Patterico's Pontifications

2/15/2009

What Makes a Warrior?

Filed under: General — Jack Dunphy @ 4:31 pm



[Guest post by Jack Dunphy]

As the debate continues over the political and economic courses America will follow, take a few minutes to be reminded of how our country has endured. Meet some of the men whose sacrifices have given us the freedom to have the debate at all.

–Jack Dunphy

65 Responses to “What Makes a Warrior?”

  1. One of us has a daughter in basic training right now, at Fort Jackson, South Carolina. This is the site for photographs of her training unit. So far they only have the pictures for Week 1 (out of 10) posted, but she’s just finished Week 4.

    The proud father Dana (556f76)

  2. God Love them. Every one of them!

    Edward (996c34)

  3. Thank you, Jack.
    For helping us to remember.

    Fear the day when we can’t answer the question:
    Where do we find such men?

    AD - RtR/OS (a4db8f)

  4. And women! My daughter just returned to her stateside post after a 15 month deployment to Iraq.

    John Hitchcock (fb941d)

  5. I find it utterly annoying when NFL commentators continually refer to the players as warriors. The term becomes a travesty in the hands of dolts who equate tumbling and fumbling after a bit of pigskin with being a warrior and performing the heroic.

    The Proud father Dana and John Hitchcock, both of you are an encouragement as my youngest just met with a recruiter. And both your daughters do women everywhere proud (men, too, but you get my point).

    Dana (137151)

  6. No offense meant John, I was speaking generically.

    AD - RtR/OS (a4db8f)

  7. Our kids who do not serve are missing something they don’t even know they are missing. We had a shared experience through the draft for 40 years. I know the military doesn’t want a draft and I understand but it is a shame that we don’t have universal training with the reserve component. I kept hoping a couple of my kids would go in but none did. They don’t know what they have lost.

    Mike K (2cf494)

  8. Dearest other Dana: Tell your youngest that he can do it! We get letters almost every day from PFC Pico telling us about basic, and she regards it almost as an adventure.

    If you look at the pictures of the first week, you’ll see recruits rappelling down the Victory Tower. She said it was so much fun she asked her drill sergeant if she could go again!

    The proud father Dana (556f76)

  9. They get to do things in Basic that the nannies have sanitized out of the public-education experience, and it’s fun.

    AD - RtR/OS (a4db8f)

  10. I suppose you mean that anyone who disagrees with you on economics or politics or an admixture of the two simply hates America.
    My, my. Other than that, your point is?
    What’s that bit about the last refuge of a scoundrel?

    Larry Reilly (45e7a4)

  11. Why is it that Leftists have no sense of tact or decorum?

    JD (c2765f)

  12. Yeah, that really came out of left field.

    John Hitchcock (fb941d)

  13. I’m deeply grateful to all the men and women willing to make the ultimate sacrifice to keep us safe from attack.

    But when it comes to our right to debate, I’ll thank the Constitution, not the military, for protecting that.

    Why do so many Americans like to repeat the obviously false meme that the military protects free speech? It doesn’t. It keeps us safe, and we should all be deeply grateful for that.

    In fact, one thing that keeps our civil rights intact is the civilian rule over the military, not vice versa.

    Hax Vobiscum (8cb4c3)

  14. JH,
    My daughter just returned to her stateside post after a 15 month deployment to Iraq.

    Congratulations to your daughter, and to you!

    Bradley J. Fikes (0ea407)

  15. Completely tone deaf asshats …

    JD (c2765f)

  16. Hax, do you really have to try to pick a fight in this thread? The fact members of the military have given the supreme sacrifice to keep this nation safe, protecting our Constitution, means they have fought to protect your right to demean their sacrifice.

    John Hitchcock (fb941d)

  17. Without the military, our Constitution wouldn’t have anything to defend it from countries where the freedoms we enjoy are considered the vices of our society–countries that would not be inclined to preserve those freedoms if they ever overtook us. So, yes, the military does protect our freedoms.

