Friday, November 18, 2011

Else We Would Love It Too Much

I'd like to you watch the first minute of this video. I can't embed it, it's probably protected by the Stones' record label.

Because as I was hunting for Stones videos I came across this and ended up watching the first minute probably half a dozen times. I couldn't look away.

The camera sails weightlessly along above the lush green of Vietnam. And the blooms of the ordnance - it's napalm, or napalm mixed with white phosphorus - are like perfect fire flowers that rise from the ground in gorgeous, deadly incandescense to the pounding soundtrack of "Paint It Black"."It is well that war is so terrible," said Bobby Lee, "...else we would grow to love it too much." Watch the first minute of this thing and you can understand why people - let's be honest; men - throughout all human time have fallen in love with war. Because in its way it really is incredibly beautiful.

But at the same time it's fucking horrible.

Watch it again. The part of Vietnam we're seeing isn't a factory, or a bridge, or a road. It's not a military base. There don't appear to be troops below the aircraft or within the rain of fire. I think the string of crappy little village shacks are...a string of crappy little village shacks.

And the fast-mover is blowing the shit out of them, apparently at random.

There's no pattern to this I can see. There's no visible "targets"; the aircraft isn't dropping its ordnance on a specific point, or a visible enemy.

It seems to be doing just what it looks like: flying along at 200 feet AGL just bombing the living hell out of random shacks and everything inside them..And I can't imagine how ANY sane human being could love that too much,

or some,

or a tiny bit,

or at all.

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