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← Group blasts Marine Corps for reviving 'Crusaders' name and symbols

Group blasts Marine Corps for reviving 'Crusaders' name and symbols - Comments

Just a thought...'s Avatar Comment 1 by Just a thought...

All debate about the "Crusaders" emblem aside..."Werewolves"...really? What did he do...let his third grader pick the new mascot?

Sun, 22 Apr 2012 21:53:09 UTC | #936532

mordacious1's Avatar Comment 2 by mordacious1

I'd like to know the reason that LTC Wiegel is giving for renaming the unit. During it's founding in WWII, the unit was known as the Werewolves and then the Candystripers. When they were first unit in the Marines to convert to the F8 Crusader in 1957, they changed the nickname to the Crusaders. In 1965, they transitioned to F4 Phantoms during Vietnam. Prior to deployment to Operation Iraqi Freedom, the unit name was changed back to Werewolves in order not to give offense to locals.

Wiegel's argument is probably that if they are not deployed in the Middle East, they should be able to revert to their old name. This argument doesn't hold up for three reasons: 1) Violation of the First Amendment, 2) Werewolves is a name that contains the history of the unit, 3) They no longer fly the F8 Crusader fighter. This appears to be merely a way to poke the Muslims in the eye and is a bad move.

He might consider renaming them The Pappy Boyington Squadron, who was their most famous unit leader.

Sun, 22 Apr 2012 21:56:41 UTC | #936534

Nordic11's Avatar Comment 3 by Nordic11

Thirty years ago, the Chrisitian college I attended changed our mascot from the Crusaders to the Eagles. It is shocking that this would still be considered. Why don't they just include the confederate flag while their at it, and they could greatly broaden the number of people they offend.

Sun, 22 Apr 2012 22:48:35 UTC | #936547

Sjoerd Westenborg's Avatar Comment 4 by Sjoerd Westenborg

Weinstein says that members of the military who contacted his group — mostly moderate Protestants and Catholics — felt that the decision was blatantly religious.

I am going to chalk one up for the moderates.

Sun, 22 Apr 2012 22:52:15 UTC | #936548

glenister_m's Avatar Comment 5 by glenister_m

A Canadian comedian pointed out that if he were a James Bond villain, he would name his henchman something so silly/ridiculous (eg. "Poopypants") that the henchman would kill anyone who heard it (ie. James Bond). The reverse idea was put forward by a "Mini" ad a few years ago, which compared the car a man drove to the size of his manhood (Ferrarri, when you are trying to compensate for your shortcomings, "Mini, when you have nothing to prove.").

So rather than "Werewolves", perhaps they should pick something unmasculine, and dare anyone to make fun of them.

Sun, 22 Apr 2012 23:17:53 UTC | #936551

78rpm's Avatar Comment 6 by 78rpm

So rather than "Werewolves", perhaps they should pick something unmasculine, and dare anyone to make fun of them.

As in Shel Silverstein's song immortalized by Johnny Cash, "A Boy Named Sue."

Sun, 22 Apr 2012 23:22:17 UTC | #936554

Alternative Carpark's Avatar Comment 7 by Alternative Carpark

The military on the whole is rather juvenile in my opinion.

Mon, 23 Apr 2012 00:20:13 UTC | #936564

S. Gudmundsson's Avatar Comment 8 by S. Gudmundsson

Well, at least they're being honest about it now.

Mon, 23 Apr 2012 00:36:44 UTC | #936567

squeegee's Avatar Comment 9 by squeegee

The emblem certainly needs to be changed, it's blatantly provocotive and obviously religious and can only cause problems.

On a lighter note, the name of one of my favourite rugby teams, NZ's Canterbury Crusaders has always annoyed me too, although in it's defense having it's home base in Christchurch has probably got more to do with it than intentionally having a Christian logo.

Mon, 23 Apr 2012 04:53:23 UTC | #936599

TrickyDicky's Avatar Comment 10 by TrickyDicky

Comment 2 by mordacious1 :

I'd like to know the reason that LTC Wiegel is giving for renaming the unit.

One word FLUORIDATION, it has contaminated his precious bodily fluids.

