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Old 04-14-2009   #1
yamiyugikun
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Default Appreciation for the military from the civilians

Hi everyone,

I just joined the Small wars journal community so I could share this email. Bill thanked me for my comment and asked me to post it, so here it is:

Dear Small Wars Journal editor,

I found your site at an article archived at the Washington Post about officers in the military with Ph.D's. Here is the link. http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn...0401196_2.html After I wrote a term paper for my archives class on veterans and military records, I became very interested in the military efforts on counter-insurgency. I read an article Gen. Petraeus wrote called "Beyond the Cloister," which is found in his list of published works at the end of a wikipedia article detailing him, archived at http://www.the-american-interest.com...m?Id=290&MId=1

When I read what he wrote in that article, I gained a new level of respect of the military and realized my own biases as a civilian currently earning a master's in Library and Information Science. Here is what Gen. Petraeus wrote that broadened my perspective:

"The truth is that, just as the military has developed certain stereotypes of academics, journalists and other civilians over the years, these groups in turn hold certain stereotypes about those in the military. Itís important that we in the military understand those we serveóthe American peopleóand it is equally important that our citizens understand those in uniform who have raised their right hand and sworn to support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies foreign and domestic."

I realized I was one of those academics that held stereotypes, when I thought I was truly becoming an educated person. Many anti-war protesters of the Vietnam War became professors who teach in civilian universities across the country. Until I read Gen. Petraeus's words of wisdom, I realized that I inherited the bias of my liberal professors without thinking. I understand that my professors are still against war in general. But it is because you brave men and women in the armed forces protect us, that we have the luxury in our civilian universities to criticize that which we do not understand.

I read an excellent editorial at armytimes.com detailing how it is thanks to this nation's men and women in armed uniform, that global trade is protected and can flourish. Never once in any of my classes did my professors explain the vital role of the US military in protecting global trade. Academics can "blame" the military, but the bottom line is that, there will always be someone out there who does not follow rules, therefore a military to protect the free world is necessary.

An article in my school, UCLA, complained that UCLA should not sponsor the management of the Los Alamos labs, where military defense and weapons are developed. But the student who wrote that article in the Daily Bruin, UCLA's paper, clearly lacked the awareness that the military protects global trade. I am aware that in the section of your site, you call for submissions from students of military science at military schools. I attend a civilian school. But I wanted to apologize as a civilian and an academic for the bias I held until I read Gen. Petraeus's work.

It is my sincerest wish that my email goes one step further, by bridging the gap between academics and the military, coming from the academic camp. It is also my deepest desire as a citizen of this country that the Afghan people may find peace and rebuild their lives with Gen. Petraeus's effects in that country. God Bless you folks in uniform, I hope we, the civilian population, began to open our eyes at the efforts you brave warriors make.
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Old 04-14-2009   #2
Ken White
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Default Thanks, Yamiyugikun

Can I call you Yami?

Appreciate the thoughts you express. There is a gap and it does neither community a service...
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Old 04-15-2009   #3
yamiyugikun
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Yami is cool^_^ One of the things it seems is that both the military and academia are self insulated communitities. I was just curious, what are stereotypes of academics that military folks might have? I welcome any opinions, as I'm curious.
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Old 04-15-2009   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by yamiyugikun View Post
Yami is cool^_^ One of the things it seems is that both the military and academia are self insulated communitities. I was just curious, what are stereotypes of academics that military folks might have? I welcome any opinions, as I'm curious.
Academics are self obsessed, egotistical know it alls, with a penchant to be obtuse through the assault on verbiage, and poisoned by the liberal biases of failed socio-communist-fascism of the 1960s. Relegated to the dust-bins of history along with the wobblies and other populist considerations academics have a large failing in the inadequacy of self analysis as a community.



he he he he .........

can i talk about the military next?
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Old 04-15-2009   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by selil View Post
Academics are self obsessed, egotistical know it alls, with a penchant to be obtuse through the assault on verbiage, and poisoned by the liberal biases of failed socio-communist-fascism of the 1960s. Relegated to the dust-bins of history along with the wobblies and other populist considerations academics have a large failing in the inadequacy of self analysis as a community.



he he he he .........

can i talk about the military next?
Can't wait to see that one.
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Old 04-22-2009   #6
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Academics tend to believe guns kill people and not the people pulling the trigger. Social problems and ignorance, which cause people to pull the trigger, are of such signifcance that elminating firearms is the only practical solution to the problem. The military tends to believe that Academics are mostly incapable of defending themselves against physical aggression, in short, they are indecisive metrosexuals.
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Old 04-22-2009   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by goesh View Post
Academics tend to believe guns kill people and not the people pulling the trigger. Social problems and ignorance, which cause people to pull the trigger, are of such signifcance that elminating firearms is the only practical solution to the problem. The military tends to believe that Academics are mostly incapable of defending themselves against physical aggression, in short, they are indecisive metrosexuals.

That is some very profound stuff goesh


Hope I never meet a metrosexual....not really sure what that/they is.....but it sounds really scary
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Old 04-22-2009   #8
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Oh and the military;

Members of the military are xenophobic, unitary, trite, secularized thinkers placing people into containers of target and collateral damage. Through rigorous mind numbing brain-washing youth are formed into intellectual automatons incapable of independent thought or action which carries over into later adult life as a pathos against intellectualism and civil discourse. Armed service personnel wrapped in a cloak of fascism export an ideology of hatred of civilians that is carried like a disease for life.

