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February 15, 2010


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Why on earth did they distribute that on the island? To me, it seems more like the kind of (bad) propaganda that would be intended for the homefront, for the Americans themselves.

What did you think of Eastwood's "Heartbreak Ridge", then?


J. J.

I haven't thought about it since, well, 1986. I'll have to see it again. At the time, I thought that it's characterization of the invasion was fine; ditto for the positive homecoming.

I suspect that the training scenes will seem silly when I watch the film again.

What's your opinion of the movie?

Frankly, what seemed silly to me in the film was the larger-than-life-vindication-of-national-traumas value which the movie gave to an ordinary, small-scale military operation, basically a small police action.

The movie dwells on the memories of Korea and the agony of the defeat of Vietnam, and eventually presents the invasion of Grenada as a restoration of the American military honor. That final quote, Well, Chooz, I guess we're not 0-1-1 anymore? Please. Did people in the United States, let alone military men, honestly place such a grand national significance on the operation?

So yeah. The film seems to be sort of in the same category with that comic book. I may be wrong, but my impression is that this propaganda stemmed precisely from the feelings of impotence caused by Vietnam, the Eagle Claw and the more recent Beirut affair. Leaving aside the justification of the operation - and I would agree with your assessment - it seems pretty obvious that Grenada was also presented as some kind of a generic Viagra for the nation. Which does, in retrospect, seem pretty desperate.

I suppose that the later action in Panama was at least a bit more credible in that respect. And the First Iraq War, of course, provided the ultimate remasculinization.


J. J.

I can't decide whether it's a good or bad thing that the Grenada crisis occured when it did.

On one hand, the intervention lacked moral ambiguity. In that sense, then, if the U.S. had to be dragged into a military intervention anywhere in the context of the early 1980s, best that it be one that was in fact almost unimpeachable.

On the other hand, given the context, how could any observer not doubt the motives? It's unfair to the intervention itself, as well as the people who encouraged, ordered, and participated in it. Far more ambiguous wars --- and both Panama and Gulf War 1 were more ambiguous --- got far more moral credit.

Ni modo.

How many of you have actually ever visited Grenada? I have. I spent 14 days in Grenada W. I. in December 2001.

People there really think that U.S. (+ Jamaican) troops freed them. They are still grateful to USA for that.

Do You know this any better? If so, why? Should I trust You - instead of the very same people who were born there and still lived in Grenada?

Hello, Jukka!

I'm curious: did you read what I wrote above? I opened with: “Look, I’ll cop to supporting the invasion of Grenada.”

And right before I linked to the silly comic book, I ended with, “Veterans of Operation Urgent Fury should hold their heads up high; you would have to go back to World War 2 to find a case of a more just war.”

So I'm a little insulted that you have somehow convinced yourself that I think the invasion was a bad idea.

And if your comments are aimed at Jussi, then I'm equally flabbergasted. His comments are all about the position of the invasion in the United States.

I scratch my head here, Jukka.

Sorry, Noel. My mistake.

No, worries --- and I honestly thank you for the acknowledgment! My day, you made, sir.

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