The Harvesting of Innocence
For the Meat Grinder
It Don't Mean Nothin'
Someone once said that all wars would cease if soldiers simply refused to fight. The politicians and leaders of societies/civilizations never get their fingernails dirty. They pass imperatives down to military commanders who then recruit, muster and send young men and women off to kill "the enemy" -- who are just other young men and women.
Thereafter, the young men and women are indoctrinated into perceiving themselves as fighting (and dying) for a more noble cause than their opponents. If these young men and women were in full pre-possession of the full scope of war -- the way wars are manifested and their aftermath, perhaps it would be possible for them to simply say "no."
In fairness to their education about war, these men and women should be exposed to the full spectrum of the political intricacies that bring war to the horizon, as well as all of its myriad implications. Before recruits sign-up for enlistment in the armed services, fairness would dictate that they be subjected to viewing books and films like "Johnny Got His Gun."
A line on their induction papers ought to question, "Are you willing to risk the possibility of being turned into a thinking vegetable as part of your service?" This same procedure SHOULD be part of the recruitment process for "so called" religious zealots. Exposure to a motion picture like "Johnny" ought to place a question mark in the minds of any recruit anywhere in the world. It's viewing should be mandatory for all would-be soldiers. This should be part of their standard education before they learn how to fire a rifle.
My guess is that with a fully-rounded comprehension of war's less savory aspects, not many individuals would feel inclined to fill the ranks. Then, without armies to serve their whims, what would world "leaders" do to fulfill their ambitions and dubious compulsions?
Knowledge is power. Withholding knowledge from the uninitiated is perverse, criminal and evil. Every son, husband, uncle, prior to signing on the dotted line, should be exposed to the ugly underbell of war via books and film and allowed to think about this information for a few days then measure what they feel against their (probably unconscious and manipulated) notions of patriotism, duty and honor. The men and women who enlist, in short, should merely be given the opportunity to weigh the pluses against the minuses. Without this rounded portrayal, the military is basically leading lambs in to the slaughter.