- By Thomas E. RicksThomas E. Ricks covered the U.S. military for the Washington Post from 2000 through 2008.
Sickening historical footnote: While browsing the web about the Indian wars, I stumbled across this 1891 newspaper editorial about Wounded Knee by L. Frank Baum, who went on nine years later to write The Wonderful Wizard of Oz:
The Pioneer has before declared that our only safety depends upon the total extirmination of the Indians. Having wronged them for centuries we had better, in order to protect our civilization, follow it up by one more wrong and wipe these untamed and untamable creatures from the face of the earth. In this lies future safety for our settlers and the soldiers who are under incompetent commands. Otherwise, we may expect future years to be as full of trouble with the redskins as those have been in the past.”
Follow the yellow brick road indeed.