A headline about drones made me think. What happened to bravery?
Once upon a time, brave men served in the military and fought face-to-face or radar-to-radar. Remember the film, Top Gun? These pilots were the type of warrior young boys and cowardly men admired.
Now, “pilots” sit in containers in Nevada or somewhere equally safe and, more or less, play video games. The problem is that real people die, and one cannot re-set to the beginning. Screams of the wounded or relatives of the dead are unheard and, perhaps, even the anguished faces go unseen. No one seems to care about the aftermath, only the “hit”.
American politicians are so afraid of losing the life of a single soldier in one of their useless (except for profiteers...to include politicians accepting “bribes”) wars, that they do not care about the people dying needlessly. The original target might or might not be legitimate (no trial is ever held), but what has come to be acceptable to US leaders--collateral damage: a euphemism for a murdered human being--is anything by legitimate. This latest form of “combat” is cowardly. Top Gun is now a sissy and no better than a playground bully...but far more deadly.
I wonder if these “pilots” receive flight pay and are awarded medals for “combat” bravery. The military thrives on decorations: just look at the colored thread and base metals plastered on the uniforms of high-ranking officers...even when no wars were/are being fought. And, I’m not talking about members of England’s royal family.
The only danger faced by this new bred of “warrior” is that of being stopped by the police after a boozy night in nearby Las Vegas. I doubt remorse--neither for drinking and driving nor for murdering innocent civilians in a far-off land--ever tarnished a day or night. The gallant cavalryman of days long gone has been replace by someone cavalier.
Prior to writing novels, the author enjoyed a multifaceted career: from decorated combat aviator to advertising professional to global communications director of a major consumer brand. He has traveled the world and met sports, film and television stars, political leaders, and royalty. He graduated from Middlebury College, is married, lives in Germany, and has two grown children.