    Alan (551a6d)

  18. Hax, it’s not an either/or choice.

    I thank the Constitution for protecting our rights.

    I thank the military for protecting our Constitution.

    Bradley J. Fikes (0ea407)

  19. FWIW, and to be clear, my prior comment in no way referred to Senor Fikes, who is most certainly not an asshat.

    JD (c2765f)

  20. Let me slightly amend #2:

    I thank the military for protecting our right to have a Constitution.

    Bradley J. Fikes (0ea407)

  21. John #17: yes, he does need to pick a fight. He can’t deal with the other thread, so he needs to speak Troof to Powder on this one.

    Instead of just thanking parents with children in harm’s way for their sacrifices.

    Eric Blair (ee54a5)

  22. The face of my business card contains a representation of the flag,
    the back of the card carries this quote from Adm. Jeremiah Denton, USN(Ret):

    It is the soldier, not the reporter,
    Who has given us freedom of the press.
    It is the soldier, not the poet,
    Who has given us freedom of speech.
    It is the soldier, not the campus organizer,
    Who has given us the freedom to demonstrate.
    It is the soldier,
    Who salutes the flag,
    Who serves beneath the flag,
    And whose coffin is draped by the flag,
    Who allows the protester to burn the flag.

    AD - RtR/OS (a4db8f)

  23. AD, that is painful to read. But thank you for putting that there.

    John Hitchcock (fb941d)

  24. No Problem.
    It is my pleasure to honor those who have (also) served.

    AD - RtR/OS (a4db8f)

  25. What’s that bit about the last refuge of a scoundrel?

    Mawy’s still a little girl, so we have to let her indulge in her little fantasy life once in awhile. Mawy, does Malibu Barbi still think Math is hard? Which Jonas brother do you like the most, Mawy?

    I”ve been reading Medal of Honor Winners – In Their Own Words. Great read.

    Dmac (49b16c)

  26. I am in awe of these people and I thank them for their service.

    Joe (dcebbd)

  27. #2 Bradley J. Fikes:

    Let me slightly amend #2:

    I actually prefer your first wording: our military is a living, breathing embodiment of our Constitution.

    In no other place in the world, or at any other time in history has as large and capable a military force been raised without the fear of such a force overthrowing the government that raised it.

    That complacency, or lack of trepidation is possible only because our military’s fealty is to a set of ideas and ideals~namely, our Constitution. Unlike like this totally clueless believes,

    In fact, one thing that keeps our civil rights intact is the civilian rule over the military, not vice versa.

    it isn’t “civilian rule over the military hat keeps our civil rights intact, but our military’s commitment to civilian rule over the military that keeps our civil rights intact.

    EW1(SG) (e27928)

  28. Hmmm…dropped a quotation mark here on the floor that was meant to go above. I’ll stick it here:

    so you can paste it in the appropriate place.

    EW1(SG) (e27928)

  29. Troll at Comment #14,

    It’s not entirely your fault because our host also confused the issue by calling our soldiers “warriors”. The hallmark of the soldier is discipline. He submits to, dies and gets crippled for, and worst of all kills for, people not worthy to shine his boots. Or, as Nietzsche put it, “The nobility of the slave is defiance, the nobility of the soldier is obedience”.

    nk (a12124)

  30. nk, the Army has BCT and WTC. BCT, Basic Combat Training, is for civilians just learning to be soldiers. WTC, Warrior Transition Course, is for former military or current other-than-Army re-enlisting into the Army.

    John Hitchcock (fb941d)

  31. One other point about the greatness of the Men and Women of the U.S.Military…

    In every conflict of the 20th-Century, when an advancing army is spotted, the civilian populace flees from that army; unless they recognize that army as from the United States, and they run to embrace it.

    AD - RtR/OS (a4db8f)

  32. Why do so many Americans like to repeat the obviously false meme that the military protects free speech? It doesn’t. It keeps us safe, and we should all be deeply grateful for that.

