TITLE: Big Guns
By Dean Herring
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Dean Herring 2002
A So you’ve been throwing stones at the enemy?
B Yes in the circumstances I thought it would be more effective than flicking rubber bands, although that has merits of its own
A Shall we review the given circumstances for a moment
B I’m sitting in my vehicle
A Your vehicle being? Precisely
B An M112 Abrams
A A Tank
A Equipped with?
B Caterpillar tracks!
B Swivel Turret.
B Well a few other things. A peep hole thing and water-tanks, ahhh steeering wheel, speedo….
A Whats the big pointy thing sticking out the front?
B What the gun? All tanks have guns!
A I see so in the given circumstances of sitting in a Tank equipped with a whooping big gun..
A Like I said a whooping big gun, and you decided the most effective attack would be throwing rocks, perhaps you were out of ammunition
B No but guns well they’re really a bit passe, a bit politically incorrect.
A Are we fighting a war here or running a creche
B Well that’s a very good question really and one I’ve spent some considerable time pondering and if I do say so myself it’s a good thing you asked me
A I’m so happy, enlighten me
B From your position I can accept that it may be a little difficult to see that down here at grass roots level, on the ground floor so to speak, where all the action actually occurs, there is a feeling of acceptance. A growing groundswell of support for a peaceful resolution to this conflict.
A I see and this would be a mutual feeling or just something within our own ranks.
B Well to be brutally honest we have very few truly effective fighting units as it is but a lot of dug in entrenched positions. These positions are of course defended honourably and valiantly… Having had a few friendly chats with the enemy..
A As you do..
B Well it doesn’t pay to be merciless, anyway what they’re saying is that their side are willing to accept our conditions and want to find a harmonious settlement where we can co exist, live side by side. Imagine all the people living in harmony
B I think it would be profitable to consider giving up a few of our entrenched positions, some of those contentious border areas
A ‘Contentious border areas’? These are not border areas. In most cases they’re well within our territory. These ‘peaceful overtures’, have they compared losses over recent years, in this period of mutual acceptance policy?
B Not really
A Well let me inform you. While you’ve been throwing rocks, we’ve taken heavy casualties. Wake up and smell the gunsmoke soldier this is a war.
B That’s exactly the kind of attitude we would expect. And the kind of attitude that keeps this war going. Have you noticed that all the other factions don’t fight amongst themselves! Yet we’re here trying to fight them all rather than just accepting them.
A You perhaps have forgotten that they are all fighting under the same General.
B Ahhh.. the conspiracy theory, look that rubbish went out the window ages ago.
A And our General?
B He was a good man. And was prepared to accept any position.
A No he didn’t. He was the ultimate diplomat, always prepared to reach the desired outcome by peaceful means wherever possible, but the desired outcome was never compromised, and when it was time to draw the line he drew it with a firm hand.
B Look where that got him
A He undertook the most daring commando raid of all time! He stole the enemies’ secret weapon from under their noses and made overall victory possible for us. In fact certain. To stop fighting now is to undermine the not only his mission, but also many other missions of daring, bravery and sacrifice. There is no place for squeamishness in this battle.
B That’s a nice story. But I don’t want to get sucked into the whole propaganda thing. I’m a thinker. It’s a nice life as a soldier, but not worth fighting for!
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