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55
54
Proud Not much reason to be proud
Debate Score:109
Arguments:85
Total Votes:123
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 Proud (42)
 
 Not much reason to be proud (43)

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PungSviti(552) pic



How proud can one be of the soldiers partaking in the Iraq War

I guess most of you know about this video by now. If you dont- take a look

http://www.collateralmurder.com/

Proud

Side Score: 55
VS.

Not much reason to be proud

Side Score: 54
5 points

It is important that the victim never be blamed.

The way one feels about soldiers in general needs to be separated completely from how one feels about a war, and even how one feels about a specific soldier who commits an atrocity.

I disagree completely with the Iraq war. I disagree completely with many things the military does.

But soldiers do a hard job, and do not enjoy the freedoms in their line of work that most do in theirs.

If I have a boss who wants me to do something I am morally against, I have all kinds of protections and freedoms, and it is up to me whether I do this thing or not, I can be blamed.

I do not believe one can ever blame a soldier. One does not have to idolize soldiers, but they should be respected, and it should be understood that any blame, if there is to be blame, be placed where it belongs,

not on the soldiers, but on the ones deciding what the soldiers are to do.

It does no one any good to blame someone who has little to no choice in the matter, and who more often than not in the case of soldiers, have no idea what they are or are not blowing up like in this instance. They are told to do something, and they do it, generally they do it quite well.

So it's okay not to be proud of a war in general, even in my case, I actually hate that war and truly believe it to be a wicked waste of time and resources to line the pockets of a few.

But I do think that one should be proud of the job our military has done in every war, just or unjust, win or lose, in the history of our country.

Whether the specific cause is just, one cannot argue that the majority of the soldiers believe it to be just, and the majority act in such a way that it would be difficult for the average human to mimic.

Side: Proud
PungSviti(552) Disputed
2 points

My problem with this automatic respect for soldiers is that it allows very dumb people who have a hard time earning respect, to get it easilly just if they are willing to take such a job that needs a flexible morality and willingness to do outrageous things (like the video shows)

The Milgram experiment shows us that about 65% of our population is willing to do immoral things as long as an authority figure tells them that it is right.

I think this automatic respect for soldiers is exactly that and helps governments do immoral things.

Side: shamefull
NVYN(289) Disputed
1 point

My problem with this automatic respect for soldiers is that it allows very dumb people who have a hard time earning respect, to get it easilly just if they are willing to take such a job that needs a flexible morality and willingness to do outrageous things (like the video shows)

This "flexible morality and willingness to do outrageous things" is protecting the freedom of all Americans. You sit in your comfortable home and you frown upon their actions, but you fail to realize that without them, you're sitting ducks against a world full of those who will not hesitate to rob you of your freedoms.

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I think this automatic respect for soldiers is exactly that and helps governments do immoral things

Your government (in any democratic system) is supposed to be representing the will of the people. If you're looking for someone to blame, take a long hard look in the mirror! You (the people) can pull those soldiers out of Iraq if you really want to. Don't just sit there and point your fingers in the general direction of those doing the most honorable of jobs (risking their lives). Having said that, those who break the rules of ethics and honor in their lives should be individually chastized.

Side: Proud
iamdavidh(4856) Disputed
1 point

I'm not sure how you are looking at this situation.

It seems to me, that this video has maybe convinced you that every soldier's outing consists of shooting people they should not have shot.

I would think that one would be more understanding of human nature, especially considering what you know of Milligram's experiment.

So then if it has been shown that even the general population is more likely to obey orders when given by an authority figure, wouldn't one with military training be even more likely to follow orders? A large part of their training is specifically that from my understanding.

If it is shown, as it has been, that following orders is natural, how can you blame a human for being human?

I'm afraid your blame is misdirected.

Yes, there will always be individual cases of individual soldiers doing the wrong thing.

Just as there are individual cases of individual citizens doing the wrong thing.

Do you blame every human alive for say a rape case in Houston?

How can you blame all soldiers if one acts on their own?