Mon, 23 Apr 2012 06:37:02 UTC | #936609

Vorlund's Avatar Comment 11 by Vorlund

Comment 5 by glenister_m :

A Canadian comedian pointed out that if he were a James Bond villain, he would name his henchman something so silly/ridiculous (eg. "Poopypants") that the henchman would kill anyone who heard it (ie. James Bond). The reverse idea was put forward by a "Mini" ad a few years ago, which compared the car a man drove to the size of his manhood (Ferrarri, when you are trying to compensate for your shortcomings, "Mini, when you have nothing to prove."). So rather than "Werewolves", perhaps they should pick something unmasculine, and dare anyone to make fun of them.

Like 'The Flying Nancy Boys'? instead of flying leathernecks.

Mon, 23 Apr 2012 06:46:52 UTC | #936611

Cartomancer's Avatar Comment 12 by Cartomancer

On a lighter note, the name of one of my favourite rugby teams, NZ's Canterbury Crusaders has always annoyed me too, although in it's defense having it's home base in Christchurch has probably got more to do with it than intentionally having a Christian logo.

Interestingly historically inaccurate too. While the Canterbury region of New Zealand's South Island was named after the medieval English city and diocese of Canterbury, which was a major centre in the preaching of crusader rhetoric, the city of Christ Church was not named after the medieval Christ Church Cathedral in Canterbury. Christ Church NZ was named after Christ Church College, Oxford, where Robert Godley, one of the major colonial leaders, studied as an undergraduate. Christ Church Oxford was founded in 1548 and thus has no crusader history at all.

Mon, 23 Apr 2012 08:24:52 UTC | #936621

Cartomancer's Avatar Comment 13 by Cartomancer

On the subject of the unit's name change, though, I can't say I'm terribly concerned. Crusader imagery is fairly mainstream these days (that will happen after eight hundred years) and adopting some of it as a military insignium seems pretty harmless to me. Okay, perhaps somewhat counter-productive if the unit were actually being deployed in the Middle East, but it isn't. Are Americans now expected to take the alien cultural sensibilities of people half a world away into account when they're not doing anything in those people's vicinity? And isn't it the actually being deployed in the Middle East, bombing stuff, killing people and stealing the oil, that pisses them off, rather than the use of historically sensitive symbols on aircraft they're never likely to see?

Or are the objectors really trying to suggest that this is introducing religion into the military? Do they think that using a templar cross as an identification badge will make the marines behave like crusading knights templar any more than using a werewolf will make them howl at the full moon and try to tear their enemies apart with their bare hands? Given that the Templars were disbanded in 1312 and many of their number tried for heresy and burned at the stake, I doubt it's exactly a thriving religious subculture in modern America. The odd Da Vinci Code nutter notwithstanding of course.

In Britain we have a newspaper that use a templar knight as its crest (the Daily Express) and nobody has ever complained that this is needlessly religious even though we actually did have real crusaders in this country, where America clearly did not. If anything it's Europeans who should be annoyed, given that these upstart yanks are trying to appropriate our Twelfh and Thirteenth Century miltary culture for their own! Surely to goodness crusader imagery in America of all places is nothing more than a bit of quaint medieval fetishism for the saking of pining after a sense of history?

Mon, 23 Apr 2012 08:57:15 UTC | #936624

Chomolungma's Avatar Comment 14 by Chomolungma

Cartomancer:

Given that the Templars were disbanded in 1312 and many of their number tried for heresy and burned at the stake, I doubt it's exactly a thriving religious subculture in modern America.

I'm sure it isn't, but unfortunately after Anders Breivik, invoking the Templars does have a modern and extremist resonance.

Mon, 23 Apr 2012 09:20:10 UTC | #936628

Ignorant Amos's Avatar Comment 15 by Ignorant Amos

There is a football team in Belfast called "Crusaders FC" complete with badge depicting a Knights Templar,

Many names were suggested for the club, including Rowan Star, Cultra United, Queen's Rovers, Mervue Wanderers and the Lilliputians. Thomas Wade felt that a name of more international significance should be adopted and he suggested 'Crusaders', after the medieval Christian knights.

