WWJBD?

I see from the news that our armed forces have had another bad encounter with dead combatants, this latest kerfluffle stemming from photos taken as military forces pose with blown-up suicide bombers. We end up with another round of apologies, the folks who are supposed to be our allies moving closer to our declared enemies, and more discontented members of the populace ready to be recruited by the opposition.

It seems that trying to explain why these kinds of stunts aren’t good just isn’t getting through to the troops on the ground. They are in a rough place trying to get the job done. It’s little wonder that a need to celebrate being alive when people who tried to kill you are dead results in, sometimes, these macabre recorded expressions.

But I have a possible meme to spread that might resonate with our troops.

We can’t use the “WWJD?” (What Would Jesus Do?) meme. Jesus would be at least a conscientious objector, if not a protester of war anywhere.

But we could use a “WWJBD?” (What Would James Bond Do?) meme. James Bond would totally get behind effective lethal takedowns of the enemy, even ones with a certain gross-out factor. Effective, professional accomplishment of the mission is completely within “WWJBD?” territory.

On the other hand, James Bond would not get behind unnecessary collateral damage. Would James Bond pose himself with dead body parts, smile, and upload the photo to Facebook? Not at all. Would James Bond pose with dubious iconography and send out a press release? Hardly. Would James Bond collect together a few bodies, set up the camera, and take photos while having a whizz on the bodies? Unthinkable.

Can we recruit the idea and image of James Bond for a more consistently professional American fighting force? I think it’s worth a try at this point. Hopefully the Ian Fleming estate would agree.

Wesley R. Elsberry

Falconer. Interdisciplinary researcher: biology and computer science. Photographer. Husband. Christian. Activist.