Friday, October 25, 2019

A Recruiting Poster

Source: The Unz Review

Why You Should Stay the Hell Away From the American Military

By Fred Reed • OCTOBER 24, 2019 • 70 COMMENTS

Some advice: Don’t get shot in the face. I don't care what your friends tell you, it isn't a good idea. Further, avoid corneal transplants if you can. If you find a coupon for one, in a box of Cracker Jacks maybe, toss it. Transplants are miserable things. Unless you really need one. What am I talking about? Eyes, and losing them, and getting them back. On this, I am an accidental authority.

Long long ago, in a far galaxy, the United States was bringing democracy to Viet Nam, which had barely heard of it and didn't want it anyway. As an expression of their desire to be left alone, the locals spent several years shooting Americans. I was one of them: a young dumb Marine with little idea either where I was or why. But that was common in those days.

A large-caliber round, probably from a Russian 12.7mm heavy machine gun, came through the windshield of the truck I was driving. The bullet missed me, barely, because I had turned my head to look at a water buffalo in the paddy beside the road. Unfortunately the glass in front of the round had to go somewhere, in this case into my face. Not good. I didn’t like it, anyway.

So I got choppered to the Naval Support Activity hospital in Danang with the insides of my eyes filled with blood, which I didn't know because my eyelids were convulsively latched shut. An eye surgeon there did emergency iridectomies — removing a slice of the iris — so that my eyes wouldn't explode. He also determined that powdered glass had gone through my corneas, through the anterior chamber, through the lens, and parked itself in the vitreous, which is the marmalade that fills the back of the eye. It had not reached the retina, though they couldn’t tell at the time, which meant that I wasn’t necessarily going to be blind. Yet.

Two weeks followed of lying in a long ward of hideously wounded Marines. (I hope this part isn’t boring, but it explains what happened later.) My face was bandaged, but I remember well what the place sounded like. I heard stories. The two tank crewmen across the aisle from me, were burned over most of their bodies. An RPG had hit their tank, the cherry juice — hydraulic fluid, I mean — had cooked off, and cooked them too. The other two guys burned to death. It’s hard to get out of a tank filled with flame and smoke with your skin peeling off.

But that's neither here nor there, being merely among the routine fascinations of military life in those days. Anyway, every two hours a Vietnamese nurse came by and injected me with what felt like several quarts of penicillin. Perhaps I exaggerate in retrospect: Maybe it was only one quart. The reason was that if your eyes are full of blood, and decide to become infected, you are categorically, really and truly, beyond doubt, blind. After so much penicillin, my breath alone would have stopped the Black Death.

What saved me, the doctors speculated, was that the tremendous energy of the 12.7 round had instantaneously heated the glass powder — it wasn't much more than powder — and thus sterilized it. If a bullet is going to come through your windshield, make sure it has lots of energy.

Bear with me a bit more. I'm going to explain what happened so you will understand that eye surgeons are the best people on this or any other planet, and probably in league with spirits, because the things they do are clearly impossible.

After stops at the military hospital in Yokota, Japan, and a long flight in a C-141 Medevac bird in which the guy slung in the stretcher above me, full of tubes, died en route, I ended up in Bethesda Naval Hospital, Maryland, in the suburbs of Washington, DC. I spent a year there, and had the first eight of fourteen eye operations. (See what I mean about being in league with spirits? Any fool knows you can't cut an eye open that many times, sucking things out, sewing things in, and expect it to see. Well, they did, and it did. Magic, I tell you.)

Now, eyes are special parts. Ask any soldier what he most doesn't want, and he'll tell you being paralyzed, blinded, and castrated, probably in that order. Losing a leg is a nuisance. In fact, it's a royal, wretched, motingator of a nuisance, but that's all it is. No, you won't be a running back for the Steelers. But you can walk, sort of, chase girls, travel, be a biochemist. Not optimal, but you can adapt.

Eyes are different. On the eye ward, I watched the blind guys come in from the field. They curled up in bed and slept for days, barely ate, wouldn't talk much. I didn't so much do this because it wasn't clear that I was going to be blind. Once the blood cleared the doctors could see that I had good retinas and, though I was going to have a fine case of traumatic cataracts, those were fixable. This was not true of Ron Reester, though, who had a rifle grenade explode on the end of his rifle. His eyes were definitively jellied, and that was that. Then there was a kid from Tennessee, maybe eighteen, with both eyes gone and half his face. I was there when his betrothed, still a senior in high school, came to see him. It was almost enough to make me think that wars weren't such a hot idea.

It's funny how people adapt to being blind. Reester, also from Tennessee — the South got hit hard in Vietnam — came out of his depression after a few weeks and became something of a character. Clowning takes your mind off things, which is what you need most.

Please go to The Unz Review to read the entire article.

As of 2008 according to official US military archives, 58,220 US soldiers were killed in Vietnam, 75,000 severely disabled, 23,214 were 100% disabled, 5,283 lost limbs and 1,081 sustained multiple amputations. Of those killed, 61% were younger than 21 years old. 11,465 of those killed were younger than 20 years old.

As of July 7, 2018, there have been 2,372 U.S. military deaths in the War in Afghanistan. 1,856 of these deaths have been the result of hostile action. 20,320 American servicemembers have also been wounded in action during the war. In addition, there were 1,720 U.S. civilian contractor fatalities. And US soldiers still in Afghanistan continue to get wounded.

3 US Troops Wounded in Afghanistan Insider Attack

As of June 29, 2016 according to the U.S. Department of Defense casualty website, there were 4,424 total deaths (including both killed in action and non-hostile) and 31,952 wounded in action (WIA) as a result of the Iraq War.

News for October 26, 2019: US Defense Secretary Mark Esper says U.S. troops, armored vehicles are going to Syria oil fields.

The U.S. will send armored reinforcements into eastern Syria to "bolster defenses against a potential move by Islamic State militants (ISIS) on oil fields controlled by U.S.-backed Syrian Kurds," U.S. Defense Secretary Mark Esper said Friday. The US created ISIS so the US is not going to those oil fields to protect them from ISIS. The US is sending US soldiers to protect those oil fields from Syria, Russia and China. Let that sink in a bit especially if any of these soldiers are wounded.

Esper described the added force as "mechanized," which would likely means it will include tanks and other combat vehicles such as Bradley armored infantry carriers. This would introduce a new dimension to the U.S. military presence, which largely has been comprised of special operations forces not equipped with tanks or other armored vehicles. Get ready for more wounded US soldiers in Syria.


Operation Rolling Plunder

Related news for 29 October 2019:

Japan arrests four US marines for attacking police cars

Iraqi Defense Minister Says to US Military: 'You Have 4 Weeks to Leave’

You mean a young American would join the military then after being discharged would go to work for a mercenary outfit protecting oil?

What About the Wagner Group? …it's all about the OIL

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