You could have heard a pin drop.

Tez3

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I think Bobs post does prove that people are grateful for the sacrifices of young lives given by America, I don't think thats ever in doubt but it's a quiet thing, held in the hearts of people who show their appreciation in many ways such as that shown above.

However it is very crass that some expect people to gush and fawn over America as the saviour of the world and constantly want us to go on our knees and say thank you, thank you all the time.

The gratitude is there, don't ever doubt it but don't cheapen it or poison it by trying to rub our noses in it with phrases like 'oh if it wasn't for us you'd be speaking German now' and 'we saved your butts'. We were and are Allies, it doesn't behove anyone to claim they did more than another, gave more or suffered more. It's not a pissing contest, it was a dark and desparate hour in mankinds history, so much suffering, death and destruction so more than a little dignity is called for when remembering this time.
 

Kembudo-Kai Kempoka

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The Americans did help for sure. But they were comfortable enough pretending there was no war until they were attacked themselves. Even then, they only got involved in Europe because Japan and Germany had linked their fates with a pact.

If we have anyone to thank, it's the Russians who sacrificed millions, fighting their way from moscow to Berlin.
While the Americans did speed up the process of ending the war, it was already turning in favor of the allied forces by the time they arrived.

The US did make a significant difference in the timeframe, but let's not oversimplify things to the point where your message is just propaganda.
There are just as many black pages in the US history as in ours, and pretty much anyone elses.

American arrogance has us as the greatest contributors to the defeat of Nazi Germany, and the reluctant hero's who bore the greatest brunt of the war. I lived in Bruxelles for a bit as a student, and had the pleasure and privilege of travelling around the continent quite a bit on holiday.

I wish so many of the dumb hicks I share a country with could have seen what happens to the consciousness of a people when the tumults of war have devastated their own backyard. When food was so scarce, stews were made from grass and old leather...for months on end. When elder sisters would sell their bodies to US G.I.'s for rations, so they could feed their younger siblings...parents having been executed by the Nazi's. (which side should they thank? The Germans who shot their parents in the head, or the Americans who baited them with sustenance to act like whores?).

I wish my hick compatriots who think Europeans should grovel in thanks could see the shrines made out of things like tanks that ran out of gas. A tank breaks down in a march through the countryside. The locals, so happy that help has come, keep it freshly painted and covered in flowers to this day. And you want to accuse them of being ingrateful? Get out more, and grow up.

I wish my hick compatriots that insist Europeans suck up all pride for the rest of their lives could meet and lunch with the Europeans who had to try to rebuild a continent after the liberation. We bombed parts of Germany into the dark ages. I knew a Dutch woman who, after seeing the Germans kill her parents, her sister, her nieces and nephews; had been raped and beaten and broken by the occupying forces; and after having been in the resistance where members killed each other on suspicion alone, joined a humanitarian brigade that ran trains into Germany to fetch German children starving in the streets, schlep them to better grounds to feed them and nurse them back to some semblence of help, then return them to the streets of rubble with some supplies and collect the next round of starving oprhans. No Americans to be seen; Europeans, helping other Europeans...the ones who had been terrorizing them for the last decade of war.

WW2 did not hit our shores in anything resembling a destructive wave. We rationed meat, while they had none. 1-in-3 Russians were killed in the war, making it really hard to find a Russian citizen who was not directly affected by loss.

I was private security for a woman who was in the Dutch underground, and one of the caretakers for Anne Franks family, mentioned in the Diary. After Schindlers list came out, she was invited to speak at a UC Irvine event. A panle of speakers was aksed to tell their stories: A young medical student, placed in the concentration camps & made to conduct amputations with a piece of wire and no drugs...an American tank driver, first in the gates at Buchenwald...the families of people whose names were on the list. And outside, a parade of American neo-fascists, insisting it never happened, protesting loudly on the sidewalk outside the hall, while inside the old tank driver broke down in tears, describing trying to save the prisoners, only to accidentally kill them with single bites of food and small sips of water bursting their stomachs...where you could have heard a pin drop, for real.

I love my country, what it stands for. I've bled for it, and would again. But I can't stand the abhorrent ignorance that governs the minds of so many Americans. And while we had the exhorbitant largesse of the 1980's putting yuppies in large houses and convertibles, countries like Britain and Belgium saw a huge working class struggling just to break even in a heavily taxed economies, old pairs of trousers with sewn holes, and Ireland looking like a 3rd world country. I recall clearly sitting on the plane next to a young Irish man, beaming with pride that he had just recieved his European passport, and that now he was a citizen of Europe. And how the changes on the horizon would mean his kids would have a better chance than he did, having grown up in a poverty-filled Dublin. And they do; Ireland looks now more like American University towns did back then, and I'm glad for them.

