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Real Heroes

Mark of Zorro

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Most of my heroes have one peculiar thing in common: they all broke with their own people/government to uphold principles. While there were several people I would hold up as heroes in the past, I never knew about this common thread until I read the line in Harry Potter about how its easier to stand up to one's enemies than to one's friends. Then it hit me....that is how I had been choosing my heroes! And for this, and so many other important philosophical points in her books, J.K Rowling is one of my heroes.

That said, this thread is to list real life heroes, especially those who are not commonly recognized, but should be.
 
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Mark of Zorro

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I will start with Wichard von Alvensleben, who on or near this day (April 27) in 1945, as a captain, led his Wehrmacht unit, against orders and on his own initiative, against Waffen SS troops who were believed to be about to execute 140 Allied prisoners of war. Outnumbered, the SS troops fled, but it very well could have been a battle between German soldiers over the fate of prisoners of war, and apparently, he was ready to fight on the side of good in that battle.

This is what a real hero looks like and the name of Wichard von Alvensleben should be well known to everyone who has ever studied modern history.

He was a devout Christian. I may be agnostic and critical, but its Christians like this why I go easy on Christianity. He is not alone.

 

mdchachi

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The first person that occurred to me after seeing your example was Desmond Doss.
He's not unknown as he was feted after the war and a major motion picture was made about him recently but he definitely fits your definition.
 

Mark of Zorro

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he definitely fits your definition.

I would definitely not say definitely. I would have included Desmond Doss myself but the problem is that he only half broke with the government. While he refused to be a killer for them, he still went to serve in the war as he was told, despite not wanting to go help at all as the entire affair was against his principles (though not mine). He has a good excuse though and that is because he was under duress to go He would fit the definition if he just didn't serve at all, the principle here being to refuse a government that forces men to go to war. I also lament that he accepted military decorations from those people. I would have thrown them on the ground.

But the main reason I hold him in high esteem is that he saved "enemy" lives as well despite grumblings from the non-thinking killers around him. There he truly broke with his people to serve principle.

Was he feted so much after the war? In what ways? I certainly never heard about him in my history classes. His name should be before Patton if you ask me.
 

bentenmusume

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He's not a war hero, but one of my personal "heroes" (or just someone I admire) is the author Haruki Murakami.

His works often have strongly anti-war and anti-violence themes, and when he was awarded the Jerusalem Prize, he used the opportunity to go there and deliver a rebuke of Israel's military efforts against Palestine in the form of his "The Wall and the Egg" speech about the importance of standing up to powerful institutions and authorities.

It's a good read for anyone not familiar with it already:

Again, not a war hero, but I definitely admire anyone who is willing to speak truth to power.
 
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Mark of Zorro

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Muhammad Ali is another. He refused to be drafted to fight in the Vietnamese Civil War as I call it, or as the Vietnamese call it, the Resistance War Against America.

Why did he refuse? Because he had no grudge against any of the Vietnamese people. Why would he? He knew who is his enemies were; it was the racist White people of the United States, especially those in government who were still continuing many forms of apartheid/segregation despite recent civil rights gains by non-White people in America.

For his refusal to be a tool of aggressive/ evil/ profiteering war he was refused a boxing license in all states, had his titles stripped from him, could not box in his peak years, and nearly lost his career. He was convicted but appealed, and through many appeals, those convictions were over-turned.

That he was ever convicted for this is a stain on the United States. Free country my hairy White behind.

Muhammad Ali was a true hero. A hero of principle against the scum that run my country.

 

Mark of Zorro

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Again, not a war hero, but I definitely admire anyone who is willing to speak truth to power.

No where did I specify "war hero". In fact, I find that phrase unpalatable. War makes monsters, not heroes. Heroes do not succumb to the loss of principle that is war, or, they return to principle despite fighting in it.

War is useful for finding examples of heroes. But your submission of Haruki Murakami is perfect. Zionists are slime and full marks to Murakami for opposing them.
 

bentenmusume

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Sorry, I didn't mean "war hero" in that sense, but in the sense of someone like the first two figures cited, who resisted authority to perform acts of compassion and principle in battle.

I'm glad you find Murakami an appropriate example, and I agree 120% about Muhammad Ali. Definitely a hero in my (and I would hope anyone's) book.
 
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mdchachi

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Was he feted so much after the war? In what ways?
Not sure if “feted” is the right word but he was recognized by at least two presidents (Truman & JFK) and given a Medal of Honor.
I certainly never heard about him in my history classes.
Haha that’s not a surprise. Our American schools barely scratch the surface.
 

Mark of Zorro

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he was recognized by at least two presidents (Truman & JFK) and given a Medal of Honor.

For all the wrong reasons in my opinion. I doubt either of them said "Good job defying the governmental scum that tried to make you into a killer despite your clear religious beliefs and the Constitution."
 

mdchachi

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For all the wrong reasons in my opinion. I doubt either of them said "Good job defying the governmental scum that tried to make you into a killer despite your clear religious beliefs and the Constitution."
They probably didn’t mention the saving enemy lives part.
 
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