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With the Old Breed at Peleliu and Okinawa

I choose to read With the Old Breed at Peleliu and Okinawa by E.B. Sledge. While reading this book I was invoked with a wide array of emotions, feelings, and a new outlook of war. This book had many different themes, but the main ones I personally took from it was the inglorious waste war was, the "sanity" training that took place, and the power of propaganda. The three main things I hope you take from this is War is a terrible (pardon my French) cluster fuck, the effects of the fog of war and how the basic sanity training helped mitigate some of the effects of the fog of war, and ways propaganda effects the thoughts, feelings, or actions towards a country or race of people.
I want to start by covering the pre deployment aspect of the book. During this portion you see what I call “Basic sanity training.” Here the reader along with Eugene Sledge in 1942 era Parris Island. This is when we get introduced to the sanity training that takes place in Recruit Training, especially during this era of Recruit Training. It is arguable that some of the things that he talks about would be considered hazing in this day in time, but I would argue that for the war they were fighting/preparing to fight was necessary. This is because if you look back at historical records the Japs were a ferocious fighting force and the Marines needed that basic training to be able to effectively fight and eventually win. Finally, a few examples of the training he experienced was getting hands laid on him and a heinous number of push-ups if they messed up a drill movement or rifle manual, forced death runs, and middle of the night death hikes with limited amounts of sleep. In conclusion, in my opinion the training experienced by each generation of Marines should vary on the war they are fighting.
To introduce my next topic, I'm going to put in two quotes from Sledge.
The Japanese fought to win - it was a savage, brutal, inhumane, exhausting and dirty business. Our commanders knew that if we were to win and survive, we must be trained realistically for it whether we liked it or not. In the post-war years, the U.S. Marine Corps came in for a great deal of undeserved criticism in my opinion, from well-meaning persons who did not comprehend the magnitude of stress and horror that combat can be. The technology that developed the rifle barrel, the machine gun and high explosive shells has turned war into prolonged, subhuman slaughter. Men must be trained realistically if they are to survive it without breaking, mentally and physically.
-E.B. Sledge
Would the war dehumanize me so that I, too, could "field strip" enemy dead with such nonchalance?
-E.B. Sledge
The reason I chose these two quotes it was because the first quote vividly describes the War of the Pacific. I think that it shows the raw nature of war that you couldn't know unless you've been in it. In the second quote Sledge muses to himself at the beginning of Peleliu if he would ever be changed enough to field strip an enemy solider, it is important to note that later on during the war he would try to, but his squad mate Sanfu stops him. In my opinion these two quotes show how much war can transform a person and how the savagery, brutality, and exhausting unnecessary thing. I hope you have a deeper understanding on the idea of war is an inglorious waste of time.
For my final theme, I'm going to talk about the power of propaganda. As we talked about earlier; when Sledge was going through recruit training he was exposed to propaganda against the Japanese military and people to make him and the rest of his platoon hate them and in turn be a more effective fighting force fueled by pure hate and rage. I think is important aspect because propaganda can come in different forms and outlets. But I do think it is important to note that as Marines we need to be more careful with what propaganda we listen to. I say this because we are the nation's force in readiness, so we need a steady stream of propaganda to where we could fight a peer nation, but not to the point where it effects our working side by side against the numerous terrorist cells across the world. With that being said I was astonished by the fact that in just the 4 total months Sledge was in training, 8 weeks at recruit training and another 8 at infantry training, how much anti-Japanese propaganda he was exposed to and what an effective warfighter it made him. In my opinion propaganda is the quickest way to stir up patriotism and a war effort back in the states.
To summarize, in this little essay we talked about the sanity training experienced to prepare Sledge and his squad mates for the fog of war. The inglorious waste war is and how it can change the ones fighting it. Finally, we talked about the power of propaganda. I chose to utilize quotes and the Marine Corps mission to explain some of the points I made, that I don't understand, because I have never been in War. I hope that you have a better understanding on this book, and have been inspired to go read it yourself. Writing papers is a torture for me! Thank God, I've found a necessary articles for rhetorical analysis. It helped me do my own paper.