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Old 02-09-2012, 10:17 PM
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Default More stupid U.S. Marines



Picture was on Knight's Armament's company blog. (I live in the same town as KAC, but I don't work there.) The full report by AP can be read on yahoo news here.

I don't buy, at all, that none of the ten guys in the pic, nor the photographer, knew that those jagged letters were the Nazi emblem. No one could be that ignorant. Not even Americans. Come on, get real. None of these dickheads ever played a WW2 FPS game while they were growing up?
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Old 02-09-2012, 10:27 PM
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I'm not at all convinced none of them knew about the German SS, but I can easily believe most don't know the full story behind them.
It's also quite possible (unfortunately) that at least one of them (probably at least the owner of it) has some fairly solid (and misguided) links to some of the more extreme groups to be found around the world.
The original SS were supposed to have been an elite force, if somewhat morally "bent". Snipers and recon troops tend to think they're also elite (warranted or not) and therefore above the laws and regulations the grunts have to live by (just like the Germans)...

[/rambling]
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Old 02-10-2012, 12:35 PM
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It's been a really bad few weeks PR-wise for the USMC. I, for one, don't buy for a second that the scout snipers in the photo didn't understand the significance of the SS runes. Is it just a coincidence that all of the men in the photo are white? There's a mystique attached to the SS (more specifically the Waffen SS) that a lot of people are attracted to, even if they don't espouse Hitler's racial beliefs. Someone in that group had to have known what the SS was all about, though. Their lame excuse is almost as insulting to the thinking public as the image itself is.

It's really rather unfortunate because the vast majority of Marines are decent and courageous people. A few bad apples get 99% of the publicity and drag the Corps' reputation through the mud.
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Old 02-10-2012, 03:36 PM
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All a misunderstanding guys. Here is the real pic...

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Old 02-10-2012, 03:39 PM
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All a misunderstanding guys. Here is the real pic...


Please tell me that IS in fact the real pic...
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Old 02-10-2012, 11:38 PM
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Please tell me that IS in fact the real pic...
'Fraid not. It's clearly been photoshopped. The KISS letters do not conform to the wavy fabric of the flag. They're a foreground object superimposed on the image. It's a nicely done amateur photo edit.
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Old 02-11-2012, 12:45 AM
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Originally Posted by ShadoWarrior View Post
None of these dickheads ever played a WW2 FPS game while they were growing up?
Or watched a movie set in Europe during the 1940s?
Or hell! Caught the right rerun of Hogan's Heroes?
My point being, even here in the States, with an educational system I rate as "could work its way up to piss poor, if we could get the political/bureaucratic bullshit out of the way", it is still easy enough to learn the more prominent symbols of the nations we went to war against. Especially when it's that particular nation, and that particular war.

And now, we reap the rewards of decades of hailing ignorance as a desirable trait.
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Old 02-11-2012, 07:11 AM
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There is nothing wrong with these Marines doing this. This is not something new people. Scout Snipers have been using sig rune style letters for a long time. SS- Scout Snipers. If this offends people, then to bad.
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Old 02-11-2012, 07:53 AM
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Yeah, too bad when some of those people sit on appropriations committees. Too bad when some of those people control the media channels that shape public opinion of the military.

- C.
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Old 02-11-2012, 07:59 AM
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It is however in extremely bad taste, especially if the practise was taken up post WWII.
The swastika itself isn't inherently and solely a nazi symbol, but rather the badge of a defunct (can't imagine why ) German car manufacturer which in turn was borrowed from an ancient fertility/sun symbol and comes in both male and female (mirror image).
Unfortunately for the symbol, it's now associated almost without exception to a very short space of time in the first half of the twentieth century.

The SS insignia as displayed in the photo has likewise come to be associated with evil and so it's use should be avoided.
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Old 02-11-2012, 08:34 AM
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Yeah, too bad when some of those people sit on appropriations committees. Too bad when some of those people control the media channels that shape public opinion of the military.

- C.
Yeah it is to bad isn't. It's to bad outsiders have so much say in stuff they know so little about.
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Old 02-11-2012, 08:43 AM
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When are people going start bitching about Jolly Roger flags and symbols. That's pirate shit....... we don't want people to think we rape, pillage, and plunder places. Or Spartan symbols.... oh no we don't want people to think we all get together and have gay orgies.
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Old 02-11-2012, 09:15 AM
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So if symbols mean nothing, why get angry when people burn the American Flag? If it means nothing why get upset? There is a power in symbols, one we shouldn't take lightly and one that can't easily be dismissed.

As for people that don't know much about a subject sticking their noses in, that's called oversight. It's the bane of every closed shop or profession or body, it can be a pain in the ass but its also what keeps us all honest.

Go figure...
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Old 02-11-2012, 09:32 AM
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Or Spartan symbols.... oh no we don't want people to think we all get together and have gay orgies.
That's more of an Athenian thing than Spartan.

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Originally Posted by waiting4something
Scout Snipers have been using sig rune style letters for a long time. SS- Scout Snipers.
No one's suggesting that SS isn't a perfectly reasonable abbreviation for Scout Snipers. That some Scout Snipers choose to render those 2 letters in exactly the same style as the Nazi SS used, well that's bound to be offensive to some people.

