Brandon Hocking was 24 years old when he died of injures from a roadside bomb attack in southern Iraq. It happened just days after the eighth anniversary of the US-led invasion and occupation and days before he was scheduled to return home.

Death, though tragic, occurs for all. More significant is how one lived.  Hocking lived and died in service to imperialism. He played his role in an aggressive war: a war resulting in over a million Iraqi deaths and the displacement of tens of millions more; one to usurp any independent national sovereignty from the Iraqi people. Hocking traveled over 100,000 kilometers from his home to enforce and maintain US hegemony in the Middle East. Hocking’s death should not be mourned, as his life was spent as an oppressor.

Some will be deeply outraged by these words, yet it is these people who deserve the most scorn. They are the “loved ones” who supported his actions and decisions, and the decadent, militarist society which bore him. And, of course, many who consider themselves ‘left-wing.’

Let’s face it: one either supports US imperialism or opposes it. There is no middle ground on the terrain of global class struggle. I say ‘Fuck the Troops’ (with any number of words and actions) specifically to withdraw my support from US militarism and imperialism which ravages the world’s people and is destroying the planet.

US militarism and imperialism won’t be beat by ‘passive resistance’ and non-violence on the part of oppressed people. Nor will it be seriously challenged from within by ‘supporting the troops,’ even ‘critically’ from so-called opponents.

Brandon Hawking made it clear what side he stood on. So too did the people who planted the bomb which ended his life. Where the First World ‘left’ stands is a far more open question.

Join the conversation! 10 Comments

  1. The troops should be tried for war crimes and then hung. Murdering bastards.

  2. We must make the idea of becoming a soldier, despicable, vile, offensive, dreadful, and uncool, for young people, instead of promoting it as honorable, noble, God-serving, exciting, or cool, which is how the schools, corporations, and media, sell it to our children.

  3. What we need to do is stop coddling the troops and singing their praises to the sky and fillin their heads with this “protecting our country” bullshit. The army is NOT overseas for us. Not by a longshot.

  4. My father fought in WW2. I think we did a good thing in that war. There is no doubt in my mind that the nazi regime and their allies was a true enemy. Hitler was commiting genocide. My father was enlisted in the Navy at the time. I bought him a shirt that proclaimed him to be a navy veteran. He never wore it, although he was proud of his service. However, in his case he had a right to be proud, but he never boasted it. On September 11, 2001 I saw him cry. I had only seen this site twice in my lifetime, once when I almost died and on that day. He was alive to see the United States invade Iraq.

    You would think that a member of the “greatest generation” wouldn’t disagree with his country in a time of war. However, my Dad firmly disagreed. The man who ordered the planes to strike at the twin towers was in Afganistan, but here we go to Iraq with guns blazing. Then came the slap in the face when we saw Bush in front of a backdrop that said “mission accomplished”. Now, years later as the young soldiers and sailors come home we look back at a pointless war, with no W.M.D.’s, Osama Bin Laden finally dead after ten years, and I’m supposed to feel thankful?

    I used to have friends that are veterans of the war in Iraq. Until one day I overheard the two of them talking about how they used to piss in water bottles and watch kids fight for the bottle. They’d laugh as the children discovered the true contents of the container. Then they laughed as they told stories about offering $10 to kids to kick i.e.d.’s to see if they were active. Afterwards they refused to pay the children. These “soldiers” excuses for their actions was that you didn’t know who was the enemy, and that little kids would try to shoot them. They said that these children were “raised to hate Americans”. All these two men did was to validate that hatred as just.

    I read a story about a young man that went to war. His wife cheated on him with a fellow soldier while he was gone. He found out that the child he though was his, wasn’t. Yet there he was fighting this war. Now he’s coming home and he says he wouldn’t change a thing. Why? What good did we do? What did we accomplish? We are in a recession brought about by ten years of war, gas prices are high, and still some say that we need to spend more on our military so that we can protect ourselves from “the enemy”. Meanwhile the rich get richer and recieve tax breaks and bailouts as the middle class and the poor recieve a tax increase. How do they do this? Because they bought off the poloticians and legislation is made with money. Meanwhile I’d like to think that there was a soldier out there that was just following orders, but I can’t think of one time that such reasoning pardoned a Nazi, nor should it pardon any man. To kill for wages, and college funds is to kill for profit. This is not a soldier, it is a mercenery. Keep in mind that I am still speaking of those who are like the two men that I once considered friends.

    So now I look back at all of it and I do indeed see that there was an enemy. The question is, how many of them where there, and how many were on our side of the fence?

    • The real enemy is in red, white, and blue and tries to disguise itself as a Beacon of Liberty and Land of the Free.

      Cut through all the American nationalist propaganda about freedom or democracy, and it’s obvious the United Snakes of America is a rapacious, predatory, and expansitionist empire since it was spawned over 200 years ago.

      American flagwavers and jingoists have a talent for rationalizing and denying the USA’s crimes, but even they will not be able to hide the truth much longer.

      A People’s History of American (Evil) Empire

  5. Thank you so much for this. It feels so isolating to hold these views, especially given most peoples’ visceral reaction to them.

  6. I generally agree with your premise, except most of the troops are too dumb to know any better, lacking the capacity for independent thought

  7. Plenty of soldiers, most of young are very young realize through their war experiences the immorality of their mission and are on the same page as you, just as most people also realize at some point in their lives the same thing, or were you born an anti-imperialist?

    • Of course none of us was born anti-imperialist. Those of us who were unfortunate enough to grow up in the united $nakes of amerikkka were veritably drenched with vile Yankkkee jingoism, chauvinism, and imperialism. Some of us came to hate Amerikkka sooner, others later. But we all came to hate Amerikkka and thirst for its demise.

      A Yankkkee soldier whose experiences convert him to anti-Amerikkkanism may be welcome in our movement or at least in the united front against imperialism. But he must hate Amerikkka because he understands what it is. Merely hating Bush or Obama or whatever is not anti-imperialist.

      It’s a pity that some people have to participate in Yankkkee imperialist warfare themselves before they open their eyes to the nature of U$ imperialism. But such people can still become good anti-imperialists.

  8. Is it Brandon Hocking or Brandon Hawking?


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