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The Daily Kos Post Of The Day: Do We Need A Bomber Pilot For A President?

Written By : John Hawkins
July 29, 2008

Back in 2004, when the Democrats were running a candidate who had served in Vietnam against George Bush, who had only served in the National Guard, we were endlessly told how important it was to have a President who had actually served in the military — and, no, serving in the National Guard didn’t count to the Left.

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However, now that the Republicans have a candidate who has served in the military and the Democrats are running a man who, by their own definition, is 10 times more of a “chickenhawk” than George Bush has ever been, suddenly military service is actually a negative.

Take a look at excerpts from this Daily Kos diary by Wee Mama and you will see what I mean,

One aspect of McCain’s presidency that I have not seen addressed is the precise form of his military experience. We have had good presidents with military experience – Eisenhower and Carter come to mind – as well as good ones without it – FDR and Clinton, to name two.

But military experience is not all equal. Slogging through the mud is not the same as calibrating a nuclear submarine. And of all the possible military experiences, that of bomber pilot to me is most suspect.

It can be argued whether bomber pilots are needed at all. Certainly some of their runs, such as the Dresden firestorm, are now seen as war crimes. But let us grant for the purpose of the arguement that there are limited appropriate uses for bombers in a just war. How does being a bomber pilot shape the person who experiences it?

Of all forms of warfare, bombing is the most ethereal, the most detached from the human carnage and suffering it causes. Down below, on the ground, children are bleeding, mothers are crying, fathers are scattered in small pieces and towns burn. Above, in the heavens, the pilot sees only flowers of fire bloom in precise rows, elegant punctuated lines of clouds of dust. Bombing is of all forms of warfare the one least suited to teaching the true consequences of actions.

I don’t want a bomber pilot for a president.

So, there you go. If you’re an American bomber pilot, you may be guilty of “war crimes,” probably aren’t “needed at all,” and certainly aren’t fit to be President. That tells you a lot about how the Kossacks view the military.

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