Tuesday, July 12, 2005

The US military: fucking pussies.

Aaaaw! Are the poor liddle soldiers scared of the nasty tewwowists? Diddums.

Update: I'm still trying to work this out (as, apparently, is the British government). Is the US saying that London's more dangerous than Iraq? Than Afghanistan? What's happened to "our closest ally" and all that other guff? Haven't they heard that we're not afraid? Or do they know something we don't? Either way - bloody stupid PR move there guys...

27 Comments:

Blogger PopeBenedictXVI said...

Pathetic isn't it? I presume this kind of hysteria is what we get in return for sending British troops out to risk their lives Iraq? Oh, the "special relationship" strikes again.

But there is hope. If everyone on Earth came together under one united banner, such as Confusionism, we wouldn't have terrorism. You'll have to come along to http://www.cyber-pope.blogspot.com for more information.

7/12/2005 10:12:00 am  
Blogger Voice 1 said...

It is rather pathetic. Rather like those US troops running away from camels in Afghanistan, remember that?

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/south_asia/1705341.stm

Just days after the warning from US intelligence services, soldiers guarding Camp Rhino at night say they saw a camel running inside the camp compound.

They were so alarmed by the appearance of the camel that they opened fire, but when they went to investigate it afterwards the animal had mysteriously disappeared.

"It was a pretty crazy night," recalls Lance Corporal Jesse Mendoza. "I had my NVGs (night vision goggles) on and I saw a big old camel running in the compound," the 20-year-old from Fresno, California said.

And Mr Mendoza was not the only one to see the beast. Its sudden appearance caused several spooked marines to fire off their guns.

7/12/2005 10:49:00 am  
Anonymous Lobster Blogster said...

I think it's a jolly good idea to make London an American Free Zone (AFZ). I've set up my own "I'm not afraid" type thing here.

7/12/2005 11:21:00 am  
Blogger PopeBenedictXVI said...

To help our greatest ally, I've set up a "hand-holding rapid response unit" to help out the US Air Force when visiting London.

Come visit me at:

http://www.cyber-pope.blogspot.com

7/12/2005 11:40:00 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

We seem to have shamed them into behaving themselves...

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/4673987.stm

Chris

7/12/2005 11:52:00 am  
Blogger Andrew said...

I have some sympathy for the Yanks here. It seems to be an immediate (and sensible) order issued on Thursday, as there's nothing an Islamist likes blowing up more than an off-duty marine. Better not to give them the publicity boost. Not rescinding the order is probably bad PR, but it does make sense. Having GI's travelling on the tube just makes it more dangerous for us average commuters - they're a target. It's grown-up of the US to recognise that, and silly of (particularly) the BBC to make such a fuss.

I see they've now rescinded it. Ah well...

7/12/2005 12:19:00 pm  
Anonymous Chris R said...

Bit late now.

When the chips are down....

7/12/2005 12:34:00 pm  
Anonymous Clarence Darrow said...

As commented on the BBC's website, the British army has long put areas of Northern Ireland "off-limits" to military personnel. Not just for a few days after a bombing, but for years. Is that also "pathetic"?

The decision by a local commander (per the Guardian) was little different that the London police department, which was "urging people not to come into the British capital unless necessary." [CNN, 8 july].

All your bitterly anti-American comments achieve is to convey that our small island is inhabited by some very small people.

7/12/2005 12:36:00 pm  
Anonymous Chris R said...

As a Northern Irishman, maybe I can shed a little light on your pathetic little argument. I am well aware of the bars that the British Army were and were not allowed to drink in. People were adept at spotting a squaddie because of the territorial nature of the communities, ie they weren't a familiar face. You always ran the risk of getting singled out regardless of whether you were military or not if your face didn't fit. And thats not even getting anywhere near the "Whats your name?" and "What school did you go to?" questions.

However, London is such a large and diverse community that these rules don't apply. Especially on a Tube for example. People blend in, and are gone in a second. How are you to tell one American from another? And thats not even considering the Canadians you could get confused with.

I don't consider myself to be Anti-American, I know for a fact that my American friends would agree with my comments. The security argument is fallacious. The American military choked, it was alright for civvies to go about running the risk of getting blown to bits while Bush splurged his shoulder to shoulder bollocks.

Feel free to come back at me.

7/12/2005 12:55:00 pm  
Blogger Nosemonkey said...

Ditto Chris R on this.

Clarence, old boy, the Northern Ireland situation isn't even slightly comparable, and you know it.

As for the frankly silly accusations of anti-Americanism, my views on that can be found here. But to summarise, what you're doing there is you're mistaking a criticism of a particular military order with hatred of the United States and everything it stands for.

My reaction to this news has nothing to do with an aversion to America (which I rather like, bar the current president), everything to do with hoping that life can carry on as normally as possible following Thursday's mass-murders.