    Funny, nowhere in the oath of enlistment nor the oath of office for commissioning does either mention keeping people safe. I do seem to recall swearing to uphold and defend the Constitution, tho.

    XBradTC (1d8be2)

  33. You seem surprised that the person who made that comment didn’t know a bloody thing about the military oath.

    Actually, I’m sure you aren’t surprised.

    And thank you for your service. I mean that sincerely.

    Eric Blair (ec334b)

  34. As a former Infantryman and eternal student, i would like to answer Dr. Samuel Johnson’s remark that “patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel” by pointing out that “benefit of clergy” was one of the first and “I only wanted to do good” comes well before “the last refuge of a scoundrel. No thanks for my service please. I did not serve for your thanks -no matter how heartfelt.

    Longwalker (996c34)

  35. To late to write – that should be a capital “i” in the first line. Patterico, is it practical to add “spellcheck” to the Leave a comment section?

    Longwalker (996c34)

  36. Why do so many Americans like to repeat the obviously false meme that the military protects free speech? It doesn’t. It keeps us safe, and we should all be deeply grateful for that.

    Clueless, as usual. Ask the French who were alive in 1940 how well their constitution protected their freedom.

    I was talking to my brother-in-law last night over wine. He retired as a Marine colonel and worked for a while for an aircraft company. He was telling a story about a trip he took one time with another executive of that company. They had a couple of bottles of wine one night and the subject of retired officers working for defense contractors came up. The usual cliches about military members being afraid of competition in the outside world and the other crap that is often thought but unspoken were brought up. My brother-in-law noted with satisfaction that he is now head of his own $40 million a year company and the other guy, who disdained ex-military when he had had enough wine to tell the truth, retired without ever making vice-president of the company they both worked for.

    The lefties and their fantasies are even worse. They simply don’t understand. Some of their fantasies about the military can be seen in the movie American Beauty.

    Mike K (2cf494)

  37. No thanks for my service please. I did not serve for your thanks -no matter how heartfelt.

    Comment by Longwalker — 2/16/2009 @ 12:20 am

    Nor did I, but surprisingly after many years I have discovered a worthy ‘source’ of gratitude- from my fellow vets. I work for the VA, and scoff or smirk at that as you may, the gratitude that they heap upon me and my fellow vet/care providers is awe-inspring and humbling.
    “Thank you for your service’ seems to have become like “God Bless you’ when some one sneezes especially when tossed in before some diatribe.
    If you didn’t serve, Man up, state it and your position on the issue. And if you’re afriad you’ll come across like a /sarc on/ weenie /s/ don’t worry, we understand.

    pitchforksntorches (4dd8c4)

  38. #38 Mike K:

    military members being afraid of competition in the outside world and the other crap

    That thought always cracks me up!

    Competition doesn’t get much more fierce than when large scale use of weapons is introduced.

    EW1(SG) (e27928)

  39. Well, when I thank servicemen and servicewomen for that service, it is not a political statement. I also don’t mean to give offense.

    I do think that, over the past fifteen or more years, people in the service have not been appreciated by regular citizens. My intent has always been to honor that service.

    Even when the person in the service is someone with whom I don’t agree politically, like (ugh) John Kerry or (double ugh) Jack Murtha.

    They both have done more for their country than I have.

    So again, my statement was not meant to make anything trivial. What I hate is the “I support the troops, but…” business. I have never done that, and never will.

    Again, no intent to give offense here.

    Eric Blair (ec334b)

  40. Why do so many Americans like to repeat the obviously false meme that the military protects free speech?

    With all due respect to our host, does this comment not make a perfect representation of the type of idiocy that passes for discussion from this Troll?

    Dmac (49b16c)

  41. Or as Eric would put it, “just asking questions.”

    Dmac (49b16c)

  42. Oh, give credit where credit is due, Dmac:

    That approach was championed most recently by the 9-11 Troofers, and used by HV here.

    Eric Blair (ec334b)

  43. An intellectual coward is the best description I’ve seen yet regarding this POS. A post which entails nothing but a rememberance and appreciation for our citizens in uniform, yet the monkey predictably comes along and flings the poo from it’s cage.

