7 thoughts on “When Elites Don’t Fight”

  1. I served in the US Air Force and reserves for 26 years. My son served 22. My father served more than 30 years, my mother for 8, my uncles for 4 or more each…..

    I certainly don’t recommend my nephews, their kids, or my grandkids serve in todays military….

    1. Yep. 22 years myself. Unless things change, I will actively try to convince my grandkids not to join.

  2. I also come from a family with a lot of military experience. My father served, as did most of my uncles. My brother and I served, as did most of my male cousins. Both of my sons served. Today, I have four teenaged grandchildren, and I would actively discourage any of them from joining the military. The biggest reason is that the so-called “leadership” has lost their military focus and has sold out to politics. That nonsense is going to get a lot of American service-members killed the next time shooting starts, and that’s likely to happen soon. I’m unwilling to sacrifice my grandchildren on the altar of political correctness or wokism. My family has done enough. If the self-described “elites” (they keep using that word, but it doesn’t mean what they think it means) aren’t willing to risk their own blood, why should I?

  3. Teddy Roosevelt had three sons at the front in WWI, one KIA, the other two seriously wounded. FDR had all four sons under fire. JFK came close to getting killed. GHW Bush got shot down. It didn’t used to be the way it is now.

    1. Teddy’s eldest, Theodore Roosevelt Jr, would be the only general officer to land at Normandy on D-Day, dying of a heart attack a month later and being awarded the Medal Of Honor.

    2. JFK’s older brother Joseph P Kennedy Jr. was killed in action when his B-24 went down.

      The explosive-laden B-24 bomber was intended as a remote-controlled missile against a high-value target in WW-II Occupied France. The Wikipedia article says something about a V-2 rocket site whereas another source said something about a German “supergun” for long-range bombardment of England known as the “V-3”, which would put England in much greater peril than the V-2 that Freeman Dyson called “a German disarmament plan” because each rocket cost more than a desperately needed fighter aircraft.

      The British approach, if memory serves me, was a “bunker-buster” bomb developed by British armaments designer Barnes Wallis of a skip bomb of “The Dam Busters” fame. The American approach was to rig a B-24 with explosives, have the crew bail out for rescue in advance of reaching the target, and have a companion plane direct the B-24 by radio control to crash into the target.

      The claim is that the fuse was susceptible to radio-frequency interference with the radio steering link, and the engineer who warned of this problem was ignored. This resulted in the accidental detonation of Joe Kennedy Jr’s plane.

      Joseph Kennedy Sr. certainly had the ambition of become the US President, but during his service as Ambassador to Great Britain where, let’s just say he was Black Pilled regarding Britain’s chances against the Nazi onslaught, and in the aftermath of the US entry into WW-II on the side of Great Britain in the aftermath of Pearl Harbor, his chances were effectively shot. But the “Old Man” retained the ambition of accomplishing this by proxy, and the designated son was the eldest, Joseph Jr., whose service in combat removed this limitation.

      I remember my Mom watching a Public Television program about the Biblical account of Abraham being willing offer his son as a blood sacrifice at the Lord’s command, that is, until the Lord set an angel to stay Abraham’s hand. The Christian interpretation was that this was a prefiguring of the Father sacrificing the Son on the cross for the salvation of mankind, a complicated enough explanation even if you received religious education as a Christian.

      The program offered a yet more complicated explanation from a rabbi informed by Jewish religious teaching.

      Mom wasn’t buying any of this, asking me with respect to Abraham’s obedience to the Lord’s command as spoken at the time, “How could a man even contemplate doing this to his son?”

      I said, “That one is easy, Mom. The account of Abraham communicates moral truth at different levels, and think of it as a metaphor for the world of powerful men. Think of the old-man Joe Kennedy sending his sons off to war.” As Mom was a Catholic Christian who understood the Bible can have multiple meanings, and for Mom being obsessed with everything about the Kennedy Family, my explanation made perfect sense as, “Why didn’t I think of that?”

      The explanation I have heard in Evangelical circles is that Abraham had such deep faith in promises made to him about siring a great nation, that he was certain that this was a test of his belief in those promises and that the Lord would stay his hand. There may have been a similar faith on the part of Joe Kennedy Sr., a sinner according to some accounts of his behavior towards women but at the same time a devout Catholic. Joe Jr. enjoyed the Lord’s protection, surviving his tour of duty of multiple combat missions, but then he had the calling to volunteer for an extra, incredibly dangerous mission. Joe Sr., I heard, was especially heart broken about the loss of his eldest, favored son under those circumstances.

      As far as the Kennedy sons being proxies for the Old Man’s political ambitions, some even regarding JFK as a puppet of his father, there is the famous debate between Lloyd Bentsen and Dan Quayle. Senator Quayle was mocked for dodging “serious service” in Viet Nam by softer duty with the Indiana National Guard.

      Quayle “let slip” that his brother “served in the Marine Corps”, hinting that his family suffered one son to be sent to Viet Nam yet exercised influence to hold the other son back. Nothing more was said about this, perhaps the Senator or perhaps presidential candidate and WW-II combat veteran George H. W. Bush deciding to not “push” this point on a hostile press corps.

      So when Quayle was scolded by Bentsen with, “You sir, are no Jack Kennedy.” My parents were shouting at the TV set, “I’ll have to ask my father about that!”

      I suggest that “elites once did not withhold their children from military service” may gloss over venal reasons why elites offered their children for service when the human tendency would be to exercise influence to hold them back. Current elites withhold their children from military service, also for venal reasons, namely that military service no longer services as a “ticket punch” for those seeking power through high political office?

      1. I believe Old Joe sent his sons to war because he knew military experience would be a prerequisite for postwar political office. Young Joe volunteered for a very dangerous mission, part of Operation Aphrodite, and was killed when his plane exploded.

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