And if they are not acting on their own, but are carrying out an order, knowing that this is not only human nature, but it is also what they are trained to do, and also that they face court marshal if they do not carry out an order,

how can you possibly blame them?

You are wasting your disappointment I'm afraid. You can blame every soldier on earth, you can dislike every soldier on earth, you can protest every soldier on earth, and it would be no different than being angry at a dog whose owner didn't house train it.

Nothing at all changes by your disapproval.

The only way to change the way soldiers carry out orders, is to change the orders.

Side: Proud
2 points

We are at war, whether we like it or not. We can shun them like we did with Vietnam (which we lost), or we can praise them like we did during the World Wars (which we won).

Side: Proud
PungSviti(552) Disputed
2 points

Yeah, but what has to be taken into account is that World War II was a righteous war, that was not instigated by the US, while both the Vietnam War and Iraq War where instigated by the Us on very week grounds (that later on where found to be totally false)

Side: shamefull
TERMINATOR(6779) Disputed
1 point

The veracity of conspiracy theorists' claims that 9/11 was an American aggression is disputable.

Side: Proud
TERMINATOR(6779) Disputed
1 point

Who are you to compare one war to another and call one righteous and the other not?

Side: Proud
2 points

How can one not be proud? They are serving their country, fighting for the freedom of their countries of origin. One has to be proud of them, you can decide to feel shame towards those that start the war. Not the soldiers that defend their country.

Side: Proud
PungSviti(552) Disputed
1 point

The soldiers in Iraq arent "defending their country" (not even Orwell could have come up with such newspeak)

Iraq posed no threat to the US before the war.

Like I said to Iamdavidh:

My problem with this automatic respect for soldiers is that it allows very dumb people who have a hard time earning respect, to get it easilly just if they are willing to take such a job that needs a flexible morality and willingness to do outrageous things (like the video shows)

The Milgram experiment shows us that about 65% of our population is willing to do immoral things as long as an authority figure tells them that it is right.

I think this automatic respect for soldiers is exactly that and helps governments do immoral things.

Offcourse the decission makers deserve the most blame though. And I am not saying that all soldiers are inherently bad - I am saying that they in no way deserve respect for partaking in wrongfull wars.

Side: shamefull
NVYN(289) Disputed
1 point

Iraq posed no threat to the US before the war

What would constitute a threat to you?

Your neighbors knocking on the door with automatic weapons and refusing you access to necessary freedoms or

Your neighbors stockpiling automatic weapons and can use those against you and refuse you access to necessary freedoms any time they choose

.

Think about this:

If you didn't think it was a righteous war at the very beginning, before the soldiers were committed into Iraq, why the fuck didn't you stop the whole thing?

Side: Proud
2 points

My bro in law just came home from Baghdad, when he joined, we were not at war. before b-rad(his nickname) left he he told the family "I chose to defend this country, i didnt choose to go to that hell hole. but if its to defend my country and my family, ill do anything for them." so im proud of him for going there with so much confidence.

Side: Proud
PungSviti(552) Disputed
3 points

I dont like telling you this concerning how close you are to this issue given that your brother served in the war - and I In no way mean to belittle your brother for I can only assume he is a nice person.

But I dont think he was defending your country, for as it has turned out Iraq didnt in any way pose a threat to the US. I think he was serving corporate interest and wild speculations by crazy people in office.

I also dont mean to belittle the fact that over 4000 American soldiers have died in the war, but that number is dwarfed by the 130000 Iraqis who have died in the same war. And Americans have no moral high ground to assume that those lifes where less worthy than the American ones.

Offcourse you are rightfully proud of your brother for being heroic and putting himself in harms way. My position is not that family´s shouldnt be proud of their kin when they do a hard job. My position is that this culture in America of automatically assuming soldiers are doing an honorable job and a moral thing only makes it easier for the psychopaths who make these senseless decisions to do so. So in other words, I question the assumption that "we should be proud of our soldiers" in general, not that family members are proud of their kin.

I think that the war was and is unlawfull, shamefull and that no one should be proud to have partaken in it.

