Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Stop Loss

I recently made a bad comment which I then deleted off of a soldier's facebook page serving in Afghanistan. I agree that it was a bad comment. I agree that I shouldn't have done it. But it's a topic that we civilians need to get better educated on soon.

Right now, the US Military is beginning to look a lot like organized crime- the only way out is to leave horribly wounded or dead. Stop loss means that a 4 year commitment made in the wake of 9-11-2001 could easily mean that against your will you're still in the military in 2009, and on your fourth, fifth, or even sixth deployment. That is NOT what I consider to be a volunteer military anymore, although I'll admit it's drafting from those who choose to serve, it's still enforced servitude for bad pay and a horrible return on investment considering the risk includes the ultimate sacrifice.

I support the idea that one of the duties of government is the common defense. I understand that in Afghanistan, we have the danger of a certain minority sect regaining a foothold and then attacking us again, just as they did in 2001. I understand that the Islamic Reformation is taking a very dangerous turn- just as the Christian Reformation did in the 1500s and 1600s.

But isn't there a better way than just sending the same people over there again and again, breaking our contract with them through stop loss, until they die, are wounded physically and mentally, until we've used them up just like corporate America uses up human resources? How about the old idea of a no-man's land between radical Islam and the rest of the world- and enforce it like it was a jail instead, with NO CONTACT AT ALL between the Islamic world and the rest of us? Isn't that better than sacrificing yet another American life to this mess?

2 comments:

Royall said...

Was it the Taliban who attacked the World Trade Center?
Is our military operation doing anything to make the Taliban smaller?

The answer to both of these questions is obvious!

Ted Seeber said...

Royall- in my understanding of Islamic sects and the Islamic Reformation currently underway, the answer to your first question is YES. It was an ally of the Taliban that attacked the World Trade Center, not just on 9-11, but actually three times previous to that; 9-11 was just the *successful* attack. In addition to that there have been many other attacks on US and European embassies and Christian monasteries worldwide by this same group that goes by many names, but all of which hold to the theological concept of Sola Jihad.

The answer to the other question, is more objectively debatable and not at all obvious. We are doing some things that *may* make the Afghani Taliban smaller, but we are also doing many things that make them *larger*.

But both of these are beside the point. Say for a second (and I don't think this) that you agree with me on both these answers.

Stop loss is still a complete abuse of the trust a soldier has placed in his government. A private employer that broke an employment contract in that way would be facing, at the very least, the Bureau of Labor and Industries in a bankruptcy court. So who do you go to when the government breaks a contract with you?

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Oustside The Asylum by Ted Seeber is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.
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