7/12/2005 01:12:00 pm  
Anonymous Eric S (Washington DC) said...

Isn't it possible to draw a distinction between a poorly thought-out order from above, and American soldiers themselves?

Are you really willing to make the broad generalization that American soldiers are a bunch of camel-shooting morons who are afraid of terrorists and dromedaries?

If so, you don't know a damned thing about the typical American soldier.

7/12/2005 01:37:00 pm  
Anonymous Clarence said...

Nosemonkey:

You wrote that I am "mistaking a criticism of a particular military order with hatred of the United States".

Please re-read the initial post on "Europhobia", which states: "The U.S. military: fucking pussies."

That is not "a criticism of a particular military order."

I disagree with you and chris r re Northern Ireland: areas are placed off limits to troops because is a perceived risk. You and chris and I can argue and simply disagree about whether or not any given decision was reasonable (I think it's pretty easy to spot off-duty military personnel), but that doesn't warrant the "fucking pussies" remark.

You (and chris r) also ignored my citing of the well-publicized request of the London police on Friday to avoid travelling into London unless absolutely necessary (quoted on CNN and on BBC). Was that "pathetic" also?

When the British Army or the London police advise people to avoid a given area, and no one here comments; but when a local US commander tells US personnel to avoid London for five days, you folks get your drawers in a knot.

Yes, that is "anti-American", and it sounds more like an inferiority complex that a rational criticism. As I wrote, it makes our small island apprear inhabited by a lot of small people.

7/12/2005 01:38:00 pm  
Anonymous Eric S (Washington DC) said...

...and I should also add that it's understandable that someone might think you're "Anti-American" when the title of the entry is "The US military: fucking pussies."

A more apt title might have been "The US officer who issued this order: fucking clueless".

Just a thought.

7/12/2005 01:41:00 pm  
Blogger Nosemonkey said...

Hyperbole for comic effect obviously mistaken here, I see...

Clarence - it's the five days thing which is the problem. An initialy warnign to avoid london while the security situation was still unknown, fine. But continuing for days after the event is what I objected to - especially after all us poor commuters have had to return to work, some via the tube/bus network which was hit. It seems, however, that they may now have seen sense.

Eric - you are probably right on the title of the post. We're all a tad het up here, though...

7/12/2005 02:06:00 pm  
Blogger Nosemonkey said...

Bloody hell - my typing's gone to shit. Shouldn't have had those beers at lunchtime I see...

7/12/2005 02:09:00 pm  
Anonymous Katie Bartleby said...

Ahem, saying one is anti or pro america is silly. Nobody who unthinking accepts or unthinkingly rejects an entire country's output is worth listening to. It's the difference between loving your Mummy unconditionally when you're five and loving your partner with all his/her faults. Baby love? Or grown-up love? I know what I'd choose.

A little more on-topic: an expat blog I read, An American in London has this reaction:

"I am furious at the news this morning that US troops have been ordered to stay out of London, for fear of their own safety. I hope that the news regarding this is seriously misinformed and that the matter will be cleared up by the end of the day. I cannot honestly believe that the "greatest military in the world" is taking the official stance that they are too chicken shit to cross the M25. I have a hard enough time defending America when American leaders aren't acting like Goddammed idiots. Now this.

After all, if London isn't safe enough for 12,000 heavily trained United States Air Force soldiers, what the fuck am I doing here?"

So it's not just the anti-americans that think this was a bad PR move.

7/12/2005 02:48:00 pm  
Anonymous Eric S (Washington DC) said...

I suppose I was dimly aware that it was probably for comic effect; write it off to foolishly reading a Brit-blog before my morning coffee.

It certainly seems like a senseless (though perhaps well-intentioned) order, though. Public relations has never really been the strong point of the US military, though.

A bit off-topic, but it may interest you to know that the gates to the British Embassy here in DC are still completely buried in flowers, pro-Brit signs, and Union Jacks. It's an impressive sight.

Brilliant blog, though, Nosemonkey, even if you are a raving Anti-American bastard. I suppose the only thing I can do is try to build a bridge of pint glasses from DC to London. 10 quid on the way for the boys in blue...

7/12/2005 03:10:00 pm  
Blogger Nosemonkey said...

Eric, old boy, nice to see no hard feelings - and ta for the donation to the fund! It's about time you guys started paying us back for all that tea you ruined in Boston Harbour after all... ;)

7/12/2005 03:17:00 pm  
Anonymous Chris R said...

Hi Clarence,

I can't help but feel you are brushing over the reasons for British troops having restricted areas in NI. We both agree that they exist, but you have to understand why they exist, and you will find that those reasons are very different to the London situation. No one was going near London on Thursday or Friday if they could help it, (although I did go through London on Friday, but thats neither here nor there.) As Nosemonkey points out, its five days after that really sticks in our craws. I mean think about it from another angle. John Reid came out and said the US response was sensible. But why was it sensible for US troops not to go into the capital while it was alright for the average Joe Bloggs to go to work to keep the economy ticking over. Viewed that way, the Government looks on us as a pack of worker ants, expendible. So either the Government or the US got it right. And apart from all this it is still awful PR.

