Posted by Tony on April 10, 2002 at 13:37:01:
In Reply to: By the way Tony posted by Evanthia on April 09, 2002 at 22:10:36:
Evanthia, I'm afraid you're misunderstanding me -- I'm not saying get rid of military service in Greece or even make it voluntary - given the neighbors of Greece, aside form other reason, Greece does need a pool of people trained in at least basic combat. I am also not saying that if needed, Greeks should not defend their country, that would be ridiculous. What i am saying is that the concept of military conscription, as it stands now is not for the purposes you think it is. Have men give two years of their lives to this does not really enhance Greek defence all that much. Conscripts are not well trained and are they because they have to be, their heart usually isn't in military service. A soldier that may believe in their country but not in the system would not make a very good fighter and I'm sure (actually I'm certain) people inthe Greek Ministry of Defense realize this which is why the front lines are composed of careerists. Military service is simply something that has to be done and therefore people do it. As for Greeks not finding death in battle as glorious -- I never said that all Greeks were fatalistic but you'll find that typ eof soldier not only in Greece but in each and every armed force on Earth -- they tend to make the best kinds of warriors. You're point about breaking up national service being an administrative nightmare is well noted, however, should people put their lives on hold because of bureaucratic inconvenience?
: I've never met a Greek that didn't love life and I've never met a Greek that would find dying for any cause glorious. Greeks are pragmatic, so if there was war and there was no other choice but to fight, then they would do so. I have never met a Greek that would deem premature death anything other than a tragedy and believe me, no Greek is convinced that death has any glory in it, only necessity and only in the protection of borders. You may have had the privelege of growing up in a land who has friends for neighbours. I, as many Greeks do, had relatives who before they passed away, told me of living under Turkish rule and that wasn't so long ago.
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