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The Glorification Of War

“I was born in 49,  A cold war kid in the McCarthy times, Stop ’em at the 38th parallel, Blast those yellow reds to hell” Billy Joel

War is something that defines the generations. Sadly in the United States, we have had scant years of peace. It is high time to end the glorification of war. 

war graves photoAs a Christian, it is my understanding that man was created to love one another. War then would be the antithesis of our sacred duty to serve one another with kindness and joy. From a mental health perspective war is foul medicine. I have been with many veterans in psychiatric hospitals. It seems the dehumanization used during basic training is enough to drive some people insane. This rigorous brainwashing is necessary to create people who are willing to kill.

Even worse than the trauma of the basic training is the unnatural and evil which occurs on the battlefield. Under no circumstances is the wholesale slaughter of men, women, and children along with rampant destruction noble. Those who commit these heinous crimes against humanity return with deep psychological problems. This is clearly illustrated in the fact that over twenty veterans a day commit suicide. This is a national crisis and it is getting far too little attention.

The population of our ever-growing homeless citizens is disproportionately made up of veterans. When these poor wretches go and ‘serve’ their country they are called our ‘finest’. Unfortunately, when they return they do not get the sufficient help they need to adjust back into society. Those business people who directly profited of the suffering and carnage are falling far below the necessary level of caring for our ‘heroes’.

If the world is to survive if the nations are to heal we need to eliminate war. With the proliferation of nuclear and biological warfare, the stakes are the end of all human life. The first step is ending the glorification of war. War is nothing by organized murder. We should no more applaud a victorious country on the battlefield then we would praise the schoolyard bully in beating up the weaker younger children. Personally, though I have never served, I am a victim of war. My dad was drafted in the Korean War. He was supporting his widowed mother, providing for his own family and going to college when he was called into the army. The reason that he was taken though he shouldn’t have gone was that he was a chemist and the army needed his specialty. I see pictures before he served and after. Gone was his smiling face.

There is a changing of the guard in the United States. Presidents Carter, Reagan, and Bush were all members of the military.  Bush himself saw combat. On the other hand, the younger Bush, Clinton, Obama, and Trump never served. George Bush was a pilot in the national guard in order to avoid going to Vietnam. The significance is that these ‘chicken hawks’ who hold positions of power know war only in the abstract. I recall talking to a veteran of Desert Storm telling me about the disturbing sight of a dead Iraqi soldier. It was something that he will never forget. I wish Donald Trump would take a tour of the destroyed cities of Syria to witness first hand the wickedness of war.

Going to war is not serving your country. Going to war is not protecting our freedom. Rather it is one of the biggest cons that the world has going. The brutal honesty is that the banks, the weapons makers, the oil companies, the drug dealers, and Wall Street all cash in big time from war. It is the profit motive that drives the unholy insanity. Saying this I want to release a great measure of responsibility for the young men and women who serve in the armed forces. The world at eighteen or twenty is a confusing place and it is easy to make a bad decision especially when recruiters lie. I know many people who have had positive experiences in serving. I have seen ruined lives as well.

“They will beat their swords into plowshares and their spears into pruning hooks and they will not study war no more.” That is, of course, a quote from the Bible. If the Bible is one thing it is honest. If we are to ever achieve a fraction of what we can be we too must be brutally honest. Killing people on the other side of the world to steal their resources and make the profiteers rich does nothing to secure our rights. In fact, the opposite is true. By denying others their self-determination we are setting a hypocritical example.

I urge everybody to live in this world with compassion for their fellow human being. Our veterans have stories to tell and we need to listen to them. In that way, they are relieved of the stress that is bottled up inside them. But allow the veterans to speak on their own time in their own terms. Above all don’t pass judgment.

We all need to work to end the horror of war. Here is a piece from my book of song lyrics called “Without The Music”. https://amzn.to/2RD85u7

War on War (nk1)

The dusty trumpets they sound
The people they gather around
We’re gonna have us a battle
A fight to make the nation rattle
A conflict we’ve never seen before
Yes we’re gonna war on war

Hear the people rage
We want peace in our age
Let the white doves soar
We’re gonna war on war

From New York to L.A.
Listen to what I say
Child put down your gun
Have fun in the midday sun
Look in the mirror you’re a youth
And violence is not the truth

Hear the people rage
We want peace in our age
Let the white doves soar
We’re gonna war on war

As we sing songs of peace
Our numbers shall increase
Don’t call us fools or pass us by
See our banners lifted high
Love is the ultimate cure
Yes we’re gonna war on war

Hear the people rage
We want peace in our age
Let the white doves soar
We’re gonna war on war

 

The Glorification Of War

John Kaniecki

John Kaniecki is a full-time caregiver for his wife Sylvia. He is a published writer and works with the Church of Christ. John has lived with bipolar for over thirty years and has been hospitalized nine times, three of which were committed. John has chronicled his life story in his memoirs "More Than The Madness". Also of note is John's book of poetry "Murmurings Of A Mad Man" which are poems written about being committed in Graystone Psychiatric Hospital. John believes in the power of words to change the world for the better. His website can be seen here. His books can be seen on Amazon. You can visit his personal blog "Turn A Page Or Two" here.


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APA Reference
Kaniecki, J. (2018). The Glorification Of War. Psych Central. Retrieved on December 16, 2018, from https://blogs.psychcentral.com/fragments/2018/12/the-glorification-of-war/

 

Last updated: 6 Dec 2018
Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 6 Dec 2018
Published on PsychCentral.com. All rights reserved.