Many of us have not endured the horrors that drive 22 veterans a day, and countless poor in world regions that U.S. empire has touched, to the final act of despair. I would like to think we can lift hopes and perhaps bring comfort to those around us by radically sharing resources and learning to join courageous others in the work at hand.
Should Americans join the military if the next commander-in-chief of the armed services is an arrogant, ignorant, irresponsible, war-happy hawk? Many of America's best and brightest join the armed services. But with the U.S. constantly at war, joining is a life or death decision, dependent on the judgment of whoever sits in the Oval Office.
The problem with the United Nations is that it's a unity of entities defined by their hatred of one another and committed to the perpetuation of "the scourge of war." We won't begin creating global peace until we learn how to bypass nationalism and the single, unacknowledged agreement binding nation-states to each other: the inevitability of war.
I was struck by this small moment because it encapsulates the lie of militarism where it is most invulnerable: at the humanity of the men and women who protect us, putting their lives on the line. When all else goes wrong, the troops remain sacred. In a broken economy, the troops are sacred. Militarism is the god we can manipulate.