Sorry for the rant...something about it all just gets in my craw. Price paid; move on, and be grateful you didn't have to come up from under the burdens they did.
 

crushing

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However it is very crass that some expect people to gush and fawn over America as the saviour of the world and constantly want us to go on our knees and say thank you, thank you all the time.

Where do you see that expectation all the time?

I've seen the "you'd be speaking German" comments in a couple flag waving chain emails, or as a counter or defense to some attack on something some "patriot" making the comment holds dear in an online forum, but other than that???????
 

Kembudo-Kai Kempoka

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Where do you see that expectation all the time?

I've seen the "you'd be speaking German" comments in a couple flag waving chain emails, or as a counter or defense to some attack on something some "patriot" making the comment holds dear in an online forum, but other than that???????

I'll bite. Ever hear the term, "ugly American?" Where there is smoke, there is fire. American tourists stand out among a crowd, and can be heard making small-minded comments in the Metro, in the squares, the malls, on the rail, in hotel lobbies. I had a friend I was pissed at for saying he was Canadian, instead of American, as a way to explain his accent without having to admit being a U.S. citizen.

Then, after living in Bruxelles and Luxembourg, I kinda got it. Instead of denying my US origin, I would just say, "We aren't all like that".

I was there during the presidency of Bush the First, while bits of the Berlin Wall and tons of fake wall were being sold on streetcorners. If there was a "crass idiot" comment to be heard in the crowd, chances were better than 3/4 it was an American.
 

Kembudo-Kai Kempoka

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On a side note, regarding my own personal disdain for the French.
The stories I've heard from several veterans, was that when the US forces were leaving France at the wars end, the French would line the streets and make obscene gestures, and tell them to "get out". So grateful were they that American's shed their blood to save their country when they themselves couldn't, that they would shower the trains with rocks in joy. So, to me, while the US can say thank you to the French for loaning us some money, and selling us some guns back in our infancy, we have more than repaid that debt, with high interest by our own sacrifices in recovering and restoring their own country to them. It also I am sure chaffs them terribly to owe the British the same debt for saving their collective asses, though they seem to forget that often I hear.

My own personal disdain for the French came from reviewing joint field operations with them in NATO drills...you know; the alliance that the French snubbed when they thought they were strong enough, switched to OTAN, but expect to come to their aid if the dooky ever hits the rotary cooling device again?

I have to say...the families in the French countryside were delightful folk; that seemed to be a universal thing, wherever I went. The Parisians, on the other hand...a Canadian Colonel we were hanging with frequently used the phrase in Paris, "France is too beautiful for the French." Usually after a Parisian went out of their way to snub us, or express their disdain for us English speaking foriegners.

But, to be fair, have you ever seen the way Southern California locals treat foreigners who struggle with English?
 

Xue Sheng

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A woman I once worked with was from Norway and she spoke more languages than I ever thought possible for one human (however she just did not speak the language of her in-laws :D ) She traveled all over Europe the US and Canada and she did not have any thing bad to say about anyone but she refused to comment on Parisians. She had been to Paris and she loved the French countryside and thought French Canadian were great people but would not comment on Parisians.

And my only comment on WW II and the French tends to always be about the success of the Maginot Line, I could say more but why bother.

Listen people it was a long time ago and likely none of use were there fighting. I had a few uncles there one was at D-Day and was injured after he got off the beach, one in the Pacific and I have never heard any of them say anything against any of their allies or say anyone in Europe owed them a thing.

Frankly there was good a bad done by all and from my study of the history of it there are a few I am not all to happy with but at this point since it appears that everyone else on the planet is looking to fight see the middle east, Korea and a few others, I hate to sound clich矇 here but can't we all just get along.

As for idiotic, rude nasty comments made by American's abroad well they are idiots but I have head people form other countries make a few rude, nasty, idiotic comments here in the US too and some of them have become citizens others were tourists. Does that mean everyone there is a Jerk.... no.... just the ones I heard.

And you want to stand out like a sore thumb be you from Britain, USA or Europe go to China and pick a city go where tourist don't.
 

Sukerkin

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Sadly, at the moment it looks like we are entering a period where, more than usual, we (humanity) cannot seem to get along. I wish it were otherwise but that wish is not fated to be answered anytime soon I'm sorry to say.

I just wanted to thank Kempoka openly for the veracity of his words in those posts earlier. I know that many of our members here won't want to acknowledge them as being true and that some think we (British especially) are not being fair in some things that we say or hint at when we speak of those times.

However, it was, not gratifying exactly but certainly a relief to hear that there are those who understand somewhat how the gulf of difference in experience has marked the generations (and their descendants) that saw that war as widely as the Atlantic physically seperates the continents.
 
