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Defender of the Faith


            What happens when you lie and use others to get what you want? It comes back to bite you in the butt is what. In the story "Defender of the Faith" the character Grossbart is taught this. .
             Grossbart uses his Father, his friends, Larry Fishbein and Mickey Halpern, and Sergeant Nathan Marx. He also lies to Sergeant Marx.
             Grossbart first uses Sgt. Marx to get out of the G.I. Parties that occur on Friday nights at the Camp Crowder. When Sgt. Marx gives an order that "Jewish personnel who want to attend services this evening are to fall out in front of the orderly room at 1900, by order of Captain Barrett," Grossbart believes he can go even further. He forges his father's signature on a letter to Congressman Franconi, complaining about the food at training camp. When Captain Barrett receives a phone call from Major Harry Sgt. Marx is called in to give an explanation. When no explanation can be given Captain Barrett and Sgt. Marx go to talk to Grossbart concerning the letter received by the Congressman. Two days later another letter addressed to the Congressman is passed down the chain of command. This letter states that Grossbart has decided to suffer through the breech in religion for all the Jews in Europe. In the letter Sgt. Marx is given an acknowledgement. This puzzles Sgt. Marx, he wonders if Grossbart felt "he"d gone to far? Was the letter a strategic retreat-a crafty attempt to strengthen what he considered our alliance?" Through all of this Grossbart uses his friends Fishbein and Halpern as excuses.
             Grossbart also lies to Sgt. Marx. He tells Marx, "I've got relatives in St. Louis, and they say they"ll give me a whole Passover dinner if I can get down there." Sgt. Marx gives Grossbart a pass when he (Grossbart) decides to go to St. Louis with or without a pass, on the condition that he "Don't tell anybody." However, a few minutes later Grossbart comes back with Halpern and Fishbein, he had told them about the pass.


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