Thursday, October 20, 2011

Selective Book Burning (Isn't It Always?) by U.S Soldier

Photo from Soldier's Tumblir Blog
You just never know.  Book burning by American soldiers in a war zone is something I never expected to read about, but it has apparently happened deep in the heart of Afghanistan.  I agree that sending so many copies of the same book to soldiers who would have much preferred to receive "food or soap," instead, was dumb.  I can even sympathize with the claim that the books were burned because they were taking up precious storage space in the camp and had to be destroyed for that reason. has the details and a link to the blog of one of the soldiers involved in the book burning.
It gets awfully cold in the Afghan desert at night, and American troops need to sometimes take desperate measures to stay warm. One smart soldier in Afghanistan has stumbled on a trick, however: Bill O’Reilly’s book makes some damn good kindling.
An US soldier stationed oversees took to his Tumblr blog to tell the Web that donations of Bill O’Reilly’s book “Pinheads and Patriots,” which servicemen received an entire box of, might not be the best gift for the guys and gals involved in American military operations in Afghanistan. I suppose it does make a thoughtful 10-year anniversary gift, though.
My cynicism about why the books were really burned was rewarded when I got to this quote from the unnamed book burner:
 “I won’t say I didn’t take pleasure in removing a few copies of this bigoted twerp’s writings from circulation, but the reason for doing so was military necessity.”
Photo from Soldier's Tumblir Blog
A visit to the soldier's blog confirmed that his political leanings are directly opposed to those of someone like O'Reilly.  No biggie, of course...just a shame that the guy is so hypocritical about his true motivation for burning these particular books.  Man-up, burned the books because you detest their content.  Just tell the truth.  Seeing that you are serving the country in such a dangerous war zone (for which I sincerely thank and applaud you), I would have expected more political courage from you - and a whole lot less whining about the inconvenience this box of books caused you guys.

Best of luck to you all.


  1. I couldn't agree more. He should have been honest about why he was burning the books. But then again, why not leave the books for someone else to read? I just can't see burning books!

  2. I can't see destroying these either. My complaint is that the guy was so two-faced and twisted the truth about why he was in such a hurry to burn the books. My blogging about the whole incident, he made himself look very hypocritical...and the truth is that he IS a hypocrite.