Tuesday, June 26, 2007


Historical Perspective

Glenn Reynolds at Instapundit (and Rob over at Say Anything--one of NORTH Dakota's better blogs), points out this paragraph at Wikipedia regarding the planned invasion of Japan in 1946, Operation Downfall:

Nearly 500,000 Purple Heart medals were manufactured in anticipation of the casualties resulting from the invasion of Japan. To the present date, all the American military casualties of the sixty years following the end of World War II — including the Korean and Vietnam Wars — have not exceeded that number. In 2003, there were still 120,000 of these Purple Heart medals in stock. There are so many in surplus that combat units in Iraq and Afghanistan are able to keep Purple Hearts on-hand for immediate award to wounded soldiers on the field.

Over 60 years of warfare and we haven't run out of them yet. Kind of makes the current, breathless news coverage of casualties seem a bit overblown.


"Kind of makes the current, breathless news coverage of casualties seem a bit overblown."

Thanks for putting this in perspective. When you consider what we've accomplished, 3,563 dead and 26,129 injured is a small price to pay. And its not like any of them are my kids.

I also thought the breathless coverage of the 9/11 casualties seeded a bit overblown. I mean, look how many americans died in the Civil war.

if you think that Roger is downplaying the sad impact of even one casualty of the Iraq war, you are mistaken. Roger's comments are acridly pointed at the media hysteria regarding all that is bad, and none of what is good, regarding the Iraq war. ( and the good is certainly debateable depending upon one's slaant...) If this were NOT the case with the coverage, then Michael Yon would have been picked up by a network by now for his work.

And for even more perspective, the USA lost 60,000 soldiers in the month long battle for Iwo Jima.
When a cop or fireman is killed in New York, there is a tremendous amount of "breathless" news coverage over the event in the tabloids and on the local TV channels. This coverage lasts from the accident to the funeral.


Now some jerk might say, what’s the big deal, scores of cops and fireman died on 9/11, why make a big deal over the death of one firefighter? Or some jerk might say, this coverage is an example of media bias which has some motive to show how bad life is.
Fortunately, I don't know of such jerks. The vast majority of New Yorkers welcome such coverage, breathless or otherwise, to remind us of the risks our cops and firefighters take.

This is not the first time that Roger has tried to minimize the costs of the Iraq affair. This is what happens when you fight a war and don't ask the majority of the public to pay a price for that war. Its no big deal, its somebody else's kid.

The argument that the corporations who control the media are for some reason biased against our success in Iraq because NBC or CNN hasn't hired Michael Yon is a frivolous argument and not very convincing.
Again, Peter, neither I nor Roger, downplay the enormity of the loss of even one life in this war, or any other......but please point out to me ANY coverage of the positives in Iraq, in the MSM.....I mean they don't even have to do the work because real embedded bloggers, that DO leave the green zone such as Yon ( as opposed to others that just stay in the green zone waiting for casualty reports )....can be tapped, to comment on their dispatches....I know how much these soldiers sacrifice, on a volunteer basis. Thankfully, the majority of America, in this day and age, are not needed to fight wars. And pointing out that the likes of Yon, are not tapped more ( Fox news does link to him every now and then....imagine that....) for their in field accounts....of both good AND bad....tells me that the MSM is not only focusing on the casualties of war, and they should, but going out of their way to NOT report on any positives.
Well two of the three papers in New York are pro Iraq war and are constantly editorializing that we can see the light at the end of the tunnel. (3 of 4 if you include the New York Sun). Nor would anyone seriously deny that Fox News is not strongly pro administration and pro Iraq. Yet it appears that, as with the NY Post and the News, Fox's Iraq coverage has been significantly declining. Maybe their philosophy is that no news is good news. What reason would you give for Fox faing to report news favorable to the administration?

This is just like Viet Nam. We're at the point where no reasonable openminded person could deny that the invasion of Iraq was a bad idea, was not in our best interests, and has been incompetently conducted. Unfortunatly there are those who refuse to admit that they were wrong and thus are blaming everything on the media or creating annother stab in the back theory.

As if GE, Disney, the real estate interests that control the New York Times, ect, ect, are out their pushing some socilist agenda. If you believe that, I've got a nice bridge I'd like to sell you.
Hey, here a "positive" story i guees. Thats worth 3,500 dead.

Both the defense of South Korea and the defense of South Vietnam from Communist aggression from the north were great ideas, absolutely in our best interest (saving people from lefty homocidal rule is what we do) but they were not that well prosecuted, as I pointed out re Korea recently. Every death or serious injury in Western Asia is a personal tragedy for the dead, injured, their friends and family, but the rate of casualties we've suffered is historically low--800 a year dead, 6,200 injured (most of them slight). That's next to nothing in the bigger historical picture. And we've accomplished a lot. Quit running down our troops who are next to magnificant. To quote Buck Turgidson, "I'm not saying we won't get our hair mussed", but it is just over that. The 9/11 civilian dead got too much coverage at the time, but not enough lately. Talk about the forgotten 3,000.
zqdijq"Quit running down our troops who are next to magnificant."

Boy, you're pulling out all of the weapons in the neocon arsenal. next you'll be saying that anyone who criticizes the conduct of the war is a traitor. Or, that those who don’t support the war effort are helping the enemy. Or if we don’t stop them over there, we’ll have to fight them over here.
Truth hurts a bit, doesn't it? I would not say those things. I criticize the war effort.
Well, I might say that those who don’t support the war effort are helping the enemy, but only about you.
And what do you do to support the war effort Rog? Sit there in you underwear typing missives bitching about CNN and Al Gore? About as much as you did back in the early 70s, right. Oh thats right, I forgot about those monthly phone cards.
You can tell when you're losing the argument, peter b, if that really is your name, because you go back ad hominem with the chickenhawk accusation. It's still tedious.
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