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If this offends people, then to bad.
Now we get to the crux of it. It's an easy thing to say, but it shows a distinct lack of empathy. If someone said something to you that you found offensive, are you saying that "then to (sic) bad" would apply to you, too? Or would you say or do something to make it known that you were offended?
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Old 02-11-2012, 09:36 AM
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There is nothing wrong with these Marines doing this. This is not something new people. Scout Snipers have been using sig rune style letters for a long time. SS- Scout Snipers. If this offends people, then to bad.
Really? This ef-the-rest-of-the-world attitude is why so many foreign people have such a low opinion of Americans. My grandfather fought in a war against the Nazis and their SS and now we're celebrating them by adopted their symbols? It's OK because the scout snipers have been using this symbol for a long time? What's your source for this? This is the first I've seen or heard anything about it.

I'm offended, but I guess that's just too bad.
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Old 02-11-2012, 10:35 AM
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Meanwhile... at waiting4something's house.



I'm just playing around with you dude. I don't mean it or anything.
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Old 02-11-2012, 03:40 PM
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There are many people in the world—the US very much included—who are far too easily offended. Being overly sensitive seems to be a part of their self-image. I agree with you, Waiting, that we should not allow freedom of speech to be dictated or circumscribed by the hypersensitive. I heartily dislike the chicanery of political correctness.

On the other hand, Nazi Germany is a special case. Pirates under the Jolly Roger have committed terrible acts, it’s true. Personally, I don’t much care for the American fascination with pirates because they were, and still are, violent criminals. This much said, Nazi Germany is a special case due to the incredible scale of Nazi atrocities and the cold-blooded, methodical, and engineered manner in which they conducted their crimes against humanity. Any reference to Nazi Germany brings huge baggage to the table.

Targan states the case against the use of SS in the style depicted on the flag more neutrally than I would. To claim that SS as shown on that flag is merely an abbreviation for “Scout Snipers” is like claiming that the Nazi-style salute, when used by a white supremacist group, is merely an alternative style of salute that is otherwise devoid of meaning or reference. Such a claim holds less water than a sieve.

Let’s get down to it, then. The use of lettering from the SS is unavoidably attached to the identity of the SS. The SS was a force of political soldiers distinct from the regular German Army. The SS performed brilliantly on the battlefield. They also ran the death camps. They were card-carrying Nazis. The placement of a flag with SS lettering underneath the American flag is a jarring juxtaposition of values, suggesting very strongly that these Marines believe that the unprecedentedly violent fascism of Nazi Germany has a place in American life. Remember that these aren’t survivalists running around in the woods on their own recognizance. These are US Marines. They swore to uphold the Constitution. Like it or not, they represent the nation. The armed forces don’t have the luxury of telling the nation they serve that being offended is just too bad when the US flag and all it represents is placed directly adjacent to symbols from Nazi Germany and all Nazi Germany represents. People should be concerned.

While I sympathize with a tendency on the part of troops—especially troops in elite units—to want to associate themselves with, emulate, and otherwise incorporate values from history’s stellar fighting men and formations, the use of Nazi symbolism anywhere in the logos, insignia, or regalia of a US military unit shows very poor judgment at the very least.
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Old 02-11-2012, 04:02 PM
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Meanwhile... at waiting4something's house.



I'm just playing around with you dude. I don't mean it or anything.
This picture disturbs me. All that beautiful milk being wasted.
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Old 02-11-2012, 04:38 PM
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For example, the Nazi use of the swastika has ruined any use of it by non-Nazi groups, despite it being a symbol thousands of years old and use widely around the world before Hitler was ever born.
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Old 02-11-2012, 04:55 PM
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For example, the Nazi use of the swastika has ruined any use of it by non-Nazi groups, despite it being a symbol thousands of years old and use widely around the world before Hitler was ever born.
It's only ruined in North America and Europe. Its meaning is still of the original in most of Asia. Even the Jews use it.
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Old 02-11-2012, 05:16 PM
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The swastika itself isn't inherently and solely a nazi symbol, but rather the badge of a defunct (can't imagine why ) German car manufacturer which in turn was borrowed from an ancient fertility/sun symbol and comes in both male and female (mirror image).
Unfortunately for the symbol, it's now associated almost without exception to a very short space of time in the first half of the twentieth century.
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For example, the Nazi use of the swastika has ruined any use of it by non-Nazi groups, despite it being a symbol thousands of years old and use widely around the world before Hitler was ever born.
Exactly the point I was making.
In the late 90's I worked in the old Customs House building in Sydney.http://www.cityofsydney.nsw.gov.au/c...ouse/heritage/
In the foyer, and right across the entire ground floor (about 400 square metres) prior to the renovation completed in 1998, the solid granite floor is inlaid with the swastika, black symbols on a white background. Both the male and female symbols are there, all about three inches across and one about every square foot. Note the date the building was constructed.