Mon, 23 Apr 2012 10:36:10 UTC | #936641

Cartomancer's Avatar Comment 16 by Cartomancer

Actually, the more I think about it "Crusader" nicknames are pretty ubiquitous. There was a World War II Crusader Tank, a Battleship called the HMS Crusader, a model of mid-20th century train called Crusader and an "Operation Crusader" in the North African Campaign. Then there's Batman "the Caped Crusader", numerous other comic book, video game and fantasy novel titles, several bands called The Crusaders, a 1979 Chris de Burgh album, the aforementioned sports teams and others like them (mainly Rugby teams), at least one famous race horse and several US Civil Rights Era campaigning newspapers all called "Crusader".

Mon, 23 Apr 2012 11:17:47 UTC | #936647

djandersonza's Avatar Comment 17 by djandersonza

What I love is the total misinterpretation of history; the crusades were a response to Muslim aggression and Muslim invasion of the Holy Land. Islam was conquering north Africa and the Middle East. I suppose that Spain was ALWAYS and Islamic country and the reconqista was a successful invasion and colonization of Islamic lands? But yes, the use of the word "Crusade" is likely be in interpreted by many as inflammatory.

Mon, 23 Apr 2012 11:29:16 UTC | #936648

drumdaddy's Avatar Comment 18 by drumdaddy

The cross is a symbol of torture, the lowercase 't' is the mnemonic. Nothing holy here, folks, just a sentimental tribute to tortures gone by.

Mon, 23 Apr 2012 11:29:57 UTC | #936649

Igor Trip's Avatar Comment 19 by Igor Trip

The real problem with the name Crusader is that the Crusades were a total disaster!

Ignorant Europeans, totally oblivious of the politics of the middle east, rampaged through the area killing everyone, and then after many long expensive campaigns were kicked out.

Crusader is a name to avoid.

Mon, 23 Apr 2012 11:55:41 UTC | #936653

PERSON's Avatar Comment 20 by PERSON

Comment 14 by Chomolungma

I think you have something there. It is a set of symbols and stories that resonates with contemporary racists, particularly those with fascist tendencies.

It's subtle, though, as there are ideas of loyalty, brotherhood, elder (male) wisdom and so on which are patriarchal and militaristic, but not overtly fascist as such. For example, I think they show up in the BBC TV series "Robin Hood" and "Merlin", both of which draw on mythologised imagery of crusaders.

Mon, 23 Apr 2012 12:33:04 UTC | #936664

Ignorant Amos's Avatar Comment 21 by Ignorant Amos

Check out today's google icon in the UK for today.....it's meant to be St. George to celebrate St.George's day, but it sure looks like a Knights Templar to me }80)~

Mon, 23 Apr 2012 13:10:15 UTC | #936670

Odalrich's Avatar Comment 22 by Odalrich

I think things are already troubled enough as to add more fuel to the fire. The Crusaders under the cross of Saint George, similar to the cross of Knights of the Templar, committed many atrocities in the Middle East and the meaning of these symbols (a red cross on a white background) in the Muslim world is similar to the swastika in Europe. Never mind if the meaning of the swastika is one of love and purity in Asia, in Europe is a symbol of intolerance and terror. The Marine Corps can be a very efficient institution from the military standpoint, but when it come to choosing symbols, their intelligence is nil, especially if what is intended is to make friends in the Muslim world.

Mon, 23 Apr 2012 15:30:18 UTC | #936707

jimbobjim's Avatar Comment 23 by jimbobjim

Crusade - according to the Oxfod Dictionary:

Origin: late 16th century (originally as croisade): from French croisade, an alteration (influenced by Spanish cruzado) of earlier croisée, literally 'the state of being marked with the cross', based on Latin crux, cruc- 'cross'; in the 17th century the form crusado, from Spanish cruzado, was introduced. The blending of these two forms led to the current spelling, first recorded in the early 18th century

Interesting

Mon, 23 Apr 2012 16:37:18 UTC | #936730

Cartomancer's Avatar Comment 24 by Cartomancer

What I love is the total misinterpretation of history; the crusades were a response to Muslim aggression and Muslim invasion of the Holy Land. Islam was conquering north Africa and the Middle East. I suppose that Spain was ALWAYS and Islamic country and the reconqista was a successful invasion and colonization of Islamic lands?