On the other hand I am glad that your brother didnt get hurt and I hope that he didnt hurt anyone in the way that is illustrated in the video I put a link to at the top. I think that these "nintendo" devices soldiers use today to kill others make it very easy to de-attatch themselves to the evil they are doing.

Side: shamefull
NVYN(289) Disputed
0 points

"My position is that this culture in America of automatically assuming soldiers are doing an honorable job and a moral thing only makes it easier for the psychopaths who make these senseless decisions to do so."

I don't understand how you linked the 2 things there...

I mean how proud we feel towards soldiers has no bearings whatsoever on how easy it is to commit them to wars. The decision to commit soldiers to wars should never be made lightly, and if it was, you can lay the blames squarely on yourself and those in power, not the soldiers.

Side: Proud

Soldiers partaking in the Iraq War should be proud of the job that they are doing. The only people who should be shameful are those decisions makers.

Side: Proud
1 point

About the video:

"some of the men appear to have been armed..." - so they're armed.

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"...the behavior of nearly everyone was relaxed." - so not everyone were relaxed...

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As far as I can see, they were hostiles. What the hell is that guy hiding behind the wall at the corner holding an RPG for? Why is he hiding like that? You are in a warzone, don't go around holding weapons and hide behind buildings and expect to be treated like a civilized citizen.

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If I was there, I'd've done the same thing.

Side: Proud
PungSviti(552) Disputed
0 points

Why is he hiding like that? You are in a warzone, don't go around holding weapons and hide behind buildings and expect to be treated like a civilized citizen.

So you are suggesting that the best way to behave in a warzone is to be out in the open?

Weather what he was carrying a wepon or a camera, that is beside the issue - The issue is that the Apache pilots where acting like they where playing Nintendo - shooting everything in sight, and bragging about it - shooting a car that contained two children and a person trying to helpe the rauters reporter who was killed for carrying a camera.

If I was there, I'd've done the same thing.

well that makes you an evil immoral SOB

Side: shamefull
NVYN(289) Disputed
0 points

So you are suggesting that the best way to behave in a warzone is to be out in the open?

No, I suggest that if you act like a combatant and get shot, you should not blame your enemy or say that they've done something shameful.

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Weather what he was carrying a wepon or a camera, that is beside the issue - The issue is that the Apache pilots where acting like they where playing Nintendo - shooting everything in sight, and bragging about it

So the issue you have is that the soldiers are trying to enjoy their shitty job? You have an issue with the soldiers' use of language? You've just lost all credibility. If I'm an evil immoral SOB, it makes you a pathetic pussy. I'm glad the armed forces aren't full of weak asses like you. You're more likely to praise the enemy while he bip you up the bip.

Side: Proud
1 point

Despite how many feel about the war, the mass majority of troops in the fight are doing it for reasons that they find legitimate and noble. They are doing it to protect us and our freedoms. What we do know about Iraq is that al-Qaeda is currently there and that many insurgents still run rampant. Whether the Iraqi military is truly ready to take over or not is a matter of opinion.

What we do know is that in a war, the goal is to win with as few casualties on OUR side. The only way to do this is to eliminate all possible threats. War is War. No one ever said it had to be pretty.

What individual soldiers do may be an atrocity (such as rape or purposeful killing of non-threatening civilians), but that does not reflect the entire military.

Air raids and fire fights are part of War. They are done to to reach victory.

Now, if you have a problem with a soldier doing what he must to win this war, than I understand. But if you deviate from the fact that it is for victory, your reason is unjustified.

Side: Proud
PungSviti(552) Disputed
1 point

There are no "al kaida" in Iraq to speak of. The Taliban and Saddam Hussains Iraqis are sworn enemy´s

I cant belive how stupid Americans can be - You just assume that because people are of the same color than they are from the same place.

I bet if you got into war with North Korea you would assume that you where also in war with Japan.

Side: Not much reason to be proud
ThePyg(6737) Disputed
1 point

While we have been successful in driving most of al-Qaeda from Iraq, that does not mean that we should just ignore that they are still existent

i'll ignore your insults, because I'm nice.

