Yesterday an Australian soldier was killed in
The media fuss that has followed the death of these unfortunate men is alarming, maudlin, parochial and lamentable. We seem surprised when this happens . . . I don't want to detract from the tragedy because these men were someone's husband, brother, uncle, father but in this instance, they were also combatants put in harm's way and by their own volition. Isn’t that the general idea? They’re trained to fight not just look good in a Dress Uniform! It’s the nature of the job. I wish tabloid TV and the anti-war lobby would realise this and focus on the dickheads that send our troops into frey's that aren't ours. (I'm speaking of Iraq here, I endorse our peacekeeping in Afghanistan which is where the whole attention of the Coalition of the Willing should be focussed to my mind!)
The military has become a convenient way to achieve free qualification, especially for enlisted personnel. Or, you can enrol in the
Peacekeeping, war, military policing and support for reconstruction is not a Sunday Picnic. It involves fighting, seeing sights you never want to see, taking risk, it’s not for the feint-hearted. Militia embarking on such sorties need a total education on what they’re getting into. Returning soldiers need proper debriefing, psychiatric assessment and ongoing support – sometimes for life.
In an effort to bolster dwindling interest in the armed forces, our Government in its wisdom is now recommending a try-before-you-buy program to recruit into the military. Yep, 1 year’s paid service to see if you like it! Not a bad plan . . . spend your gap year between school and tertiary education or gainful employment learning how to blow shit up and take over the world. (DrummerBoy managed to learn that with a bottle of vinegar and some pool chlorine but that's another story). The recruitment marketing even includes downloadable online gaming to encourage the young to pick up a rifle and fight for
Queen PM and country. Is it working? Absolutely. Extreme Battleships and Supreme Air Combat are giving our online gamers a taste of the real thing and recruitment is up for our young would be combatants. But this ain't no Halo pal . . this is war!
Another relative was on a pension long before retirement age after flying helicopters in
Whatever you think of the current conflicts where Australians are involved, it’s vital that when they come home the balance is maintained. It’s a job. They enlisted but we also need to be cogniscent of their mental state upon their return. It’s important that our military men and women are not demoralised by ongoing criticism of the conflict or left to rot in their own psychosis. It’s we who should take responsibility and our elected politicians that should be criticised. Whilst our soldiers should fight, navy should sail and fly boys must fly, we need to be judicious about the conflicts in which we get involved. Vote with your feet people . . .there’s an election coming up!