Shrouded in an abysmal darkness of internalized secrecy they educate in cloistered institutions only allowing other military to attend, cloak their activities as national secrets, hide behind high fences of bases, claim special privileges not available to any other group, engage or support experimentation on civilians, their leaders gerrymander the political process, all the while the ranks engage in tirades against civilians while undermining democracy.


That was a fun if useless exercise. Like any information operation take a grain of truth and spin it into oblivion.

The real difference between academics and the military is tweed and camouflage.
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Old 04-22-2009   #9
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Default - more of the spin cycle

Academics believe the military ( and cops) lack imagination, creativity and artistic expression and go to great lengths to suppress their feminine side by excessive beer drinking, passing gas and looking at naked young women in magazines.
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Old 04-22-2009   #10
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Default So???

If I eventually get a PhD, am I in threat of becoming a decisive metrosexual?

I had to abrubtly end several relationships in Cali when I refused to get a manicure or pedicure.

Okay, back to my hole.

v/r

Mike
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Old 04-22-2009   #11
goesh
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Mike, as long as you don't wax the hair on your back, you won't turn into one of them M guys. you can always strap a .32 mag to your ankle for added self-assurance.
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Old 04-23-2009   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by goesh View Post
Academics believe the military ... go to great lengths to suppress their feminine side by excessive beer drinking, passing gas and looking at naked young women in magazines.
You say that like it is a bad thing.

I would argue that academics suffer from the artifical nature of their environment where the most basic aspects of human nature are blindly and thoughtlessly repressed in order to kowtow to the insecurities of the physically and emotionally frail. Scholarly success and conformity to the so-called liberal democratic values are placed above personal responsibility for the body politic.

Members of the military are cognizant of what they are keeping under control, and aware of their nature as animals equally capable of violence, compassion, or passion. However, the casual acceptance of threats to life establish a value system that places physical prowess and decisiveness over reflection and intellectual achievement. Note that this last suffers greatlyin times of peace.

The great irony is that service men and women live a lifestyle much more consistant with the principles of social justice than the academics that talk about social justice.
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Old 04-23-2009   #13
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I would also say, based on experience in both worlds, that the military is just as compartmentalized as academia...and both sides have difficulty seeing that reality. And I would further hazard that both groups (especially after they've been in their particular boxes for about 8 years) have an equally difficult time connecting with or understanding the common folk ("Joe Six Pack" or whatever you want to call the remains of the middle class).
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Old 04-23-2009   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Blair View Post
I would also say, based on experience in both worlds, that the military is just as compartmentalized as academia..
That is why I thought it was funny.

Though it is very much a one way street. VERY FEW academics achieve professional academic success and then enter the military. Comparatively speaking a lot of successful military professionals enter academia.
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Old 04-23-2009   #15
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Default Steve and Selil are both right

Sometimes we forget that academics have to eat. They work in bureaucracies just like we do. They get paid to publish. When they publish, they can buy bread.

It is not healthy to minimize that even though what they may publish may be dumb and lacking common sense with big words like NEO....As if there is anything new under the sun.

v/r

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Old 04-24-2009   #16
yamiyugikun
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Default Thank you for your opinions

Hi everyone,

Thank you for your opinions. One of the things that has fusterated me about academia is living in a cloistered world. It's as if a "religion" is made about intellectualism and theories can solve the world's problems. As one of you said, academics talk a lot about social justice. I didn't know why I admired the editorials and honesty on armytimes.com and other military sites, but I think I understand that the armed forces practice REAL social justice in action.

What exactly do the Civilian Corps do to help service people? I've thought about a civilian job possibly in the armed forces, since a lot of service personnel are being deployed to Afganistan. Or what is it that service personnel would like to see civilians/academics do to support them?

Naomi
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Old 04-24-2009   #17
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I'm married to an academic.
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Old 04-24-2009   #18
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Default Academics.

Not only am I married to an academic I found out about SWJ from an article in the New Yorker Magazine.
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Old 04-24-2009   #19
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Default Academics help the (US) miltary?

Naomi,

You asked how can academics help the (US) military?

Try the thread(s) on Human Terrian Teams and the recent SWJ Blog series on co-authored papers - both provide an indication. Also the paper(s) which non-miltary SWC members helped military members with.

Other places comment on the need for intelligence training and how outsiders can help.

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Old 04-24-2009   #20
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Hi Naomi,

Quote:
Originally Posted by yamiyugikun View Post
One of the things that has fusterated me about academia is living in a cloistered world. It's as if a "religion" is made about intellectualism and theories can solve the world's problems. As one of you said, academics talk a lot about social justice. I didn't know why I admired the editorials and honesty on armytimes.com and other military sites, but I think I understand that the armed forces practice REAL social justice in action.
I always get worried when I hear academics (including me) talking about "social justice". All too often, that has become a signifier for "institute MY version of reality" - a version I often disagree with. Maybe I've just spent too much time hanging out with Parlour Pink Marxists (who dominate my university), but I find that academics are the LAST people I want to see running a society.

"Cloistered"? The perfect term for it! Then again, it's not really surprising since most of Western academia comes out of schools run by the Church .

Quote:
Originally Posted by yamiyugikun View Post
What exactly do the Civilian Corps do to help service people? I've thought about a civilian job possibly in the armed forces, since a lot of service personnel are being deployed to Afganistan. Or what is it that service personnel would like to see civilians/academics do to support them?
David point to some excellent examples but there is one other thing that we do, whether you like it or not . We can and, IMO SHOULD, act as a "conscience" for social actions.

Cheers,

Marc
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