Saturday, March 25, 2006

Darkhorse Marines Do What They Can (Updated)

From the not-exciting-enough-for-the-nightly-news file comes word that Marines from Company I, 3rd Battalion, 5th Marine Regiment delivered a new top-of-the-line pediatric wheelchair to a little girl in Al Hasa, Iraq.
The Marines became aware of the girl in January, when they saw her while on patrol.

The story is reported by Cpl. Mark Sixbey in the CENTCOM News:
“We knew we had to help out in some way,” said Staff Sgt. Charles Evers, a platoon commander for Company I. “We don’t have a miracle cure, but we can at least give her a new wheelchair.”
Guaranteeing this story's exclusion from the mainstream media is the fact that the little girl was injured in an auto accident, not by military action. Previous generations of journalists were eager to report stories like this. Now, there's just the occasional old schooler around.

Update: Commenter Gunny, currently serving in Iraq, made such a strong post in response to a churlish comment from another poster in the comments thread at The Jawa Report that it deserves to be part of the main post:


"Why are they doing this when they should be going out, killing fascists/terrorists, and making sure there is law and order the streets?"

I can guarantee you that those Marines are going out multiple times a day and doing everything in their power "to locate, close with, and destroy the enemy through fire and maneuver and to repel the enemy's assault through fire and close combat" as that is the primary mission of the Marine rifle squad. I have been in the city of Ramadi for 11 months, I have conducted over 400 combat patrols, cordon and knock, targeted raids, and mechanized patrols and I have also found the time to feed the poor, deliver medical supplies and to help those who cannot help themselves. To do any less would be un-American and downright wrong! Don't penalize the Marine because he still has the heart to help a little girl who was injured. The Iraqi people are so poor they often eat their food off the floor and for the most part have no electricity or running water, and to say that no one cares is part of the reason that most people don't understand the nature of war. The individual Marine on the battlefield struggles everyday to retain his/her humanity in the face of horror and destruction. When was the last time you had to carry your buddies body parts back to a vehicle so that you could ensure he came home. We have 17 and 18-year-old men out here doing that everyday, and if they can find the heart in them to help a little girl than so be it, whats it to you? It is what separates us from the enemy. We have a moral compass to guide us and we have compassion for the small guy caught in the crossfire. Shame on you, Sir.

“A waste of time. No one in the Muslim world cares and no one here except Bush apologists who want to say that "We were only wanting to help the Iraqis!" cares, either.”

I am NOT a Bush apologists and I Care. I definitely do not lay awake at night wondering about the outcome of the Iraqi people. I do, however, still find a place in my heart to realize the plight of the individual right in front of me. When we do things like that, we are not trying to make a media statement, and we are not trying to humanize the war effort. No, Sir, usually, we are just trying to make a right a wrong, and to allow us to feel a little more human before we return to the killing of fascist/terrorist. If you can’t find it in yourself to care about an injured child then maybe someone should write a blog about that, because that is something that needs to be discussed.

This nation has become so polarized that there is no room for middle ground, compromises, or meeting people half way. It’s this kind of attitude, one in which people judge an action and then try to force it into a political left or right box, which has caused this war to become a disaster. The Marines are doing the best they can, they fight and die everyday and if that isn’t enough for you than I suggest you grab a rifle and come on over, other than that try poking your finger at the politicians who develop the “Executive Conflict Intent”. In lieu of those two decisions maybe opening your heart to the plight of the innocent and just sleeping comfortable knowing that the Marines are fighting terrorist over HERE and not in your back yard, can be justification enough for you. I never did think that an American would want justification for a hospitable act from a Marine in a war zone, would you rather have a war crime instead? What exactly do you want?

Posted by The Gunny at March 25, 2006 01:49 PM

Also posted at The Jawa Report and Vince Aut Morire.