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John's World: Viewers respond to Memorial Day comments
Jun 10, 2014
***Editor’s Note: John’s commentary that ran Memorial Day weekend generated quite a bit of response. Below is a transcript of that commentary, followed by viewer response…
John’s World Transcript: While this happens with depressing regularity now, I realized too late that last weekend was Memorial Day weekend. The 31st of May is still lodged in my mind I guess. At any rate, as a veteran I find great meaning in this annual commemoration. But I also think we could benefit from working to keep our memorials relevant. This March was a signal month for United States Armed Forces. For the first time in over a decade, there were no monthly combat fatalities for our troops. The fact this went largely unremarked by the media is unfortunate. Ending wars is no longer a joyous celebration, but a back page foreign policy story. Perhaps General MacArthur’s comment about old soldiers now applies to wars: They don’t end, they just fade away. We should have learned by now that modern conflict does not lend itself to World War II models of combat. Different criteria and logic should apply to the sobering decision to take up arms. From Korea and Vietnam to Iraq and Afghanistan, war simply doesn’t work out like it used to. This realist should restrain our impulse to use force to solve problems abroad – especially since we too often find out later we grossly misunderstand the cultural and historical context where we intervene. It is right to remember our honored dead. I think one way to salute fallen heroes is to make sure there are as few as possible by rededicating ourselves to a greater reluctance to spend lives too cheaply in the expectation of outdated and unrealistic results.
Viewer Response #1: Just want to say a big thanks to John Phipps for his commentary regarding our troops…that we should try to avoid in the future such a tragedy as these recent wars is exactly what people need to hear. I get tired of the parades, and thanking troops for "fighting for our freedom", as we continue to send more over to be maimed or killed for nothing. I left the Air Force in 1998 as a Major, because I saw that little of what the military was doing was defense. If we were truly endangered, every one of us should be fighting. My boy went to Afghanistan 3 times, saw much waste, and he got out. Eisenhower warned about the military-industrial complex. We would obviously be safer if we weren't antagonizing the world, but then there would be no money in it. So we have to keep scaring people, to justify more war, and now the surveillance state. "Voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is TELL THEM THEY ARE BEING ATTACKED, and denounce the peacemakers for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. IT WORKS THE SAME IN ANY COUNTRY." --Goering at the Nuremberg Trials. I opposed this last round of wars and as Goering predicted, my patriotism has been called into question. And I've been told I don't care about the troops. And yet thousands have been killed and maimed for no good reason. You would think if you cared about them, you would save them for when we were under direct attack, and again, then we should all take up arms. No more sending off somebody else's naïve kids to die. Anyway, thanks again for your spreading some sense, and letting me vent. Dale Jenne
Viewer Response #2: Local VFW closed down because the only members were WWII...Korea, Vietnam, Gulf, Iraq veterans were not as revered....not as proud…should teach arrogant politicians a lesson, one you have already learned. Darrell - Vietnam veteran
Viewer Response #3: Bravo! I couldn't agree more. Hopefully Ike's "industrial military complex" isn't too big a two-headed monster to reign in. Enjoy your show and your commentaries. Tom DeCarlo - Johannesburg, MI
Viewer Response #4: As a retired military service member with multiple tours of duty in war zones in addition to being a veteran I take issue with his liberal and incorrect views. The reason there is no longer a Soviet Union and the changes to China becoming a society that is embracing capitalism is the wars fought in Korea and Vietnam. We bankrupted them to the point where they had to change from internal pressures. Anyone who thinks that our interventions in Iraq and Afghanistan were a mistake are mistaken. The problem has always been the failure of the liberal establishment to support our troops and tying their hands when it comes to pursuing and killing the enemy. I do not know where Phipps served nor for how long. He is probably one of the National Guard troops who thought they could be a parasite and not have to ever serve in a war zone. Paul
Viewer Response #5: You are wasting your time working for US Farm Report. You should be sitting in the White House. As usual, you are the voice of reason and intelligence. Seldom do politicians make sense like you do. Gary Wanderwerf
Viewer Response #6: Brilliant commentary today on war on U.S. Farm Report. Chuck Zumbrun
Viewer Response #7: Comments on "War" today - absolutely spot on! Richard Fassino - Hailey, ID