“Infantrymen, on the other hand, learn that the military’s basic job is to break the enemy’s will by killing him, or threatening to. Looking at their training from the inside, infantrymen conclude that their job hasn’t fundamentally changed since the days when naked men threw spears at one another to protect their families. It’s an ancient role, and they’re proud of it.

But these days, that part of the job apparently makes America’s civilians uneasy. World War II headlines celebrated accomplished military killers and called them heroes. Second Lt. Audie Murphy mowed down dozens of attacking German soldiers, won the Medal of Honor and went on to become a movie star. Today, U.S. soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan who win medals for successfully doing their jobs while obeying the laws of war might get local coverage. But the brightest national spotlight is reserved for killers who are war criminals, such as the alleged perpetrators of the Haditha massacre, or heroes who are victims, such as prisoners of war. American civilians no longer seem comfortable labeling a soldier as both a killer and a hero.

In fact, they’re not particularly comfortable with the military in general…

‘The military is at war, but the country is not,’ warns University of Maryland sociologist David Segal. ‘And the military resents that.'”


“KILLITARY: Are America’s Armed Forces Creating Serial Killers and Mass Murderers?”