Remembering Nuel Brill

R.I.P., my friend and teacher:

{Nuel Brill is as famous to the Green Beret as Smedley Butler is to Marines.}

When I met Nuel Brill [circa 1985-86] I was impressed.  Nuel was a very self contained (mind of his own damn it!) wiry old codger, and a retired Green Beret Sergeant Major.  The phrase “still hard as nails” fit him real well.

Nuel and I got along right off.  Nuel with his Combat Infantry pin (Vietnam for sure [Korea?]) on his hat, and me a Vietnam era veteran who talked my way out of that War in 1969; at the height of the war.  We both knew the Vietnam War was nothing more than international racketeering [organized murder for profit], foisted on the public.  Nuel loved the truth and actually helped write the US Army’s book on Counter Insurgency.

Ol’ Nuel was a gentleman farmer when I met him.  His farm was on the east side of EE a mile or two north of State route 76 in Douglas County, Missouri, and he once let me hunt deer on the wooded 50 acres he looked after across the road.

When they’d ask Nuel down at the VFW Post, “Nuel, you were in the Army 27 years; why didn’t you just stay in another 3 years and get a full pension?” Nuel’s answer was always the same: “It just wasn’t what I swore an oath to do anymore.”

When the US invaded Afghanistan, October 7th 2001, the other veterans groused at Nuel that this was just another Vietnam; but Nuel tried to reassure them that it was entirely different, different culture, different religion, different terrain and climate etc.  But when, very briefly, the de facto US Propaganda Ministry tried preaching the bullshit about “winning the hearts-n-minds” of Afghanistan’s people, Nuel changed his tune and said, “- it’s just another damn Vietnam.”  Nuel was brutally honest and admitted his mistakes; you’ll never see a career politician do that.  Like Nuel I had sworn an oath to God “to protect, support, uphold and defend the Constitution for the United States of America against all enemies foreign and domestic”; and like Nuel I had believed that had to do with protecting hearth-n-home...  Nuel’s heart was open; he wanted to love everyone.  When the Army told him to “win the hearts-n-minds” of the Vietnamese that became his solemn duty, and being a good Christian he approached the task with religious fervor!

Terrorism: Government by IntimidationThe faith-n-trust of the US Public was betrayed by the Vietnam War; the real agenda of the war had nothing to do with protecting hearth-n-home or “winning the hearts-n-minds”; those were lies.  Asserting “hearts-n-minds” was the agenda in Afghanistan was a huge mistake.  At law assertions stand as a fact unless reasonably disputed; but in US politics, naked assertions are held as facts and opposing viewpoints are deemed the “conspiracy theories” of lunatics, therefore not worthy of consideration at all.  This is tantamount to dictation to reason spoken by tyrants, not rational discussion serving the Public’s special trust in government.  Force of reason is not reason by force.

Nuel was wise; he’d listen, and then think a bit before responding.  Neither Nuel nor I could figure out how to straighten out US politics peaceably, and he had close kin to consider.  I don’t believe in “collateral damage” either, so I wage Peace not war.  Many innocent bystanders are killed/injured in wars of aggression, and it puts their relatives and friends off; “hearts-n-minds” cannot be won by intimidation, had by the force of arms.