Side: Proud
1 point

I think it shows a lack of clear thinking when people blame the soldiers collectively for a war and then shame them. It is a more reasonable reaction to focus that anger upon the government and war criminals instead.

Side: Proud

Lets just say if for no other reason to be there we got rid of Saddam. Look at what he did. Here is a partial list.

1. Reprisal Against Dujail

On July 8, 1982, Saddam Hussein was visiting the town of Dujail (50 miles north of Baghdad) when a group of Dawa militants shot at his motorcade. In reprisal for this assassination attempt, the entire town was punished. More than 140 fighting-age men were apprehended and never heard from again. Approximately 1,500 other townspeople, including children, were rounded up and taken to prison, where many were tortured.

2 Anfal Campaign The purpose of the campaign was ostensibly to reassert Iraqi control over the area; however, the real goal was to permanently eliminate the Kurdish problem.

The campaign consisted of eight stages of assault, where up to 200,000 Iraqi troops attacked the area, rounded up civilians, and razed villages. Once rounded up, the civilians were divided into two groups: men from ages of about 13 to 70 and women, children, and elderly men. The men were then shot and buried in mass graves. The women, children, and elderly were taken to relocation camps where conditions were deplorable. In a few areas, especially areas that put up even a little resistance, everyone was killed.

Hundreds of thousands of Kurds fled the area, yet it is estimated that up to 182,000 were killed during the Anfal campaign. Many people consider the Anfal campaign an attempt at genocide.

3. Chemical Weapons Against Kurds

It is estimated that chemical weapons were used on approximately 40 Kurdish villages, with the largest of these attacks occurring on March 16, 1988 against the Kurdish town of Halabja.

Beginning in the morning on March 16, 1988 and continuing all night, the Iraqis rained down volley after volley of bombs filled with a deadly mixture of mustard gas and nerve agents on Halabja. Immediate effects of the chemicals included blindness, vomiting, blisters, convulsions, and asphyxiation. Approximately 5,000 women, men, and children died within days of the attacks. Long-term effects included permanent blindness, cancer, and birth defects. An estimated 10,000 lived, but live daily with the disfigurement and sicknesses from the chemical weapons.

Saddam Hussein's cousin, Ali Hassan al-Majid was directly in charge of the chemical attacks against the Kurds, earning him the epithet, "Chemical Ali."

So we know they had WMD's.

4. 4.Invasion of Kuwait

On August 2, 1990, Iraqi troops invaded the country of Kuwait. The invasion was induced by oil and a large war debt that Iraq owed Kuwait. The six-week, Persian Gulf War pushed Iraqi troops out of Kuwait in 1991. As the Iraqi troops retreated, they were ordered to light oil wells on fire. Over 700 oil wells were lit, burning over one billion barrels of oil and releasing dangerous pollutants into the air. Oil pipelines were also opened, releasing 10 million barrels of oil into the Gulf and tainting many water sources. The fires and the oil spill created a huge environmental disaster.

5.Shiite Uprising & the Marsh Arabs

At the end of the Persian Gulf War in 1991, southern Shiites and northern Kurds rebelled against Hussein's regime. In retaliation, Iraq brutally suppressed the uprising, killing thousands of Shiites in southern Iraq.

As supposed punishment for supporting the Shiite rebellion in 1991, Saddam Hussein's regime killed thousands of Marsh Arabs, bulldozed their villages, and systematically ruined their way of life. The Marsh Arabs had lived for thousands of years in the marshlands located in southern Iraq until Iraq built a network of canals, dykes, and dams to divert water away from the marshes. The Marsh Arabs were forced to flee the area, their way of life decimated.

By 2002, satellite images showed only 7 to 10 percent of the marshlands left. Saddam Hussein is blamed for creating an environmental disaster.

Side: Proud
0 points

I can never be ashamed of the military that risks their lives to defend my life. I am so proud of our marines and army and navy and air force for protecting this great nation. :)

Side: Proud
PungSviti(552) Disputed
1 point

I would understand that if the army actually was protecting your nation in this war. The truth is that the army was protecting corporate interest that is not neccisarilly much aligned with the public interest of Americans.

