A nation of Eloi, at home and abroad

While we put 51-year-old, five-foot-tall grandmothers in charge of violent criminals, we put 20-year-old soldiers defenselessly in the path of suicide bombers. How many times have I said that our soldiers in Iraq are being killed, not in the act of fighting and defeating the enemy, but in the act of being forced to expose themselves to the enemy like sitting ducks? Read this:

“Sitting ducks, that’s all we are,” a 20-year-old combat medic from Texas said to me as we watched Iraqi vehicles thread past the “Alert” sign and through the orange cones and concertina wire of a checkpoint last week. Later, when I asked the sergeant in charge of the platoon if he was enjoying himself, he responded, “Just hanging around waiting to get blown up.” This unit has suffered very high casualties, most from car bombs. If any soldiers in Iraq could be expected to be jumpy and trigger-happy, it is the grunts of central Anbar province. But as I watched them run their checkpoint, they were as thoroughly professional as ever. [“Checkpoint Iraq: A Tactic That Works,” Washington Post, 3/13/05.]

A correspondent writes: “When a culture is sick & dying, it is pervasive, it touches everything, even our poor boys overseas. I’m sick to my stomach over this situation.”

Posted by Lawrence Auster at March 12, 2005 11:14 AM | Send

Email entry

Email this entry to:

Your email address:

Message (optional):