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mook jong man

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The French aren't exactly popular down here in Australia and New Zealand either .
Because they kept on doing nuclear testing on Mururoa Atoll , and not only that they sent some of their secret agents to blow up the Green Peace protest ship " The Rainbow Warrior ".
 

Tez3

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Where do you see that expectation all the time?

I've seen the "you'd be speaking German" comments in a couple flag waving chain emails, or as a counter or defense to some attack on something some "patriot" making the comment holds dear in an online forum, but other than that???????

I've seen it on several posts on this forum.
 

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I wish so many of the dumb hicks I share a country with could have seen what happens to the consciousness of a people when the tumults of war have devastated their own backyard. When food was so scarce, stews were made from grass and old leather...for months on end. When elder sisters would sell their bodies to US G.I.'s for rations, so they could feed their younger siblings...parents having been executed by the Nazi's. (which side should they thank? The Germans who shot their parents in the head, or the Americans who baited them with sustenance to act like whores?).

My grandmother was born in WW1 and raised / managed a large family through WW2 while my grandfather was first fighting, and then imprisoned in a POW camp. Her side of the family was wealthy (not just well off).

2 houses further down the road, people were eating grass, because they had nothing left. So my grandmother started sharing what she had. Many people were fed for free by the produce of her orchards and fields. She took people in as well, and did what she could without resentement. At the end of the war, all they had left were the house and the land.

I used to ask her about the war, and she'd tell things about the daily life, not about the ugliness, when I was a kid. She died last week, at age 95. Her funeral was packed, because she knew everyone and everyone knew her.

How is this relevant to the argument?
Europeans, Nato, the EU, etc are often ridiculed for their endless talking and diplomatic efforts, even against all odds. But the thing is: for most of us, the war is not a vague concept. It's not something that happened far enough in the past that we can glorify it. We don't think of war as something where you go to, kill someone and then come back home as a 'hero'. We don't think war is a solution. Even today, there are many people alive who lived through the war (my kids day care parents for example) or who (like me) know people (my grandparents)who did.

We -know- the impact and consequences of land war, and we will do anything to prevent it. We still have a living memory of the war.

Even today, Flanders is littered with WW2 bunkers. They are not torn down. They are maintained. I know several bridges where the guard bunker is cared for, and where a new bridge was built alongside to increase capacity without having to tear down the bunker.
The trenches in Ieper where so many died are maintained to keep them stable and strong. Even some of the death camps are still kept standing.
We do those things as a remembrance to those who died, as a reminder of the horrors, and as a motivation for doing everything in our power to prevent it from happening again.

While it is pointless to raise my blood pressure over what people say on the internet (and I tend not to let it do that) comment like those which started this thread make me angry because they are an insult to the people like my grandparents who lived through it, who knew the horror, and who gave everything they had, fighting and caring.
 

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I love my country, what it stands for. I've bled for it, and would again. But I can't stand the abhorrent ignorance that governs the minds of so many Americans. And while we had the exhorbitant largesse of the 1980's putting yuppies in large houses and convertibles, countries like Britain and Belgium saw a huge working class struggling just to break even in a heavily taxed economies, old pairs of trousers with sewn holes, and Ireland looking like a 3rd world country. I recall clearly sitting on the plane quote]
I grew up in working class Northern England in the '80s. The person I call father didn't arrive in our lives until '86. We did'nt resent American wealth though. As kids, America gave us hope for the future. We all wanted to be in the US, in California, riding in the van with the A-Team.

The first Americans I met were LDS missionaries. It was in '84. They gave me my first 'Twinkie' and showed me how to throw a football. Some of the kids cried when they left.

I moved to Ireland in '94 to further my Kenpo studies. There were plenty of Americans there. Students, tourists, and new citizens trying to find their roots. I never heard any example of American arrogance and the locals treated them like brothers.

All in all, speaking for myself as a Brit, America and Americans have been good to me and I appreciate it.
 

crushing

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I've seen it on several posts on this forum.

Yes, exactly! Thank you. This forum has been up for years and has how many thousands of posts? I'm not saying it doesn't happen, I just don't think it happens, as you said, "all the time."

Kembudo-Kai Kempoka said:
Ever hear the term, "ugly American?" Where there is smoke, there is fire.

Yes, of course, and unfortunately I've heard unflattering and insulting advectives used with various other nationalities as well.
 

Xue Sheng

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I've seen it on several posts on this forum.

You know... I wrote a rather sarcastic response to the above post and then I went on a bit of a tirade (A1 top of the line Xue Sheng Rant), to all not just tez, about this entire thread. But after writing it and then rereading it my first thought was why waste my time, no one will listen and they will just go on arguing anyway and just try and include me in the argument.... I'd just be fanning the flames

So I deleted the entire thing.

