The US Marines are banning the wearing of large tattoos, saying they do not represent "traditional values".
From Sunday, tattoos on the head or neck, or large tattoos on arms or legs will not be allowed. Marines already with the tattoos are exempt.
I found two things rather amusing here. Firstly, the fact that marines who already have tattoos are exempt. I am quite sure they could have worked that out for themselves without having it laid down in the rule book for them.
Secondly, the fact that the reason for the banning of tattoos was because they do not represent "traditional values".
Surely the use of cluster bombs in Afghanistan don't represent "traditional values" either. In fact, it is illegal to use these in warfare as they are deemed too inaccurate and can easily kill innocent women and children, but America uses them anyway.
I'm also of the opinion that illegal invasions of countries on some trumped up assumption they have "weapons of mass destruction" doesn't quite conform to "traditional values" much either. As is the case with Iraq. This too was an illegal invasion, but to hell with "traditional values", let's do it anyway....... they have lots of oil.
"Traditional values" would lead them to help out people who are starving to death in their millions while food aid and medical aid was being stolen from them. But alas, Darfur has no oil or gold, so they are left to stand up for themselves as they are slaughtered by their own government.
Tradition will tell us that every time the USA invades a country for whatever reason, they do have a nasty habit of getting their asses kicked. Korea, Vietnam, Iraq, Afghanistan etc etc.
The problem with all this invasion stuff is simple. They keep picking on countries who have a lot of tradition and who will not stand for being bullied. Afghanistan being the best example here.
Anyone who has ever tried to subdue the people of Afghanistan has failed and suffered huge losses in the attempt. These people have horses and few rusty old AK-47 assault rifles and they have seen off the Mujahadeen, the Russians and now they are in the process of seeing of the good ol' US of A.
It's not about tattoos. It's about having traditions and values that mean something. It's about having history and an unnerving desire to defend that history and the memory of the people who made it. It's about having balls big enough to fill a dumper truck.
I would warn against tackling Afghanistan to anyone. They don't have stealth bombers and the latest guns. They have no fancy Hummers to drive across the desert with. They are lacking any form of aerial threat. Helicopters, long range missiles, night vision, laser sights, nuclear bombs are all out of reach for them. But who needs them when you have commitment, incredible bravery and "traditional values" which we may deem right or wrong, that you will defend to the death, even against a far superior enemy?
Still............the tattoos is a start for the USA.