I think of this definition every time I hear the phrase or see a sign or bumper sticker that says “support our troops.” This slogan has been twisted into a mantra employed to blind Americans to the death and destruction that’s the inevitable result of our interventionist foreign policy. As an editor of a daily news service, I think of this every time I watch or read a news report of a young soldier coming home and seeing his six-month- or year-old child for the first time. I think of this every time I see a young Marine coming home with his limbs blown off. I think of this every time I see another body bag or flag-draped coffin.
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Samuel Johnson said,“Patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel.” H.L. Mencken expanded that definition when he said, “Patriotism, in truth, is the great nursery of scoundrels.… Its chief glories are the demagogue, the military bully, and the spreaders of libels and false history.”
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