Culture

Why Calling Chris Kyle a Coward Was the Lesser of Michael Moore’s Twitter Sins

BowlingforFallujah

The week, when Hanoi Jane gave her strongest apology yet for her infamous expressions of collaboration with the enemy during the Vietnam War, was also the week in which Fallujah Mike doubled down on his.

In his little-noticed follow-up to his well-covered “snipers were cowards” tweets, Michael Moore painted the Saddam loyalists and al-Qaeda-affiliated terrorists as the heroes — and U.S. forces as the invading marauders.

Cable news, talk radio, the blogosphere and the Twitterverse have adequately covered Michael Moore’s tweet calling snipers “cowards”:

My uncle killed by sniper in WW2. We were taught snipers were cowards. Will shoot u in the back. Snipers aren’t heroes. And invaders r worse

Despite Moore’s hilarious disclaimer that he did not mean Chris Kyle and the requisite implication that it was just a coincidence of timing that he tweeted this out on American Sniper’s opening weekend, he has received the blowback he deserves. (By the way, is no one going to ask Michael Moore if his uncle braced every German soldier he encountered face to face like in a B-western, or gave them all a chance to surrender?)

Chris Kyle—deservedly—is America’s hero of the moment, and jumping on his bandwagon is an easy way to get airtime and demonstrate one’s rhetorical prowess.

But the “coward” tweet was not by any means the worst thing Moore said that day. He also called Chris Kyle a man who murdered good neighbors who were protecting each other, and every American serviceman a marauding invader:

But if you’re on the roof of your home defending it from invaders who’ve come 7K miles, you are not a sniper, u are brave, u are a neighbor.

The response? Crickets.

The lack of attention to his follow-up tweet is a mystery to me. Is defending our troops too difficult? Does it feel to commentators like they will have to defend the whole Iraq war all over again if they go there?

This is not a hard argument to have. If you think that personalizing this issue to the person of Chris Kyle gets you more internet hits or viewers, just frame it as I did above.

Or maybe just point out that last week, those “good neighbors” executed a batch of little kids for watching a soccer game on television.

If you doubt that Michael Moore has always been on the side of the people Chris Kyle rightly called “f**cking savages,” here is one of his website postings from April of 2004:

The Iraqis who have risen up against the occupation are not “insurgents” or “terrorists” or “The Enemy.” They are the REVOLUTION, the Minutemen, and their numbers will grow — and they will win….I oppose the U.N. or anyone else risking the lives of their citizens to extract us from our debacle…the majority of Americans supported this war once it began and, sadly, that majority must now sacrifice their children until enough blood has been let that maybe — just maybe — God and the Iraqi people will forgive us in the end.

Like that guy using the power drill on a child’s head? The farmers who marched on Lexington and Concord in the cause of liberty would certainly have welcomed him into their ranks.

But Michael Moore and Jane Fonda are only the most clumsy of those who root for the defeat of U.S. forces.  When Harry Reid, with the regularity of Baghdad Bob, declares the defeat of American efforts no matter the news of the day (and especially after the success of the surge), that’s a deliberate effort to undermine the war effort.

And the commander-in-chief who later claimed victory and went home, leaving the country to ISIS, has been doing the same thing.

When Ron Paul claims we are meddling in the civil war of another country or invading a “sovereign nation,” the biggest difference between that and Michael Moore is he doesn’t go as far in his praise of the f**king savages.

But maybe that’s what commentators on the right, who see an opportunity to rile up patriotic Americans with the low-hanging fruit of pitting the singularly un-appetizing Michael Moore vs. a guy played by Bradley Cooper in a movie, are afraid the debate will expand to—a war they don’t want to fight anymore.

Ironically, however, protecting Chris Kyle’s reputation without protecting the reputations of our troops in general is the exact opposite of the legacy of Chris Kyle.

Here is how Chris Kyle reacted to the notion of personal fame, notoriety and being labeled Number One:

The number is not important to me. I only wish I had killed more. Not for bragging rights, [emphasis mine] but because I believe the world is a better place without savages out there taking American lives. Everyone I shot in Iraq was trying to harm Americans or Iraqis loyal to the new government. I had a job to do as a SEAL. I killed the enemy — an enemy I saw day in and day out plotting to kill my fellow Americans. I’m haunted by the enemy’s successes. They were few, but even a single American life is one too many lost.

The outpouring of support for American Sniper shows that even in death, Chris Kyle can take care of himself.  By all means, come to his defense, but make room on the bandwagon for the other soldiers he dedicated his career—and his life—to defending.