What does that rude term signify? It does not imply complaint about the inevitable inconveniences of military life: overcrowding and lack of privacy, tedious institutional cookery, deprivation of personality, general boredom. Nothing much can be done about those things. Chickenshit refers rather to behavior that makes military life worse than it need be: petty harassment of the weak by the strong; open scrimmage for power and authority and prestige; sadism thinly disguised as necessary discipline; a constant "paying off of old scores"; and insistence on the letter rather than the spirit of ordinances. Chickenshit is so-called -- instead of horse- or bull- or elephant shit -- because it is small-minded and ignoble and takes the trivial seriously. Chickenshit can be recognized instantly because it never has anything to do with winning the war.Today in Taipei thousands protested a young recruit killed by chickenshit. The Taipei Times reported:
Shouting slogans and holding placards bearing messages such as: “Give justice to the victim’s family,” “Ensure human rights in the military” and “Without the truth, there is no forgiveness,” the protesters also called for the inclusion of an independent third party in the investigation into Hung’s death.The Taipei Times estimated 30,000 showed up, while the police said 15K. The case has made international news. Several officers are facing charges, but really, what killed recruit Hung was chickenshit.
Hung died on July 4, following punishing exercises he had been forced to do as part of his punishment while being confined to detention barracks.
In making the appeal, dozens of young male protesters sang military songs with revised lyrics criticizing the army officers thought to have been involved in Hung’s death, while others made a show of drinking bottled water — a reference to reports that Hung’s superiors allegedly refused to give him water despite repeated requests.
My son will likely go into the local military this year. I hope these protesters can create change.....
REF: In 2010 a recruit committed suicide after being similarly tormented by an officer. Here's a 1990s piece... things CAN change.
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