Enjoy tilting at windmills all, I'm done and out of this entire thread
 

just2kicku

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I think that all this happened a long time ago. It was horrible, war always is.

I've talked to my grandfather who said they would damn near crap their pants when the kamikazes would come in. My great uncle who, besides a buddy, was the only two survivors out of their company in the European theater. My grandfather in Hawaii who was a civil service worker at Pearl, and saw the Japanese pass three times before unloading. While he ran up to a roof top to man a gun.

People came together to fight a common enemy between them, and were successful.

I, myself was on a fast attack submarine, the first nuke boat to pull into Japan since WWII. We got protested, I don't hate any of them.

I think all this talk about who did what for who, should be water under the bridge. Everyone worked together and came out on top. Period.

I have my own views on things. I've seen the arrogance on the part of Americans, Brits, French.
Whatever, I'm proud of my country, I'm sure just as they are.

The point is, move on. It was bad, learn from it, don't forget it, but don't dwell on it either.
There's gonna be *** wipes no matter where you go.
 

Tez3

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Yes, exactly! Thank you. This forum has been up for years and has how many thousands of posts? I'm not saying it doesn't happen, I just don't think it happens, as you said, "all the time."



Yes, of course, and unfortunately I've heard unflattering and insulting advectives used with various other nationalities as well.

I see that you read what I said the wrong way and you are interpretating the way you see it so I'm not going to bore everyone with long explanations. You believe what you want about how I feel or say things and I'll know what I feel and say things so we'll both be happy.
 

kidswarrior

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I've talked to my grandfather who said they would damn near crap their pants when the kamikazes would come in.
Interesting side jaunt on this. When I was in Japan in '74, a couple buddies and I were on a train way out beyond nowhere (no Americans in sight and to make it more obvious, we were in uniform). Out of the blue, this middle aged guy standing next to me says, I was a kamakaze pilot in the War. :eek: I didn't know whether to swing or dive under the seat. Before I could decide, he continued, I was 17 years old, but before they could send me out the war ended. We then had a nice chat -- in English. Taught me something about how much I didn't know about the experience of others.

I, myself was on a fast attack submarine, the first nuke boat to pull into Japan since WWII.
Thanks for your service. :asian:
 

crushing

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I see that you read what I said the wrong way and you are interpretating the way you see it so I'm not going to bore everyone with long explanations. You believe what you want about how I feel or say things and I'll know what I feel and say things so we'll both be happy.

I appreciate you taking your time to reply to me. I don't want to simply believe what I want about how you feel about those 'several posts'. That is too easy. I would rather gain understanding.
 

Tez3

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I appreciate you taking your time to reply to me. I don't want to simply believe what I want about how you feel about those 'several posts'. That is too easy. I would rather gain understanding.

That post was made in a hurry at half five in the morning before I went to work, as I work 12 hours 7-1900, there tends to be many posts added before I can ad more or explain.
As it is it's 7 in the morning now and I'm coming off night shift lol so this may not be too coherent!

Okay this is what I said.

However it is very crass that some expect people to gush and fawn over America as the saviour of the world and constantly want us to go on our knees and say thank you, thank you all the time.

Whether you choose to believe it or not there are some who state that everyone else should be grateful to America but as I said it's only some. My quick post said I've seen it on here and I, in fact got into trouble on here when I first joined for arguing back against a particularly strongly worded post that stated the very thing I am talking about. There have been other occasions too, if you have the time, sadly I don't, go through all my posts to find them.
I didn't say it was most people or even many, just some and it's true. It doesn't take away the goodness of other Americans, it just means you have some idiots as we do, ours, however are mostly in govenment.
It wasn't an insult it was an observation based on things not on here but from reading what people say, read some of the comments on here.
http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/world/asia/article3412490.ece

http://www.abovetopsecret.com/forum/thread458332/pg1

http://languagelog.ldc.upenn.edu/nll/?p=1034

this one says if if wasn't for the Americans we'd be speaking German and a few other choice insults to boot
http://mail.sarai.net/pipermail/reader-list/2004-October/004425.html

There's loads more stuff out there in the same vein. After 9/11 and war was in the offing many peace campaigners protested about Britain getting ivolved, there were letter to the British press from Americans which all said the same thing, oh you should be grateful to us etc etc... and you must join in the war, well we did anyway but not for those reasons.

The OP is made up of anecdotal stories which were unnecessary, as have been demonstrated by other posts on here, America's contributions and sacrifices hasn't been forgotten nor will they be.
Now I'm off to bed, good morning!
 

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