    Dmac (49b16c)

  44. Here’s the opinion of a Marxist reporter who also seems to be objective, about our military and how smart they are.

    I’m phobically allergic to the conservative Republican types the military is rife with, but I’ve only been in country four months and already I hate liberals. There’s plenty of ugliness to report in Iraq (as there are thousands of stories of hope and headway)–and the U.S. military certainly isn’t beyond reproach. Nobody’s telling you to report on one side or the other. But manipulating the truth because of your own personal biases is wretched and works in the face of progress. The other end of the political spectrum disregards you, Dahr, and now I know why. I thought it was because you’re a liar–but you aren’t. You don’t have enough backbone to be a liar. You’re a craven obfuscationist, intent on promoting your agenda at the cost of a menagerie of much braver men and women.

    Pretty interesting piece.

    Mike K (2cf494)

  45. In no other place in the world, or at any other time in history has as large and capable a military force been raised without the fear of such a force overthrowing the government that raised it.

    Point understood and accepted.

    Bradley J. Fikes, C.O.R., who wants DRJ back! (0ea407)

  46. Two examples of how those from other countries appreciate the US military sometimes more than a number of our fellow citizens:
    (1) I went to Berlin with my Dad on the troop train in 1977. We were able to go to the east and west side which was such a stark contrast. While in the western sector we were at the site where a bombed out church was left standing as a reminder. A German woman in her seventies approached us and asked if we were American. When we replied yes she said in good English “I want to say thanks for what your country did for the West Berliners. We will never forget”
    (2) While stationed in Okinawa I worked with a couple of 50 something Okinawan women. One of them recounted the US occupation after the battle of Okinawa. As an adult she wasn’t quite 5 foot tall so one can imagine how tiny she was as a five year old. Her grandfather believed the Japanese propaganda about the GIs being evil and so on. As she told of her first encounter her eyes widened and she talked of “how big” he looked. He gave her and her siblings Hersey’s chocolate bars which they hid so the Grandfather wouldn’t know. Nothing but affection for the GIs some 50 years later.
    Unfortunately, we have to relearn that lesson every couple of generations.

    And I understand Longwalker’s modesty. Almost every vet you meet always has stories about “this one guy or gal” who stepped up in ways they never did. Listen to the former POWs or MOH recipients and you get this even from them. It is what the group accomplished that matters most.

    voiceofreason2 (590c85)

  47. On the subject of appreciating the US military, I saw a piece a couple of months ago about a young Australian soldier. He talked to his father about how he envied the Americans their professionalism. Here is the letter.

    Note the automatic negative comments after.

    Mike K (2cf494)

  48. Remember Pearl Harbor — Keep America Alert!

    America’s oldest living Medal of Honor recipient, living his 100th year is former enlisted Chief Petty Officer, Aviation Chief Ordnanceman (ACOM), later wartime commissioned Lieutenant John W. Finn, U. S. Navy (Ret.). He is also the last surviving Medal of Honor, “The Day of Infamy”, Japanese Attack on the Hawaiian Islands, Naval Air Station, Kaneohe Bay, Oahu, Territory of Hawaii, 7 December 1941.

    ‘Navy Centenarian Sailor’, 103 year old, former enlisted Chief Petty Officer, Aviation Chief Radioman (ACRM, Combat Aircrewman), later wartime commissioned Chief Warrant Officer Julio ‘Jay’ Ereneta, U. S. Navy (Ret.), is a thirty year career veteran of World War One and World War Two. He first flew aircrewman in August 1922; flew rearseat Radioman/Gunner (1920s/1930s) in the tactical air squadrons of the Navy’s first aircraft carriers, USS LANGLEY (CV-1) and USS LEXINGTON (CV-2).

