific
    thoughts on countries that don't "like" us.

    If you aren't interested in the ramblings of an old man,
    please delete now. If you're still there, pull up a chair
    and listen.

    Is there anyone else out there who's sick and tired of
    all the polls being taken in foreign countries as to
    whether or not they "like" us? The last time I looked,
    the word "like" had nothing to do with foreign policy.
    I prefer 'respect' or 'fear'. They worked for Rome,
    which civilized and kept the peace in the known world
    a hell of a lot longer than our puny two centuries-plus.

    I see a left-wing German got elected to office recently
    by campaigning against the foreign policy of the United
    States. Yeah, that's what I want, to be lectured about
    war and being a "good neighbor" by a German. Their
    head honcho said they wouldn't take part in a war
    against Iraq. Kind of nice, to see them taking a pass on
    a war once in while. Perhaps we needed to have the word
    "World" in front of War. I think it's time to bring our
    boys home from Germany. Outside of the money we'd
    save, we'd make the Germans "like" us a lot more, after
    they started paying the bills for their own defense.

    Last time I checked, France isn't too fond of us either.
    They sort of liked us back on June 6th, 1944, though,
    didn't they? If you don't think so, see how nicely they
    take care of the enormous American cemeteries up above
    the Normandy beaches. For those of you who've studied
    history, we also have a few cemeteries in places like
    Belleau Woods and Chateau Thierry also. For those of
    you who haven't studied it, that was from World War One,
    the first time Europe screwed up and we bailed out the

    That's where the US Marines got the title 'Devil Dogs'
    or, if you still care about what the Germans think,
    "Teufelhunde". I hope I spelled that right; sure wouldn't
    want to offend anyone, least of all a German.

    Come to think of it, when Europe couldn't take care of
    their Bosnian problem recently, guess who had to help
    out there also. Last time I checked, our kids are still there.
    I sort of remember they (Clinton) said they would be
    out in a year. Gee, how time flies when you're having fun.

    Now we hear that the South Koreans aren't too happy
    with us either. They "liked" us a lot better, of course, in
    June, 1950. It took more than 50,000 Americans killed
    in Korea to help give them the lifestyle they currently enjoy,
    but then who's counting? I think it's also time to bring
    the boys home from there. There are about 37,000 young
    Americans on the DMZ separating the South Koreans
    from their "brothers" up North. Maybe if we leave, they
    can begin to participate in the "good life" that North Korea
    currently enjoys. Uh huh. Sure.

    I also understand that a good portion of the Arab/Moslem
    world now doesn't "like" us either. Did anyone ever sit
    down and determine what we would have to do to get
    them to like us? Ask them what they would like us to do.
    Die?. Commit ritual suicide? Bend over? Maybe we should
    follow the advice of our dimwitted, dullest knife in the
    drawer, Senator Patty Murray, and build more roads,
    hospitals, day care centers, and orphanages like
    Osama bin Laden does. What with all the orphans Osama
    has created, the least he can do is build some places to
    put them. Senator Stupid says if we would only "emulate"
    Osama, the Arab world would love us.

    Sorry Patty; in addition to the fact that we already do
    all of those things around the world and have been doing
    them for over sixty years, I don't take public transportation,
    and I certainly wouldn't take it with a bomb strapped to
    the guy next to me.

    Don't get me wrong: I'm not in favor of going to war.
    Been there, done that. Several times, in fact. But I think
    we ought to have some polls in this country about other
    countries, and see if we "like" THEM. Problem is, if you
    listed the countries, not only wouldn't the average
    American know if he liked them or not, he wouldn't be
    able to find them. If we're supposed to worry about
    them, how about them worrying about us?

    We were nice to the North Koreans in 1994, as we
    followed the policies of Neville Clinton. And it seemed
    to work; they didn't re-start nuclear weapons program
    for a whole year or so. In the meantime, we fed them
    when they were starving, and put oil in their stoves
    when they were freezing.

    In a recent visit to Norway, I engaged in a really fun
    debate with my cousin's son, a student at a Norwegian
    University. I was lectured to by this thankless squirt
    about the American "Empire", and scolded about
    dropping the atomic bomb on the Japanese. I reminded
    him that empires usually keep the stuff they take; we
    don't, and back in 1945 most Norwegians thought
    dropping ANY kind of bomb on Germany or Japan was
    a good idea. I also reminded him that my uncle, his
    grandfather, and others in our family spent a significant
    time in Sachsenhausen concentration camp, courtesy of
    the Germans, and they didn't all survive. I further
    reminded him that if it wasn't for the "American Empire"
    he would probably be speaking German or Russian.

    Sorry about the rambling, but I just took an unofficial
    poll here at our house, and we don't seem to like anyone......
  2. 5 Comments

  3. by   oramar
    I saw a comedian on Jon Stewart show. He said the French have a history of doing anything their enemies want them to do and and refusing to do anything their friends want them to do. It was so right on I had to laugh.
    Last edit by oramar on Feb 7, '03
  4. by   JonRN
    Q. Why don't they have fireworks in France?

    A. Every time one goes off everyone surrenders.

    I could care less what they think of us. I love this guy, he tells it like it is. I have also been there done that.
  5. by   Hardknox
    A new bumper sticker:

    First Iraq, next France.
  6. by   JedsMom
    We took the same poll at our house and came to the same conclusion!! Love how he said it.
  7. by   lynnintn
    I have to agree with Mr. Galloway; of course, no one but England "likes" us; unless they need some kind of help, that is.

    IMO, when your mission/goal is maintaining world peace, wiping out terrorism, inhumanities, despotism, most of the world probably won't like you. But they will, for the most part, respect you.