I've had the "pleasure" of trying to explain to holocaust survivors why they are there and "no, I'm sorry, I can't get a hammer and chisel and rip them all up for you while you watch". In all my years this encounter was the most extreme and emotional I've ever experienced, and I've seen some pretty nasty stuff!

Now while those symbols have every right to be where they are, there's no way in hell they would, even could be used in a new construction today.

So yes, symbols have power, usually from the actions of groups which at some point in history used and abused their original meaning.

As another example, think of the word "gay". Original meaning was simply happy, now it's homosexual. You won't find too many people using the word in it's original context any more will you?
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Old 02-11-2012, 06:22 PM
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Targan states the case against the use of SS in the style depicted on the flag more neutrally than I would.
That's because nowdays, most of the time (sometimes I slip up due to having had a drink or two or being in a bad mood), I self-censor my own posts on this forum fairly heavily. I've learned that lesson the hard way, over many years of participating here. I recall a few years ago giving my true opinion on the treatment of the Palestinian people and damn near got myself digitally lynched.
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Old 02-11-2012, 08:34 PM
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Well as a Jew, and someone who's known Marines..

1. This is not just a failure of individual common sense on the part of these Marines (and yes, it was), but a failure of a SNCO with more sense than them to grab the ringleader of this Charlie-Fox and give him a wall to wall counseling session (or whatever Marines call it).

2. What makes it worse is they juxtapose the flag with it. The same flag my grandfather bled for, He and his buddies killed plenty of folks wearing those runes on the collar. (and were killed by them) That's war, that part I get, Considering unofficial division policy was to drive any captured SS halfway back to the rear, then let them get out and run, and shoot them for "attempted escape". This was after Luneville when SS snipers had a nasty tendency to use the red cross on the helmets of division medics as an aiming point....Sorry, I don't weep for them at all. I won't talk about what happened when they liberated Ohurduf-Nord.

3. The Marines have a warrior ethos to uphold, and while the SS did fight well, it's actions off the battlefield (and yes, even the Waffen-SS wasn't immune) dishonor that ten times over at least. The Marine Corps shouldn't even want to be in the same league with that.

4. As a wargamer, I get the "celebrating elite units" bit...but there's plenty of folks in the USMC who have something to emulate; Carlos Hathcock for one? Glad HE isn't alive to see this...
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Old 02-12-2012, 12:08 PM
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I was in the camp of "man, people are just being too overly sensative these days" and that it was being blown out of proportion by the media and others. I mean, sure the letters are of the same style as the SS of Nazi Germany, but the flag is not the same flag. And I did know that the Scout Snipers had used that symbol for a while.

In other areas I've read a lot of people railing against the image, and others railing against those that rail against the image. It wasn't until I read Webstral's comments that it ever occured to me to think another way. It goes to my personal belief of Just because you can do it doesn't mean you should do it. I had this belief about people wanting to build things in particular places or certain groups choosing to petition certain things. Just because you legally can do it, doesn't mean you ethically should do it.

So should the Scout Snipers be able to use the SS abbreviation? Certainly. But should they use the same general style as that used by the SS of Nazi Germany? They can, but they shouldn't.

With the advent of camera phones in everyone's pocket now, it's fairly evident you can't even take a piss without someone taking a picture of it anymore, so people have to take that into consideration as to their actions and the images they use. What may have flown even 20 years ago simply is too potentially incriminating anymore to use/say/do.

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Old 02-12-2012, 01:44 PM
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Oh shit, if I have to explain what is wrong with that flag, you're too clueless to absorb ANY explanation. History, folks, HISTORY! I'd love to know the percentage of neo-Nazis in that gaggle.
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Old 02-12-2012, 02:07 PM
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I've been waiting a long time for some reason or other to post this.

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Old 02-12-2012, 02:21 PM
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Tut tut, Fuse, I never had you down as a kitten apologist...
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Old 02-12-2012, 03:26 PM
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I've been waiting a long time for some reason or other to post this.
Interesting. However, for the sake of argument, there are (at least) three things wrong with the premise to the pic's caption:
  1. Just because the Waffen-SS soldiers are playing with a kitten doesn't mean that they would have any qualms whatsoever about murdering a human.
  2. We don't know that they didn't throw the kitten to some dogs to tear apart after the pic was taken.
  3. A few (or even many) "not bad" SS troops in no way absolves the many other SS troops who committed atrocities.
The picture smacks of having been taken by the Reich propaganda ministry, whether it was or not.
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Old 02-12-2012, 03:41 PM
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WATCH OUT!
The kitten's got a grenade!!!!
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Old 02-12-2012, 03:46 PM
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A few (or even many) "not bad" SS troops in no way absolves the many other SS troops who committed atrocities.
The only problem with that particular line of thinking is the use of it on military forces of your own nation (this applies to any nation). If some of the military ends up committing atrocities, does it make every one of the people in the same unit, regardless of the number of the "not bad" people, equally as bad as those that committed the atrocity? Or does it make those that commited the atrocity the real bad people and the rest of them the easy scapegoat?

Mind you, I'm not saying that there weren't terrible people in the SS. I'm just saying the simply by being in a unit doesn't mean you are automatically terrible, which is what too many people believe.
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