    Visit my photo album tribute to these veteran shipmates:

    http://news.webshots.com/album/123286873BFAAiq
    http://news.webshots.com/album/141695570BONFYl

    San Diego, California

    TetVet68 (6e5200)

  49. What makes a Warrior?
    Courage.
    Discipline.
    Love for country.
    Knowledge.
    Leadership.
    Sacrifice.
    Faith in God.
    I am so proud of these great men and women who give so much to protect freedom and democracy. May God bless them.

    Emperor7 (1b037c)

  50. Here is a powerful story of Korea and the famous “class of ’50” that was sent into battle without additional training three weeks after they graduated from West Point.

    Mike K (2cf494)

  51. As it happens, Fort Jackson had a reduced schedule for BCT today, and PFC Pico got a five-minute phone call home. No one was at home, so she called my cell at work.

    Her platoon spent a good part of last week on the rifle range, and she said that she has already achieved a pretty close grouping on the target with her M16-A2.

    They gave my baby girl a gun — and bullets! Be afraid!

    The proud father Dana (556f76)

  52. Comment by The proud father Dana — 2/16/2009 @ 3:28 pm
    Hope she gets to shoot me some terrorists. 🙂
    I am happy for you, proud father Dana.

    Emperor7 (1b037c)

  53. Notice how Hacks disappeared?

    JD (a69124)

  54. Comment by Emperor7 — 2/16/2009 @ 12:21 pm

    Nice comment, Emperor7. Made me smile–thanks.

    no one you know (1ebbb1)

  55. Comment by no one you know — 2/16/2009 @ 4:45 pm
    Glad you liked it me-lady. The least we can do is to put differences aside and honor those to whom honor is due. It’s really disheartening that some saw it as another opportunity to make partisan comments that seek to diminish the value and sacrifice of these brave soldiers. This thread should be about honoring our service men and women on harms way. And to offer a word of prayer for them.

    Emperor7 (0c8c2c)

  56. Comment by The proud father Dana — 2/16/2009 @ 3:28 pm

    One of the great satisfactions that I receive is to take someone to the range who has never handled firearms before, and after suitable instruction, see the great smile on their face as they punch holes in paper, and listen to them exclaim how much fun it is.

    I am sure that we have nothing to fear from Daddy’s Little Girl, as none of us would represent a threat to her. Plus, it is never good to get into a argument with someone possessing automatic weapons.

    AD - RtR/OS (be6a2d)

  57. This thread should be about honoring our service men and women on harms way. And to offer a word of prayer for them.

    Comment by Emperor7 — 2/16/2009 @ 5:20 pm

    True indeed. And for their parents, who suffer patiently and wait for them to return. Thanks to Dana and to John Hitchcock and all the other parents who have children and other relatives fighting for this country, and for others’.

    no one you know (1ebbb1)

  58. NOYK, let me clarify, mine met with the recruiter last week and is now reading through a lot of material and trying to decide exactly which branch, etc. (I’m just biting my tongue and saying my prayers.)

    Dana (137151)

  59. Just a slight difference between the adjective-laden Dana and the artistic Dana. 😉

    John Hitchcock (fb941d)

  60. NOYK, let me clarify, mine met with the recruiter last week and is now reading through a lot of material and trying to decide exactly which branch, etc. (I’m just biting my tongue and saying my prayers.)

    Comment by Dana — 2/16/2009 @ 6:00 pm

    John’s right, of course – should have clarified which Dana I meant. Am sure, the adjectiveless Dana ( 🙂 ) that this is nerve-wracking for you. Which branches is she leaning toward at this point?

    no one you know (1ebbb1)

  61. #61, I didn’t want NOYK to inadvertently lump my kid in with Adjective Laden’s daughter who is already honorably serving. I like things to be kept straight. But thanks.

    Dana (137151)

  62. Comment by Dana — 2/16/2009 @ 6:11 pm

    So, Dana, has your daughter been thinking of service for a while now? Which of the branches does she seem partial to at this point (if she’s shared that)…?

    no one you know (1ebbb1)

  63. Dana,
    Our three generations of Naval service aside here…Go Navy!

    pitchforksntorches (4dd8c4)


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