Posted by moi at insteadofwar.org:
Both sides of this issue have plenty of people who are an embarrassment to their peers.
…but in Steven's defense, being anti-war does not require being a pacifist any more than it requires anti-military sentiment.
I agree with Slo on this last point. Voluntary service does not mean that every man and woman engaged in the waging of this war agrees with it. I am sure there are many of them who are just doing their job, recognizing that deciding whether or not to obey orders on a case-by-case basis would set as dangerous a precedent as the preemptive doctrine itself.
I, for one, am glad that the military is comprised of people who have willingly "given themselves to the machine", so to speak. While this is not a choice I would be prepared to make, their dedication does, indeed, protect my freedom. Were it not for the armed forces and the defense industry, we would have simply bowed to Soviet influence and participated in that disastrous experiment in economics.
This is why I was not at the Boeing protest. As an American, I like smart bombs. I'd love to live in a world where it were not true, but on this planet, things that go boom are, I'm afraid, an integral part of maintaining social order. Coercive force will be wielded by man; it might as well be wielded with as much precision as possible and in defense of (relatively) liberty-loving society.
That doesn't mean I have to agree with every instance of the wielding of that force any more than is means I have to hold the military in disdain because our cowardly leaders have misused it.
There, that little rant should ensure I'm left with no friends here. :-)