If this is too political, please moderate or delete. Not trying to spark any real political controversy; just seeing what other people think about it. More of a moral than political question. Would appreciate a PM if it gets deleted, just so I know where to draw the line in the future
I'm not gonna post a link, but there's kind of a viral video going around of a Marine in Iraq supposedly throwing a puppy off a cliff. I'm not particularly set off by this one incident, because I know from others who have been-and-back, that this sort of thing isn't completely unheard of over on that side of the globe.
But as far as the "Give them a break; they're bored and stressed out over there" arguments go, I don't see much merit. Personally I rank all life as similarly valuable, and I'm one to feel remorse after stepping on a spider, thinking "I just killed something that took millions of years to evolve to where it was on my kitchen floor, before I ended it in the blink of an eye." I think there's a fine line between abusing or taking delight in the pain of living creatures, and doing the same towards human beings.
Is this the fault of CO's and NCO's? Is this battle stress? Or is it just folk who don't know any better? There are a lot of fanatics out there right now chastising the military and Americans for caring more about a puppy than human beings. I don't think it's quite so black and white. As far as animals go, I do tend to feel worse, because there is an innocence in animals that you don't find in humans. Humans are responsible for human-inflicted death. So naturally I feel terrible for human suffering, but at the same time it's all human-inflicted in the first place. Maybe this is some version of "original sin."
Anyways... I respect anyone who serves - I really, really do.
But frankly it scares me that this is among probably hundreds of similar incidents taking place over there in the desert. And I'm frightened that these sorts of people (honorable for serving, yes, no doubt) are going to come back with the same morals and the same stresses, to serve in my local fire department, my police force, my state legislature, etc. I would not trust someone with my family, my food, or my protection, who knowingly and intentionally took delight in such suffering -- I have a real, strong standing that someone who so brazenly dumbs down the value of life has no place in a war zone, and maybe no place in a truly civilized society without constant supervision.
So who's at fault here? Is the individual held accountable? Obviously not every poor lost puppy, goat or scorpion can be adopted and cared for, but tossing it off a cliff? War is hell... maybe civilians like myself just can't quite grasp what that hell can do to someone?
I just find it sad that such ruthlessness (by the Marines or not) is carried out on the grounds of boredom and fun, be it to a puppy or to a civilian child. I'd hoped that our boys were above that -- and I know that most of them are.