Thursday, July 17, 2008
The Oxford English Dictionary defines jingoism as "extreme nationalism in the form of aggressive foreign policy" or excessive bias in judging one's own country's superiority. Symbolism to me plays a part and what else symbolises the United States' superiority than the eagle? The eagle represents power, aggression, domination and terror. Some readily associate the eagle with USA. But as the saying goes "use your head'" - not all eagles are Americans! Take this for example, which I found on the internet:
"A must - check out this awesome paint job! Check out what some of our boys overseas did to their helicopter. Some Afghan is probably freaking out right now. The story is : this very special Mi-24 helicopter is presently flying in Afghanistan, where it is no doubt causing quite a stir. God Bless the USA"
Whilst correctly identifying the chopper as a Hind, the author forgot that the Hinds in the US inventory only act as OPFOR in exercises. Whilst he is obviously thrilled at the full-fuselage artwork, stirring his patriotism, that particular Hind is NOT American. It actually belongs to the Hungarian Air Force and was specially painted for an airshow. And the chronic lack of geographical knowledge of some Americans is manifest here : The buildings and surroundings in the first picture are nothing like in Afghanistan- it shouts Eastern Europe loud and clear!