Last night I watched the top 50 watched clips from YouTube. And I have to say – people are a sad sad bunch!

Some clips were very funny or very moving (about three or four) and the rest were such complete crap I can’t grasp why they exist at all, never mind as popular viewing! But I digress.


There was one which was rather interesting in its effect on the two of us.


The clip was a pro soldier one for American soldiers. It showed a montage of photos of soldiers with family titles inserted. So a pic of a man was classified as ‘father’, one of a woman as ‘wife’ etc. Every relationship was covered, from best friend to grandchild. You know the type of thing; all tear jerking and soft focus against the backdrop of fear and life threatening activity, emotional music in the background and the obligatory pic of a soldier holding a baby.


Towards the end of the clip, the words ‘Are you proud?’ came up on the screen. Spiral and I both said no, not at all. In fact, we are appalled that war happens at all and that everyone is so affected. Apparently that was the wrong answer. The clip was glorifying what these soldiers were doing, not questioning it or even commenting on it.


I understand that in America the tide is very much against the war and, like after Vietnam, the soldiers are not coming home to a hero’s welcome. This must be very hard for the individuals who went off to war as commanded by their country. But the idea of glorifying what they are doing bothers me.


They are not heroes. They may be brothers and mothers and neighbours but that is exactly who they are killing too. I do not ‘blame’ them, they are doing what soldiers do, but I refuse to be proud of them.


How can we ever even want to glorify war, regardless of whose side we are on?


I find it horrifying that not only does this kind of clip exist but that it is in the top 50 most watched list from YouTube.


Has the past taught us nothing?