Well... not quite. The muslims got to the Holy Land under the Rashidun Caliphate in the mid seventh century, and to Spain under the Umayyads by the middle of the eighth century. The first crusade was launched against the muslims of the Holy Land in 1090 by Urban II, and promoted heavily by Bernard of Clairvaux and the monastic network of Cluny. That's 400 years later. It would be like the English fighting a war to regain the territories of the USA in 2183AD.

And while the first crusade was ostensibly coming to the aid of christians against muslim expansion the christians in question were the Byzantines, whose outlying southern possessions in what is now Turkey were under threat. Hundreds of miles away from Jerusalem. Latin christians had no territorial claims to the Holy Land region since the splitting of the Roman Empire (285 or 476AD, depending on how you judge it). So, essentially, it would be like the French launching a war to regain the territories of the USA for the English in 2183, then staying and administer them

The Byzantine emperor had asked for military help - he was expecting something to the tune of a few battallions of soldiers. What he got was a massive horde of penniless peasant pilgrims followed by ambitious knights eager to do their killing-and-looting thing somewhere new and interesting where they wouldn't have to do penance when they got out of hand. There was plenty of piety about, but to pretend that the crusades were a noble or defensive endeavour in the face of strong muslim aggression is going rather too far.

Mon, 23 Apr 2012 17:18:32 UTC | #936743

coolegg's Avatar Comment 25 by coolegg

Some traditions are meant to die. This is one.

Mon, 23 Apr 2012 18:41:38 UTC | #936769

Border Collie's Avatar Comment 26 by Border Collie

Seriously, who cares? They're fighting a medieval enemy, Islamists, so why not go medieval on them? It's a false belief that this will cause the deaths of more American soldiers. Trying to appease Muslims doesn't do anything but make them more volatile and barbaric. Or, am I the only one who's noticed this? And, who cares if it's "blatantly provocative"? We're not there to have cookies and milk. Everything is provocative to Muslims. Our very existence on the Earth is provocative to Muslims. They cannot be appeased into non-violence so why even try?

Mon, 23 Apr 2012 23:51:15 UTC | #936849

squeegee's Avatar Comment 27 by squeegee

          [Comment 26](/articles/645695-group-blasts-marine-corps-for-reviving-crusaders-name-and-symbols/comments?page=1#comment_936849) by  [Border Collie](/profiles/36666)          :


                 Seriously, who cares?  They're fighting a medieval enemy, Islamists, so why not go medieval on them? It's a false belief that this will cause the deaths of more American soldiers. Trying to appease Muslims doesn't do anything but make them more volatile and barbaric.  Or, am I the only one who's noticed this? And, who cares if it's "blatantly provocative"?  We're not there to have cookies and milk.  Everything is provocative to Muslims.  Our very existence on the Earth is provocative to Muslims.  They cannot be appeased into non-violence so why even try?

I disagree Collie, the majority of Muslims just want to get on with their lives like us freethinkers. It's a minority who will never be satisfied and keep on fighting for their pathetic sky fairy no matter what we in the West do.

For a Marine outfit to go bandying about a symbol that is blatantly provocotive is nothing short of criminal..all it can possibly do is fuel more hatred and put those moderate muslims who we CAN talk to offside.

Tue, 24 Apr 2012 02:32:09 UTC | #936888

locka's Avatar Comment 28 by locka

I hope the "crusaders" have the good sense not to wear badges or insignia in actual combat zone. It's pretty dumb to provoke Muslims by wearing Christian symbols when the US army is desperately trying to win them over.

Tue, 24 Apr 2012 08:37:40 UTC | #936948

Stafford Gordon's Avatar Comment 29 by Stafford Gordon

How childish and deliberately provocative.

Tue, 24 Apr 2012 17:28:14 UTC | #937049

QuestioningKat's Avatar Comment 30 by QuestioningKat

Who is paying for this Marine Corp to paint this symbol on F-18s? (It is a smart ass comment, that requires no reply.)

Why is it that this is from Beaufort SC and not somewhere like Maine? (This is another smart ass comment, that requires no reply.)

Thu, 26 Apr 2012 01:19:21 UTC | #937379