Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Mickey goes to war

Are we a militaristic nation? I don’t think many Americans would characterize us that way, yet our compunction to solve the world’s problems with bullets and bombs, our almost spiritual reverence of those who fight our wars and the continuing attempts by the NRA to arm every man, woman and child has to make one stop and wonder. And now this.

Today’s Washington Post reports that the Army “[is] considering allowing a private developer to build a 125-acre entertainment, hotel and conference center complex next to a national Army museum at Fort Belvoir that could draw more than 1 million people a year to traffic choked southern Fairfax County.”

It’s a military theme park, complete with M-1 tank rides for the kids and an entertainment district “…with bars like the “1st Division Lounge.”

The “visitor destination concept,” as the Army euphemistically refers to it, is actually a stroke of malevolent brilliance. How better to fill the ranks of the military in the future than by starting to indoctrinate the fertile minds of pre-schoolers today? “Mommy, when I grow up I wanna fly a Cobra Gunship.”

What appears to be left out of the plans for this Disneyland in fatigues is the actual consequences of war—death and destruction. The Post didn’t mention anything about the M.A.S.H. unit tour, where families can “…wallow in pools of blood as surgeons saw off limbs and cram intestines back into body cavities.” Or the ever popular, “Enemy Village Ride,” that takes you through a recently bombed hamlet and past the grotesquely broken and burned bodies of women and children.

Glorifying war and violence? Naw, it’s all good, clean fun at the Bloodiest Place on Earth.

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