American Army: A modest proposition

Nestor Gorojovsky nestorgoro at
Thu Jul 24 08:09:49 MDT 2003

Mark Lause:

"For centuries, military service has been one of the few options
presented working class youth for being of service to their society.
Certainly, this remained true when I was growing up blue collar in a
small town in the heart of the U.S.  A lot of those people over there
RIGHT NOW are in uniform for honorable and decent reasons.  We
believe that that honorable and decent impulses are ultimately
incompatible with the  class interests that write their orders.  This
social and political experience involves a wrenching and very
personal experience for them that needs.  It falls to us to support
our troops--not the regime, not the government, not the army, but the
men and women in uniform--in this way."

This is an issue where I am somehow shy because I can do nothing to
help in actual struggle. But maybe what follows can be useful.

It is my general impression, as per press reports from the USA, that
after the Viet Nam war the US Army has bent towards mercenaries
against general draft. People are offered a Dreamland life if they
only join the Army (Navy, etc.) Which explains, for example, the high
proportions of Hispano, etc., family names that have appeared on the
newspapers concerning the invaders: "Join us and become a citizen".

That is, American imperialist armies are no longer organized on the
basis of the "soldier-citizen" but, rather, recruited by the  "press
system"  as Marx recalled of England on _Capital, I_. Only that it is
a very particular "press system" where economic and social coaction
is much more important than actual thuds.

The American press system, thus, hinges on the opportunities for a
better life that the Army or the Navy can offer, just like working
for some big corporation may be safer than working for a small retail
shop in town. "Be a part of our great family, don't work for the
local gangster. It is safer here"...

The fact is, however, "safer" includes a growing certainty that if
you go to war you can be dead. Thus, one should imagine that the
sources of cannon fodder for the military may dry up, that they will
confront a "supply side" problem if the "jobs" begin to look too
dangerous. It may become more fruitful to work for the local
gangster, in the end...

Perhaps there might be a veneer for action there, like "The Army
kills. Not only foreigners, it can also kill you".

All the above, of course, said in the most respectful way for people
who are actually trying to work within the belly of the Beast.

Néstor Miguel Gorojovsky
nestorgoro at

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"Sí, una sola debe ser la patria de los sudamericanos".
Simón Bolívar al gobierno secesionista y disgregador de
Buenos Aires, 1822
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