to Aboriginal Australia than any liberalrncant? To these inquiries the answer ofrnthe High Court—not to mention Mr.rnKeating, the Labor Party, the churches,rnthe universities, the teacher unions, andrnthe press gallerv—is changeless; you arernliving on borrowed time and stolen property;rnthe latter is de facto, and mightrnwell soon be de jure, up for grabs; wheneverrnyou aim to offer us any effectivernresistance, we shall simply invoke internationalrnlaw against you; and if the resultantrndespoliation of what was oncernamong the West’s most peaceful societiesrnmakes you want to shut your eyesrnand think of Somalia, that just demonstratesrnwhat a loathsome fascist you are.rnNever mind. To distract us from thesernand other disagreeable musings, we atrnleast can now claim our indigenous varietyrnof bread and circuses. Why not attendrnthe Sydney 2000 Olympics, wherernthe circuses will be inescapable, andrnwhere most of the bread will go towardrnmaking Australia’s largest metropolis thernbest thing to happen to druggies sincernWoodstock? Honestly, with all those degeneratesrnchasing one another, you’ll feelrnright at home.rnR./. Stove writes from Sydney.rnLetter From thernMarine Corpsrnby Christopher CheckrnPersonal Moral ValuesrnMarines are a direct lot, not much givenrnto subtlety. Their simple nature enablesrnthem to spot a ruse from the 500-meterrnline, and, on the issue of sodomites, theyrnhave quickly identified as nonsense Mr.rnClinton’s doublespeak about “status”rnand “conduct.” Marines, well known forrnadvertising their “status” by their “conduct,”rnknow that the two are by nornmeans separable. Still, it is not Mr. Clinton’srnequivocation that upsets them.rnThe}- expect as much from a man manyrnview as a liar, a dope-smoker, and a draftdodger.rnWhat disappoints the men ofrnthe Corps is their betrayal by the seniorrnofficers of the Armed Forces who arc attemptingrnto pacify the legions while satisfyingrntheir Commander-in-Chief.rnKnowing in their hearts that ultimatelyrnthey cannot do both, the rankingrnofficers in Washington have madernit clear that they have chosen the pathrnof political expedience. A “Message forrnAll Marines” from the Commandant,rnpacked with such phrases as “diversernwalks of life,” “privately held preferences,”rnand “respect for human dignity,”rncan only be interpreted as an effort, thinrnas it is, to pave the way for the inevitable.rnA Christmas card from a colonel at thernPentagon suggested that the momentrnClinton was elected, the staff there beganrnplanning how best to lift the ban onrnhomosexuals. Ad’ancing the inherentlyrndishonest “don’t ask, don’t tell” schemernto permit homosexuals to serve openlyrnin the Armed Forces will be easy. Therncourts are aptly doing so today. But sellingrnthe President’s policy to the men inrnthe trenches will be impossible.rnSadlv, many officers will try, and in sorndoing will fail, to exhibit moral couragernand will sacrifice their credibility as theyrnattempt to conceal their spinelessnessrnwith talk of “status versus conduct,” “loyaltyrnto one’s commander,” “soldierlyrnobedience,” “diversity,” and “preference.”rnTalk of this kind reveals the worstrnform of coward. It not only shows an unwillingnessrnto stand up for what is right;rnit also exposes a hollow effort to justifyrninaction by appealing to inferior or irrelevantrn”virtues.” Some Marines will bernfooled, most will not be, and anotherrnstrand of the fraternal rope that binds allrnMarines will be broken.rnMarines are the last group to whomrnone should suggest that “status” andrn”conduct” are separable. To Marinesrnthey are identical. Marines are fighters,rndrinkers, and fornicators, behaviors forrnwhich they not only make no excusesrnbut which they wear on their sleeves.rnHow do you convince a man who basesrnhis reputation on last night’s exploitsrnthat a homosexual is not going to pursuernhis inclinations with equivalent vigor?rnGood luck.rnAlthough appeals to loyalty will bernmore successful than the “status versusrnconduct” mumbo-jumbo, they also willrnfail because loyalty runs both ways.rnOfficers must constantly guard againstrnviewing loyalty only as something duernthem. The loyalty of their Marines isrnsomething for which they must workrndaily, yet the greater loyalty, and the onernless spoken of, is that which proceedsrndow nwards, from officers to men. A selfabsorbedrnpolitician may not understandrnthis simple precept of leadership, butrncould it be that the Commandant of thernMarine Corps, once an enlisted manrnhimself, has forgotten so critical a principle?rnMarines will be enjoined to bernloyal to their Commander-in-Chief. Inrnfact, they must be loyal to the office butrnnot to the destructive silliness of thernoccupant. Loyalty to their Republicrnrequires them to make the distinction.rnWhere loyalty treads so does obedience,rnbut like loyalty, obedience mustrnbe merited even as it is expected. Thernclaim that the ultimate course of a goodrnwarrior is to accept orders, salute smartly,rnand continue to march assumesrnthat the orders merit such obedience.rnMarines love obedience. They learn tornlove it at boot camp, and if they are wellrnled they grow in their appreciation for it.rnHowever, if their obedience is abusedrnby foolish orders, they soon grow resentfulrnand skeptical. A good officer quicklyrnlearns that if his orders are wise and just,rnhe will earn the trust of his Marines, sornthat when the shrapnel flies, they willrnnot doubt but obey. An officer with arnreputation for unreasonable or unjust ordersrnmight be tolerated in garrison butrnwill be ignored under fire, hi his heart,rnthe Commandant must know thesernthings. Has his head been so filled withrnthe in’erse truths of politics that he notrnonly accepts them, but also believes thatrnhe can persuade his Marines to acceptrnthem, too?rnHis method suggests that he does.rnHe employs the already tired rhetoricrnthat has replaced the precise languagernof natural law. Where once we readrn”deviance” we now read “diversity.”rn”Preference” has replaced “profligacy.”rnMarines, however, hae a strong sense ofrnnatural law. They know that sodomy isrnwrong and see right through the Commandant’srntransparent words. The responsesrnfrom Marines range from a lancerncorporal’s “I’m unhappy with the Commandant’srnstance on homosexuals. . . .rnHe seems to have backed off from hisrnoriginal position. . . . 1 hope Congressrnwill be stronger” to a sergeant’s “Sir, thisrnis bull—t!”rnPolitics should not be the business ofrnan- Marine. Some of the greatest heroesrnof our Corps are well known for therncontempt they harbored for politicians.rnDoes the Commandant think ChestyrnPuller would have penned a message likernhis? Who can imagine Dan Daly ago-rnJULY 1994/39rnrnrn