Thursday, March 02, 2006

Sheehan's Fifth Column Grows

Fifth Column:

A fifth column is a group of people who clandestinely undermines from within a larger group to which it is expected to be loyal, such as a nation. The term originated with a 1936 radio address by Emilio Mola, a Nationalist general during the 1936-39 Spanish Civil War. As four of his army columns moved on Madrid, the general referred to his militant supporters within the capital as his "fifth column," intent on undermining the Republican government from within.

Cindy Sheehan, in her latest round of lunacy, (observe where this article is published for a good chuckle) will be addressing the EU about why all war is bad and never justified. Of course, her calling the President of Iran out for making "non-peaceful" statements is probably just about the understatement of this year so far. That, I don't have so much of a problem with. Whoever wants to entertain her in her paranoid delusions of Bush being a Zionist agent is their own business, however much it reduces their own credibility as a result. But then there's this nugget:

Let's set up Camp Caseys in front of recruiter's offices to stop our children from even enlisting to wear a uniform for the war profiteers. Let's set up Camp Caseys in front of the Pentagon…Congress…Congressional offices…embassies…the White House…propaganda media centers…war profiteers…President's vacation homes…Karl Rove's DC home…the list for valid protest locations is endless...but not in front of our troops.

Our struggle is with the industrial military complex and the people who put our soldiers in harm's way in the first place for no valid reason and who are keeping them in harm's way despite all evidence that this war is a nightmare and a mistake.

Protesting politicians, well it's counter-productive in most cases, but whatever. But camping out in front of recruiters? I want to first parse out exactly why this statement makes absolutely no sense. First of all, recruiters are soldiers too. No matter how much Cindy and her cronies want to separate them out, they are as a matter of fact, active duty military, and often people who have served in combat. So to say "not in front of our troops" but then in front of recruiters is a complete contradiction.

Second, by starving the military of recruits, what does that accomplish but longer tours of duty? Putting soldiers in more and longer harm than they are now? How does trying to stop recruitment do anything but harm the military and the people who serve in it? Sheehan wants to attack the military industrial complex, but no matter how much she wants to dissemble, her and her cronies need to understand that soldiers are in fact PART of that complex. You can't really separate them.

This goes back to the whole thing of these leftist saying they "support" the troops. Sheehan herself doesn't want the troops harmed, BUT YET SHE DOES! She's clearly okay with the men who killed her son. They're freedom fighters! Nothing about what Cindy Sheehan or her followers does supports the troops, it undermines them. I don't like making this argument. I don't like labeling people who are exercising their right to free speech as a fifth column. In about 95% of cases, I think protesters mean well and their effects are pretty much innocuous. Glorifying the people who kill them and trying to starve the military itself of recruits and resources is pretty much the opposite of support. Cindy Sheehan supports the soldiers, all right, so long as they don't exist or aren't soldiers. Her complete lack of ability to make a logically coherent point, or see the fallacy in her own ideology don't bother me. The fact that people actually listen to her does. Not Sheehan, though. (H/t: Balloon Juice!)