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Editorial

The Letter From a Soldier, printed below, caught me up short and made me reflect on some implications of Gun Control that I had not considered.  I would guess that the majority of the readers of Community ConneXion share my abhorrence of violence and its many instruments.  We would all dearly love to see the planet wiped clean of guns, missiles, bombs and chemical and biological weapons.  One would think that Gun Control is a step in the right direction, but is it possible that it is laying the groundwork for problems of a more sinister nature?

On a recent visit to Israel, I was a bit shocked to find that my tenderly raised daughter had allowed her two boys a plastic arsenal that, if real, would have armed a battalion. Their video games anchored the association between killing and a macho kind of fun.  Permitting such brutalization is, perhaps, more understandable in Israel where it might prepare the youngsters for the political realities of the region.  I am reminded of Golda Meir’s sad comment when she was Prime Minister of Israel.  She said, “I can forgive the Arabs for killing my sons, but I cannot forgive them for turning my sons into killers.”

The relevance of that statement to Gun Control is that it is not the availability or use of guns that turns people into killers, it is the pressures of the society they live in.  Whether it is Palestinian children throwing rocks and Molotov cocktails, young Israeli soldiers shooting rubber and metal bullets or Portland gang members wielding knives and guns – the outcome is still the same: death, pain and a mother’s tears.

It is certainly naļve to assume a causal relationship between the measures described below and the outcome, but it does offer food for thought.

A Letter From A Soldier

The history of gun control
Why we should be afraid:

In 1911, Turkey established gun control.  From 1915 to 1917, 1.5 million Armenians, (unable to defend themselves), were rounded up and exterminated.

In 1928, Germany established gun control.  From 1939 to 1945, 13 million Jews, gypsies, homosexuals, the mentally ill, and others,  (unable to defend themselves), were rounded up and exterminated.  In 1929, the Soviet Union established gun control.  From 1929 to 1953, approximately 20 million dissidents,  (unable to defend themselves), were rounded up and exterminated.

 In 1935, China established gun control.  From 1948 to 1952, 20 million political dissidents,  (unable to defend themselves), were rounded up and exterminated.

 In 1956, Cambodia established gun control.  From 1975 to 1977, one million "educated" people,  (unable to defend themselves), were rounded up and exterminated.

 In 1964, Guatemala established gun control.  From 1964 to 1981, 100,000 Mayan Indians,  (unable to defend themselves), were rounded up and exterminated.

 In 1970, Uganda established gun control.  From 1971 to 1979, 300,000 Christians,  (unable to defend themselves), were rounded up and exterminated.

That places the total of known victims who lost their lives -- BECAUSE THEY WERE UNABLE TO DEFEND THEIR LIBERTY -- at approximately 56 million in the 20th century.  Their governments all said gun control would make them safer, and those victims may have even felt that way right up until they were exterminated.

Respectfully

SFC Garry H. Bleeker

Assistant Inspector General, 1st Armored Division, Task Force Falcon, Camp Bondsteel, Kosovo APO AE 09340, BleekerFG@Bondsteel2.areur.army.mil

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