In light of our recent discussions on another thread, I thought it might be helpful to offer this short description of the various branches in the U.S. military and their wartime roles.
Coast Guard. Bravely defends the U.S. coastline by stopping and searching boatloads of bikini-clad women off the Florida keys. Gripes about their difficult conditions while swilling cheap beer in a Miami bar.
Navy. A fighting force with no interest in bikini-clad women (rumor has it), the U.S. Navy readies itself for battle at sea against its rival’s flotillas. Did somebody say anachronism? Complains about its difficult environment on the way to the on-board movie theater after a freshly prepared dinner.
Air Force. Lives in dangerous conditions just a few hundred miles from the front, in trailers with forced-air heating and cooling, and indoor plumbing. Its 24-hour mess hall serves grilled steaks. Flyboys commisserate on their rough lot with the RAF while drinking wine and beer beside a pool, listening to the sound of a live jazz band. (I actually witnessed this.)
Army. Grunts are the backbone of the U.S. military. They live on the front or just behind it, and are lulled to sleep by the sounds of artillery and tanks. They eat T-rats and hot coffee, live in canvas tents, and occassionally shower. They do complain about the conditions, but are grateful that they were smart enough not to join the Marines.
Marines. This is a burrowing animal. It lives in holes on the front, surviving on cold MRE’s. It would not know how to use plumbing if it had it. Ironically, these living conditions appear to be the same both in war or during peaceful times. The Marines are well summed up by their motto, “Semper Fi,” which is Latin for “I listen to country music.”