Why do we still have US bases here 13 or 14 years after the fall of the USSR? Just a question, not trying to stir anti-american sentiment.

7/12/2005 03:17:00 pm  
Blogger Nosemonkey said...

Chris - re: the bases, I'd imagine its the same reason we've still got a military presence in Germany... Habit.

At least, I HOPE that's the reason. I know Shroder's been a tad miffed recently, but not THAT much, surely?

7/12/2005 03:20:00 pm  
Anonymous Chris R said...

Very nice! I had forgotten about Osnabruck etc! Mind you, even if we pissed off Schroder, I think we would find plenty of support in Germany! Not exactly flavour of the month. I wonder how much money we could save by pulling out of Germany etc? Having said that, I can think of a lot of Squaddies who would have something to say about losing their Cyprus holiday camps.

7/12/2005 03:32:00 pm  
Anonymous Monica In Austin said...

As an American, I'm disappointed with the order that was given asking the US military to temporarily stay out of London, but I find I'm more disappointed by the post saying Americans are fucking pussies.

Nice one, Thanks.

7/12/2005 07:20:00 pm  
Blogger Bedrock Guy said...

Friends, the order applied to airmen of the Air Force, not soldiers of the American Army.

In addition, it was a prudent short term reaction by the AF commander. Any local commander would do it in the immediate aftermath of an attack off base of the installation.

As for the guy who called us "pussies", well...that wasn't very nice. No more beer for you.

Enjoy the blog and I hope all our friends in Britain are doing well and that we catch the scum still at large who participated in the attacks.

7/12/2005 09:46:00 pm  
Blogger Nosemonkey said...

Note to self: now that my traffic has soared beyond belief, new visitors may not be used to my style of humour. Should have realised it was likely to be taken at face value.

Rest assured, I don't ACTUALLY think the US military are a bunch of pussies... It was, however, a particularly bad bit of PR, and the order should have been rescinded on Friday at the latest - after all, that's when everyone had to go back to work.

7/12/2005 10:50:00 pm  
Blogger Lobster Blogster said...

The thing that scares me is the "I'm not afraid" crew. When people loose their fear they do all sorts of silly things.

Sorry, not worried about silly things, for silly read dangerous.

7/12/2005 11:16:00 pm  
Anonymous Zuke said...

Big fan of your blog Nosemonkey. As an American, and a USAF member serving in the UK (in and around London), I was slightly pissed that the order stood for so long. These kinds of orders, however, are common. After ANY kind of incident, you can pretty much expect some kind of travel restriction depending on the severity of the attack. The commander was acting prudently, within the bounds of his authority, to restrict Lakenheath and Mildenhall personnel travel. I don't think he expected the Beeb, and the rest of the relentless UK press, to make such a big deal out of it.

You have to admit, though, the press was blowing it WAY out of proportion. Not all US military were restricted. Hell, I live right outside the M25, and our support units are in London.

In response to Chris R's question about the American presence in western European countries. I think in the next 5-10 years, you're going to see a significant shift away from these military bases. My personal opinion only, so no conspiratorial chit-chat please. I'd be willing to bet that some eastern-European countries would be more than happy to host an American base or two, and we'd be more than happy to relocate to a more strategic location. The Germans, for all their anti-American bluster, are going to be screaming hell-fire when they kiss all those American dollars bye-bye. Perhaps a bit egotistical on my part, but I think the primary stumbling block for a withdrawal back to the states, or to a new location in Eastern Europe, isn't going to be logistics...it'll be the local economies that are sure to suffer when those 10,000 troops and their families take a hike.

Anyhoo, Nosemonkey...I'm more than used to the friendly banter. My RAF counterparts and I are always in a little tit-for-tat about US/UK foreign policy. I enjoy it...and I appreciate a little kick in the groin every once and a while. Keeps the head deflated. Having served in the UK more than once, and the desert countless times, I know the Blokes will always be there for us, and us for them.

Cheers!

7/12/2005 11:52:00 pm  
Anonymous KathyF said...

Zuke said it well. I'm in a similar situation, but I read it a bit differently.

Americans (and their commanders) have this idea that American blood is to be protected at all costs, whereas foreign blood is of less value.

I was annoyed that a road in front of a building in London where American military personnel work was blocked off for long after the "incidents" occurred, in order to protect the Americans who worked in the building, including my husband.

All Londoners were at risk that day, not just Americans who happen to be here. Having police protection for Americans that exceeded that offered to the rest of London stinks.

7/13/2005 10:23:00 am  

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