Tuesday, July 11, 2006
Here's a snap of the Boys at The Ditch. Having recently started a real job as an employee I have about 1 day of accrued vacation. MLWN having worked at the same place for quite some time has a couple months of accrued vacation. She needed a vacation, so she and the boys and her parents rendezvoused in Las Vegas, rented a minivan and did a 1400 mile loop around the Colorado Plateau while I stayed back on the Peninsula and worked while living vicariously through intermittent cell phone conversations. Their first stop after leaving Vegas was The Grand Canyon. Have you been there? It's great. You should go. They made it as far as Arches National Monument. Have you been there? You should go. It's great. In between they saw some dinosaur footprints (outside Cameron) and Capitol Reef and Bryce and Zion and Monument Valley and Hoover Dam (not in that order).
Hi Guys. It's been a while. Having an actual paying job has been kind of distracting. But my browsing of the USMC Image Archive has driven me to come out of seclusion.
The above picture is another example of why we have exactly zero chance of achieving a positive outcome in Iraq. Look at the picture. Look at it. It's a memorial to two unfortunate Seabees who died in Iraq. Their friends wanted to do something in their honor; that is admirable. But think for a second about the form of their memorial. They've made a cross (small reminder, a Christian symbol) and they've placed it under some re-bar that's going to be part of a newly constructed bit of roadway (small reminder, this roadway is in Iraq, not a Christian country. In fact, a Muslim country). Large numbers of Iraqis think we're a Crusading Army come back to the Middle East to convert them all to Christianity (or something like that). Driving around the countryside scattering symbols of the oppressor's religion around just can't be a good way to win friends and influence people.
And since it has been such a very long time since I've posted, I will ask Hank's Question: How many Iraqis do we have to kill before the survivors will be our friends?
Update: Just to clarify, I think it's great that the friends of these two Seabees memorialized them. My problem is with a command structure that allows for things that will, without a doubt, further antagonize the Iraqis. Make a cross as a remembrance of fallen friends: great. Bury that cross in a Muslim country where the population already thinks you're the return of the Crusades: not a great idea, but an understandable urge as TFA says the crater was made by the IED that killed the two men. Whoever in a position of authority let them do it and whoever vetted this picture and let it get posted on the official USMC website: dangerously incompetent.