Every few months, a radical leftist emerges from his faculty office or coffee shop to “bravely” pen an anti-military screed—almost always wrapped around condescension directed against those simple-minded Americans who “uncritically” (their word) support soldiers who have volunteered to defend our nation. The latest edition of this faux “speak truth to power” nonsense comes from Salon and was published (of course) on Veteran’s Day. Justin Doolittle, a “freelance writer from Long Island” believes our military does not, in fact, “protect our freedoms.” Using tributes to troops at major sporting events as a launching pad, he takes issue with Indiana Pacers center Roy Hibbard’s common-sense statement that our troops are “protecting our country, they’re protecting the world, and, you know, obviously we wouldn’t have freedom without them.” Doolittle’s response: This is just an extraordinary sentence. It contains three distinct, factual claims. While the first two are highly debatable, let us suspend consideration of them in order to focus on the third, which is actually an outright falsehood. Not only does Hibbert confidently assert that “we wouldn’t have freedom” were it not for the beneficence of the U.S. military, but that this is “obviously” so. Freedom has become one of those politically charged terms that means whatever people need it to mean. There is no coherent conception of freedom, though, in which it only exists at the pleasure of the U.S. military. It’s simply a non sequitur. The “freedoms” most Americans think of when they hear the term are enshrined in constitutional and statutory law. They are in no way dependent on the size, scope or even the existence of the U.S. military. If John Lennon’s ghost assumed dictatorial control of the U.S. government tomorrow and, as his first order of business, disbanded the entire military, Americans’ “freedoms” would not suddenly vanish. This is perhaps one of the most historically illiterate statements ever made in the pages ofSalon (and that’s quite a distinction). Read my full response to that nonsense over on AmSpec’s blog.