Saturday, May 14, 2011

American Values In a Global Climate

Plato said that one had to be dead if there was no more war. I agree, as men are always going to be self-interested, whether they recognize it or not. Even one's ideas about "God" are "self interested" claims, because this is how we define ourselves. People all define themselves by the groups that hold to their values, some knowing that this is a chosen value, while others less so.

Tonight, we watched "Black Hawk Down". Our military went into Somalia and fought against horrendous odds bravely and many were lost. One comment I will never forget was made by one of the Somalian warriors to a prisoner. He told the prisoner that irregardless of America's desire to promote democracy through gunfire, as a means to negotiation; Somalians believe that gunfire IS negotiation. Victory is only declared when their side has won against those that desire to change their culture. That was a sobering comment and made me wonder why we attempt to change these types of cultures.

The young men who represented our military were holding to their ideals of life and liberty and willing to fight to see that all people live free. This is the American ideal and they were defending not just their country's values, but protected each of their "buddies". They would not leave anyone behind, as they believed in the value of each indiviudal life! Their courage was amazing.

One wonders why we were in Somalia in the first place. Why were our men used in an environment that didn't seem to matter? Power does not seem to understand or value the costs to those that it holds under its command. It is an unusual person that understands and values the "little man" enough to not take lightly sending our men into harm's way. Our military are committed to serve any command, so it is imperative that our men in uniform be valued as to their life. They are fighting for our liberty.

When humanitarian aid is confiscated, why do Americans think that it is obligatory to follow up? Are we loyal to U.N. demands, and not our own Sovereignty? Or does American have some vested interest that the common American is unaware of?

 The movie portrayed that hunger creates hostilities between rivalling groups. So, is preventing hunger a means to create peace? Then, what about the dictators or the corruption in society that makes it impossible to claim "the humane"? These cultures are not prone to change, unless they are killed or their power is taken from them.

The honor code of Westpoint claims that fighting for the "right" is not tolerating those that are corrupt or are corrupting influences in a society! One "hero" at the end said that he was asked whether he sought to be a hero and he said that one doesn't seek to be a hero, that becoming a hero happens. Becoming a hero is the result of duty! It is doing one's job in the military.

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