Too nice to be effective?

I met a retired Air Force vet today, and he was just the nicest guy.  Kind, thoughtful, enthusiastic.  In that, he resembled all of the other career military people I’ve met over the years, whether currently serving or retired.  I’ll admit  that my sample is small, since I don’t move in military circles, but it’s still a 100% hit rate for the 20 – 30 I have met:   nice people.

In many countries — mostly military dictatorships — the military is to be feared, not  just by the enemy, but by the citizens at home.  They are lethal weapons at home and abroad.

The question that floated into my mind was whether the fact that our military demands decency, and that really nice people  seem  to serve, impairs our fighting strength.  Let me phrase this another way:  Are our guys and gals too nice to be truly effective?

This is not a new thought for me.  I  remember during the First Gulf War watching the news with my parents, and hearing U.S. soldiers saying that they didn’t hate the Iraqis.  My Dad, who had seen fighting all  over the  Mediterranean during WWII was stunned:  you  have to hate to fight, he said.

Your thoughts?

What is the effect of disbelief on war?

Thank you as always for your insightful and thoughtful comments.  I always love throwing out topics and seeing the wonderful places you take them. 

Today, I’d like to ask another question that relates to faith.  One thing that cannot be denied about the Islamists is that they have a deep faith.  It is hardly surprising that young men who truly believe they have 70 virgins waiting for them in heaven can’t wait to blow themselves up and take as many innocents with them as possible.  I suspect, though, that a person who does not believe in the afterlife, who believe that life is a one-shot deal, will be a lot less ready to sacrifice that life for any cause.

This difference might also account for some of the strangeness of the liberal viewpoint.  By and large, liberals do not have an abiding faith in God and an afterlife and they simply do not understand (and are a bit suspicious of) those who have a deep faith, be they Chriatian, Jewish or Islamic.   They can’t imagine sacrificing their lives for anything, and they act as if they can’t imagine anyone else doing so either.  How can they possibly have anything intelligent to say about the war against Islamists if they have no understanding of their foes?

So what effects do Bookwormroom readers think the loss of faith of so many in the West will have on the battle against the Islamists?  Also, those of you who don’t believe in an afterlife, who believe this life is a one-shot deal — what do you believe is worth dying for?  What would you give your life for, if you thought you were giving up everything for all eternity?

More random thoughts

I’m still on vacation, and still working with a microscopic keyboard that has a space bar that is dysfunctional in  two directions.  Either no spaces at all, or too many.  Forgive the messy typing.  It’s too  difficult to fix.

Question for  you?  What is it with the radical  left and nudity?  Zombie caught a Breasts not  Bombs protest at Hillary’s San Francisco campaign  headquarters, and I really had to ask myself what the breasts had to do with things.  Also, if we’re going to have exhibitionists, why can’t attractive people be the ones doing it?

We pulled over to a park today to have a picnic.  There was a large covered area, filled with picnic  tables and there were lots of picnickers — only none of them  were using the tables, they were all crouched the  wind  on the spikey grass.  Why?  Because  two  extremely drunk homeless men had set themselves up in  the middle of the picnic area.  They were loud, smelly and, to anyone with sense, potentially dangerous.  They double-handedly managed to turn  a whole area off-limits.  I thought of them when I read about Gavin Newsom’s travails with the homeless and the druggies  in Golden  Gate Park.  What no good liberals want to admit is that a few smelly winos or  druggies can  ruin a park, library or neighborhood  for hundreds or even thousands  of people.  Their impact is far disproportionate to their numbers.

D.M. Giangreco warns us that we can expect the Islamists to create a Tet offensive just in  time for  General  Petraeus’ report.  While the  military will understand  what is  happening, the media won’t, and will surrender just as they did  with  the original Tet offensive.

With regard to the two border guards convicted for committing  a crime using a weapon, even though the  weapon is part of his job, Earl has done a good job of defending  his belief  that the prosecutor was overly zealous and that his tactics  are dangerous  in  terms of prosecutorial  decency and honesty.  Earl directed me to a post  that  examines  reforms that would  end prosecution power  plays and potentially clean-up  our criminal justice  system.

And on that note, I’m  signing  off for another  24 hours or so.  Having read DQ’s  great question about the Judeo-Christian God and Jihad, I know you’re in good hands.