Side: Not much reason to be proud
NVYN(289) Disputed
0 points

I wouldn't necessarily distance myself from any corporate interest in haste. Corporate interests and public interests usually go hand in hand. The corporates are made up of people, families, lives.

Side: Proud
0 points

You should be proud of them. They are doing something good for the country without getting payed. They are doing it of the kindness of their hearts-they are not being forced to. Also, if you aren't proud, they might not want to do any thing like that again. They took a risk of dying, to save us.

Side: Proud
Conro(767) Disputed
1 point

Have you heard of a military pension? Soldiers ARE paid. Some people go to the military to pay for college.

"They took a risk of dying, to save us."

They took a risk of dying, yes, but not to save us. Save us from who? To save us from the Taliban (who weren't in Iraq) or the WMD's (also not in Iraq)?

Or perhaps it was to save the people of Iraq from an oppressive government. Perhaps we save them by killing over a hundred thousand innocent civilians, and only nineteen thousand violent insurgents (Check the Iraq Body Count). Perhaps we save them by firebombing cities, destroying businesses, hospitals, government offices, and schools among others. Perhaps we save them by torturing the "terrorists" who we pick up off the street, who were just there, not necessarily committing crimes (Abu Ghraib). Or perhaps by installing a corrupt and inefficient government in Iraq.

Iraq has become more democratic, yes, and women are better off, but sometimes I really begin to doubt the methods used by our military to achieve peace. We can't hope to force people [violently] to change their culture. It must begin to change only when the people want to change, and cannot be forced on a people. It can only change with peaceful diplomacy.

Side: Not much reason to be proud
Anthonyhook(178) Disputed
1 point

So we know they had WMD's.

Chemical Weapons Against Kurds

It is estimated that chemical weapons were used on approximately 40 Kurdish villages, with the largest of these attacks occurring on March 16, 1988 against the Kurdish town of Halabja.

Beginning in the morning on March 16, 1988 and continuing all night, the Iraqis rained down volley after volley of bombs filled with a deadly mixture of mustard gas and nerve agents on Halabja. Immediate effects of the chemicals included blindness, vomiting, blisters, convulsions, and asphyxiation. Approximately 5,000 women, men, and children died within days of the attacks. Long-term effects included permanent blindness, cancer, and birth defects. An estimated 10,000 lived, but live daily with the disfigurement and sicknesses from the chemical weapons.

Saddam Hussein's cousin, Ali Hassan al-Majid was directly in charge of the chemical attacks against the Kurds, earning him the epithet, "Chemical Ali."

Side: Proud
2 points

I think the use of the word shamefull is a very indignified word for any indivivual. Least of all soldiers who ment well in trying to protect the country.

I would rather say, 'not heros'.

It was not their choice to go to war and I dont want to see another generation of Vietnam veterans whose efforts went totally unoticed and are occasional spat on every now and then. Before I continue on with this argument I must clarify it was not their choice to go to war it was the poor choice of people like Bush, Cheyney, Rumfseld, they commited shamefull acts.

Statement: They are not heros.

They are not heros, because a hero is a righteous defender not a greedy oppressor. The Iraq war was totally uncalled for, we were lied to again and again, Iraq posed no threat to America and 9/11 had NOTHING TO DO WITH IT!

There is no clear reason as to why we were there and why we are still there, but people have a reason to believe that the war was created to pump revenue into Americas major oil industries (Bush happens to be the son of a major oil tycoon), a secret agreement with Israel to decimate middle-eastern enemies posing a threat to Israeli security and increase buisness among the many war related industries.

All reasons are for greedy cooperate controll, how can that be an honourable thing to fight for?

Side: shamefull
1 point

I have changed the statement from "shamefull" to "not much reason to be proud"

Shamefull is a bit strong when judging soldiers over all. I generally like for and against stands to be great opposites but in this one I went a bit to far. I was so disgusted by the video link I posted above that I felt at the time that this was justified.

