This has nothing to do with the fact…

…that I despise the so-called ‘movie*’ called ‘Starship Troopers.’  It’s actually a hit on Cracked.com, who is doing its best to make that ‘movie’ a prophecy of the War on Terror.  Here’s the part that stuck in the craw: it’s the attempt to equate the first Bug attack (a debacle for the ‘good guys’) with Operation Anaconda in Afghanistan…

Operation Anaconda was the first major engagement of the War On Terror. The idea was to attack a force of around 200 Al Qaeda soldiers in the Shahi-Kot Valley from the west, causing them to flee into the waiting arms of more US soldiers in the east, in what’s known as a “Hammer and Anvil” strategy.

Just one problem: Al Qaeda did not flee, but stood their ground.

Just one other problem: There were not 200 enemy soldiers in the valley; there were up to five times that amount.

Just one further other problem: the US military planners had assumed the enemy were armed with machine guns; they actually had mortars, rifles and rockets, and the planners assumed that Al Qaeda were in the valley, (they were in caves in the mountains surrounding the valley), and a convoy broke off from the main “TF Hammer” force to reach an observation point they’d been assigned to. And an AC-130, which was supposed to be providing firing and recon support during the battle thought they were an Al Qaeda convoy and attacked them. This friendly fire battle resulted in the first casualty of the operation.

The rest of TF Hammer came under heavy mortar fire from the prepared and entrenched Al Qaeda, and their air support turned out to consist of six bombs, and their attack didn’t actually make it into the valley, meaning that TF Anvil, arriving via helicopter, did not close the trap as had been intended, but instead found a trap closing around them, as they were attacked by an enemy who was better prepared, better armed, in greater numbers, and from a better-fortified position than they expected.

…nice recap of Wikipedia, there.  But Cracked.com forgot the punchline:

Coalition Taliban
Strength 2,000 1,000
Casualties 15K, 82W app 800

…the military has a specialized term to describe the side of a military engagement that was the one that suffered 80% casualties, an eight-to-one casualty ratio against its opponents, and eventually quit the field: it’s ‘losing.’  Or, to put this in terms that Cracked.com (which I love as a site) might immediately understand: the US military ended up doing to the Taliban what Cracked.com did to that doll of theirs.  Which is why, I suppose, that the aforementioned punchline was omitted in the first place.

That’s it.  Everyone can go back to what they were doing.  Just wanted to get that on the record.

Moe Lane

*It doesn’t actually exist, you know.  It’s a group hallucination.


  • BigGator5 says:

    (Starship Troopers the movie and squeals) doesn’t actually exist, you know. It’s a group hallucination.
    I think we can all agree on that point.

  • A Z R says:

    Starship Troopers is some of the best cheese out there. If bothering with me suits your fancy, why do you hate it so?

  • Rob Crawford says:

    My objections to the piece of cinematic drek: it bears no resemblance to it’s namesake. The fascist Verhoeven used the book as toilet paper, and shot what he saw on it afterwards.

  • A Z R says:

    Ha, I see. Now I have to get the book, it seems.

  • Catseye says:

    It’s worth it, the book that is. And I agree that movie was an insult to the book it was supposed to be based on.

  • Ric Locke says:

    A Z R: Yes, by all means get the book. It’s enjoyable as a story, and makes a coherent argument for the POV it expresses. You may not agree with that argument, but it’s there, with evidence.

    The movie is, as you say, cheese — or, more precisely, Extruded Leftwing Braincheese Product. Ditch the title and the bald-faced lie that it’s based on the book, change a couple of character names, and Moe, Rob, and I would have enjoyed it on its own terms.


  • Cameron says:

    For what it’s worth, I have the Starship Troopers OVA. Sure, it takes liberties with the book but it’s not as bad.

  • Kresh says:

    That’s the movie that taught me to “Never Expect Anything Going Into A Movie.”

    I walked out of the theater and went to work (at my night job), bitter and cranky, but I emerged from work with a light heart as I realized that my disappointment was my own fault. I expected too much going in. After all, what did I expect Hollywood to do with one of the defining tomes of science fiction? Especially when it had a message that was guaranteed to make the leftys in Hollywood freak out?

    Besides, it’s not like Robocop was a good movie or anything. Fun, but not good. Really, where was my head at going in? Oh that’s right, my head was in the book, where it shouldn’t have been. Hollywood is, after all, quite predictable. They’ve been mangling stories and ideas for a long time, so this should have come as no surprise.

    That was a $7.50 lesson that I’ll never forget. Money well spent I’d say.

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