Robert D. Kaplan

Imperial Grunts: On the Ground with the American Military

Hectic read, absorbing, masterfully told. This is one writer I am going to follow from now on. Whatever you think of his style, you are not going to go bored reading his stories. I was happily surprised to notice his lack of arrogance -as one would expect to find from a reporter among this class of American heroes. The stars are the real soldiers, the military. Kaplan is there alright, but in the background.

I loved the chapters on Colombia and the Philippines. But everything was very vivid and exciting. You get to have a global sightseeing tour of American forces over the planet. You feel the humidity, you see the landscapes they see, taste the same food and live the same experiences, battlefield included.

The last chapter on Irak, Fallujah specifically was the best ending possible for this book. One can't help to identify oneself with the writer when, after the battle was ceasefired by political decision... "in Dubai. In the lobby, on the way to my room, I noticed a newstand. The front pages were all about Fallujah. I felt like a person at the center of a scandal that everybody was reading about, in which even the most accurate, balanced accounts were unconnected to what I had actually experienced and the marines I had experienced it all with. I felt deeply alienated. After I ate and showered and scrubbed my backpack, I didn't want to talk to anyone. All I wanted to do was write."

The author has a clear idea -and so depicts it- of American society:

"The soldiers and marines I encountered during months of travel with the military -whose parents and grandparents had fought in Vietnam- thought of that war as every bit as sanctified as the nation's others. As for those who saw Vietnam differently, they were generally from the more prosperous classes of Amreican society, classes which even back then were in the process of forging a global, cosmopolitan elite."

Want to know what the real world out there is like? Read this.





On Cuba's Revolution:

"The revolution was a cover for committing atrocities without the slightest vestige of guilt ... we were young and irresponsible. We were pirates. We formed our own caste ... we belonged to and believed in nothing -no religion, no flag, no morality or principle. It's fortunate we didn't win, because if we had, we would have drowned the continent in barbarism."

Jorge Masetti, In the Pirate's Den

España [por el contrario de Estados Unidos] se ha ido configurando, siglo a siglo, como una sociedad herida por la envidia, en la que todavía hacer demagogia con la pobreza rinde réditos electorales y donde los que han tenido o tienen grandes riquezas -tanto los progres como la iglesia católica– no pocas veces predican la solidaridad con el prójimo a la vez que protegen sus patrimonios nada desdeñables en SICAVs, algo, dicho sea de paso, bastante lógico tal y como está el panorama fiscal.”

César Vidal en su artículo Las razones de una diferencia en

2. La Constitución se fundamenta en la indisoluble unidad de la Nación española, patria común e indivisible de todos los españoles.

3.1. El castellano es la lengua española oficial del Estado. Todos los españoles tienen el deber de conocerla y el derecho a usarla.

'The Pale Maiden'
"Thus heaven I've forfeited,
I know it full well
My soul, once true to God
Is chosen for hell."

by Karl Marx

from Richard Wurmbrand´s book on Marx

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