About the actions of the Bush administration I still think what they did was not only shamefull but also criminal behavior, and I think they should be impeached

Side: Not much reason to be proud
NVYN(289) Disputed
1 point

Dilema: In life, there are many choices. If there were 2 choices available to you:

A) Do something good and get nothing for it.

B) Do something good and get plenty of financial gains as a result.

.

Which would you choose to do? Bear in mind that you have limited resources and cannot commit to both.

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If you're on a witchhunt, you're going to find a witch. But don't forget that America is bringing democracy to the world ;)

Side: Proud
smittydick(3) Disputed
1 point

This argument is based on dislike of the war. It has nothing to do with the unwanted leaving of home, family, and living in a desert with the military's idea of accommodations. So you do not like the war nor the people who started it. That was not the question.

Side: Proud
2 points

Concerning the bravery of US soldiers going into war. It got me thinking. So I looked up how many soldiers have been shipped over to Iraq in this war and got 1.6 million. Of those people 4300 have died. That means that one out of 372 dies. Now that is quite similar both in death rate and in work force on a large construction site (it is common for large construction sites to have at least one death over a period of 2-4 years while the production is going on and usually the work force is somwhere around 200-500 people depending on the size of the project). So the risk of going into Iraq (for American soldiers who have all sorts of super high-tech gadgets to distance themselves from the people they are killing -like in the video) is on average not more than working on a large construction site. (lets say building a dam)

So on average (and I want to stress ON AVERAGE - because some guys going to Iraq actually have jobs that are much more dangerous than others, and therfore are much braver) but again on average, US soldiers are not neccisarilly much braver than construction workers.

War is hell - And I dont want to belittle the psycological harm it can do to soldiers, but I think Americans highly overrate the bravery of their soldiers given how the odds are stacked with them (on average) with all the fine tools America builds for killing people from a distance.

Side: Not much reason to be proud
1 point

There's not much to say, really. The video speaks for itself.

There were indeed weapons present in the initial group, so the initial attack may have been justified. But shooting up the van full of unarmed civilians was clearly unjustified.

In any situation where you give a lot of guys highly advanced weapons and insulate them from the rule of law, you're going to have atrocities like this committed.

I don't think it's right to make the generalization that we should be ashamed of the soldiers serving in Iraq. I'm sure there are many who serve honorably. In any conflict as protracted as the one in Iraq has been, a certain number of incidents like this are probably inevitable. But I don't think Iraq is something we should be proud of either. War is an ugly business. It should not be celebrated. And we should never have gone into Iraq in the first place.

I'd like to end by reminding everyone that we're in the process of withdrawing from Iraq: http://media3.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/ content/graphic/2009/02/28/GR2009022800229.gif

Side: shamefull
1 point

My point wouldnt be that Americans should be ashamed of the soldiers that took part (and still do) in this war in general - It would rather be that the soldiers should themselves be asshamed to partake in such an unlawfull war. And the retoric that is upheld in America, that people should be "proud to serve their country" I think is phony. First of all, they arent serving their country - Your country posed no threat from Iraq - they are serving corporate interest, and very ill thought out corporate interest at that, because the whole place is now open to the Iran government which are a much tougher cookie to deal with in the future concerning this oil.

I think the feeling of being proud should be turned into anger against your government that put young people in harms way for this senseless war.

Side: shamefull
0 points

most of them didnt choose to go over in iraq. thats were big brother sent them

Side: shamefull
1 point

Why would you be proud to fight a war for your GOVERNMENT and not your PEOPLE.

That is the purpose of the US military. It is for the people to decide to go to war or not but, unfortunately that has been ignored for a long time.

Side: Not much reason to be proud
Fuck(29) Disputed
1 point

Fuck that.

You think that most Americans after 9/11 weren't seeking vengeance? Do you think that people wanted to sit back and mourn for a few months? They wanted blood. Thats just an example of a war that people wanted.

Side: Proud
PungSviti(552) Disputed
1 point

So if a group of lets say North Korean terrorists attacked Amercia you would find justification in that to attack, lets say china (because they look the same)

Side: Not much reason to be proud