THE MILITARY’S NEW IMAGE
Last week’s television footage of Iraqi soldiers falling on their knees to kiss the hands of their U.S. Marine captors could be the defining visual of the war in the Persian Gulf. The videotape said it all: Saddam Hussein’s humiliation and the Allies’ triumph, the victors and the vanquished indelibly joined in the grainy immediacy of battlefront journalism. It signified, as few war photos have ever done, qualities of national character that Americans like to think are unique to them: power and restraint, an easy confidence in the rightness of the American cause that is tempered by magnanimity in victory. …for many in the services, Desert Storm assuaged the ugly memory of Vietnam. “The stigma…
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