Thursday, April 28, 2016

Everyone thinks they are that "One"

Will the real warrior please stand up?

“Out of every hundred men, ten shouldn’t be there, eighty are are just targets, nine are the real fighters, and we are lucky to have them, for they make the battle. Ah, but the one, one is a warrior, and he will bring the others back.” - Heraclitus

I do not wish to try to put my own spin on why this article is relevant. Replace the word "warrior" with the word "leader" and you will see how applicable it is today as it was in two and a half millenia ago.


B-4 said...

Mostly Agree with what was said but every person in the Military wrote the same check. That said some warriors are not, do to lack of drive, training, leadership. Watch "The Hornets Nest" all real combat footage with embedded ABC reporter Mike Boettcher, and his son, Carlos.

Anonymous said...

A friend once described a video seen in basic training of a rifle platoon simultaneously firing all their weapons at their maximum rate: another variation of the "Mad Minute".

He related later seeing something else in the field that would be familiar to Heraclitus: a certain percentage of the GI's trying to crawl into their helmets, another percentage trying to dig their fire pits deeper, perhaps 10% firing their weapons in the general direction of the enemy, and a select few calmly selecting targets and taking them down.

I have been told that today's army is different. One would certainly hope so.

Anonymous said...

I don't consider myself a leader outside of my sphere of responsibility, my family.
If there is a situation going on, and no one else has stepped up to the plate, I will. Until the situation is done. Then I walk away.
Does that make me a leader? I don't feel like one.

B Woodman

Anonymous said...

Obama To Make Push For Smart Guns Again…

Chiu ChunLing said...

This article misses the entire point.

The "warrior" leads, but not because of rank or skill or invulnerability. The warrior leads because he lays down his own life for everyone else. Not just for this or that person, but for all of them, and they know that and follow him because of it. And while I've mentioned before that putting your life on the line doesn't always mean you lose's not like it never happens.

Heraclitus' warrior may gravitate towards combat arms, but can be found in any position where one man's willingness to expose himself to danger may save an entire unit. The warrior may survive, but he also might be the one cut down first by the machine guns or artillery barrage or whatever other danger, what matters is that his action of risking his own life (whether or not he lost it) enables the entire force to maintain cohesion and accomplish their mission, even if that mission is only retreat. The point about distance doesn't deserve to be discussed, as the potential of modern arms already rendered it irrelevant.

But I will say this, the warrior isn't a lone individual anymore than an army is just a hundred men. An army of 10,000 has a hundred such men, and they each do their duty to the whole, often in cooperation with each other. The inability to grasp this principle reveals a shallow thought process.

The author is right that his mistaken conception of what Heraclitus describes never existed, certainly not in the Greek pattern of war that Heraclitus knew.

That real warrior doesn't stand up and command others to follow, but sees the crucial moment where the sacrifice of his own safety and comfort can magnify the chances of survival or victory for everyone around him.

I have no interest in being one such, I'm more than content to be a fighter, for they make the battle, whether or not anyone is glad of it. It's even enough to be a target, and save one other life, possibly a fighter, by taking the hit ourselves. But we're grateful to the warrior, the man who makes war something more than a savage contest of bloodshed through his sacrifice at a key moment.

Those who aren't grateful...are the ones that don't belong there at all.

Anonymous said...

Chiu, well spoken and spot on, 99 percent of the reason i have derision for militias. Id bet those percentages are even lower in them. A warrior doesnt throw his life away foolishly where courage outweighs valor and intelligence and common sense are the primary tools they use, the actual weapons, about 2 percent of the time after judicious use of common sense and tactical thinking.

Sign me, Neal Jensen

Chris said...

The idea of a "warrior" as cannon fodder is inaccurate at best. Selflessness does not mean needless sacrifice and courage does not equal stupidity.