Friday, February 04, 2005

Give 'em Hell General Mattis

Speaking during a panel discussion hosted by the Armed Forces Communications and Electronics Association on Tuesday, decorated Marine Corps General James Mattis reportedly said the following:

"Actually, it's a lot of fun to fight. You know, it's a hell of a hoot. ... It's fun to shoot some people. I'll be right upfront with you, I like brawling."

He added, "You go into Afghanistan (news - web sites), you got guys who slap women around for five years because they didn't wear a veil. You know, guys like that ain't got no manhood left anyway. So it's a hell of a lot of fun to shoot them."
The remarks have created a minor kerfuffle among the politically correct, but isn't this the type of guy we want out there - someone willing and eager to kill bad guys? From the General's remarks, its seems he's clearly speaking about Taliban thugs, not innocent civilians and don't we want those thugs dead? The left seemed pretty enthusiastic about John Kerry's "heroics" in Vietnam and I didn't see much hand wringing over the account of his leaping from his boat to gun down a wounded enemy combatant.

As Jonah Goldberg, writing in The Corner, points out, its not as if soldiers (and marines) never spoke like this before. General Mattis has a long way to go before matching General Patton, who once told his troops in a speech:

"We'll win this war, but we'll win it only by fighting and by showing the Germans that we've got more guts than they have; or ever will have. We're not going to just shoot the sons-of-bitches, we're going to rip out their living Goddamned guts and use them to grease the treads of our tanks. We're going to murder those lousy Hun cocksuckers by the bushel-fucking-basket. War is a bloody, killing business. You've got to spill their blood, or they will spill yours. Rip them up the belly. Shoot them in the guts. When shells are hitting all around you and you wipe the dirt off your face and realize that instead of dirt it's the blood and guts of what once was your best friend beside you, you'll know what to do!"
AP's story on the comments comes with the typical left-wing, anti-American slant that would make Reuters proud. Take their headline for example "General Counseled Over 'Fun to Shoot' Talk". What does "counseled' imply? Psychiatric counseling? Sensitivity counseling? No. He is "being counseled to watch his words more carefully".

The story also contains the disingenuous remark that General Mattis "also made fun of the manhood of Afghans". Again, its clear from the comments quoted that the reference was to thugs "who slap women around for five years because they didn't wear a veil". Nice to see AP standing up for the abuse of women. Look for them to defend the stoning of an adulteress any day now.

Finally, to put a bow on it, the story concludes with the mandatory quote from a CAIR spokesman: "We do not need generals who treat the grim business of war as a sporting event," said the council's executive director, Nihad Awad. "These disturbing remarks are indicative of an apparent indifference to the value of human life." This coming from a man who's coreligionists blow themselves up and say they pray for death. AP identifies CAIR as a "Muslim civil liberties group" - funny I don't recall seeing any CAIR condemnations of the human rights abuses that occur every day in the Muslim world.

Other Commentary

Blogs for Bush said the same thing a day earlier.

Macubin Thomas Owens has some good comments up on the Ashbrook Center's No Left Turns posting, citing General Mattis' message to his troops as they prepared to cross over into Iraq which included this passage:
Our fight is not with the Iraqi people, nor is it with members of the Iraqi army who choose to surrender. While we will move swiftly and aggressively against those who resisit, we will treat all others with decency, demonstrating chivalry and soldierly compassion for people who have endured a lifetime under Saddam’s oppression.
Best of the Web picked up the item today and has a link to the Reuters story on the comments, which, surprisingly, is much more balanced than AP's. You guys at Reuters need to stay on your toes - if this keeps up AP might replace you as Taranto's "news service" of choice.