Suck it up
Corporal Ashley Birt, 22, Lance Corporal Luke Gavin, 27, and Captain Bryce Duffy, 26.
How many of us could deal with working in a hostile foreign environment, far away from our families and friends and, when four of our co-workers are murdered and seven more injured, you don't strike, or call for an inquiry, or write an email to HR, you just suck it up and get back on with it ...
This was essentially the situation facing Australian armed forces last week after an Afghan national soldier fired on a parade at a base in Shah Wali Kot, in Kandahar province.
He killed three Diggers and an Afghan interpreter. Seven were wounded, including three Australians, two interpreters and two Afghan national army soldiers.
However, you'd have been hard-pressed over the weekend to realise this had even happened, so swamped were we with coverage of the Qantas grounding; journalists and passengers stamping their feet over the bloody inconvenience if it, while the families of the dead soldiers no doubt wondered if their country had forgotten them.
Listening to the moaning from travellers and commentators made me wonder if some of them were even aware how petty it sounded to complain about a missed flight or being kept waiting in a two-hour phone queue, while our soldiers suffered through the single deadliest day of our deployment in Afghanistan.
Maybe these sooks didn't know, I reasoned.
Maybe, with all the information surging over us via the internet, TV, radio, newspapers and mobile phones, the significance of the shootings had simply been diluted so much it had been lost altogether?
Or, perhaps, we're just inured to the deaths of soldiers? We're up to 32 fatalities in Afghanistan; it's not really a story any more, is it?
Perhaps, like most editors and exec producers across the country seemed to think, the Qantas grounding truly was a more important event than three men losing their lives in defence of our national interests?
This is the often appalling nature of decision-making in the media - where those in power have to judge the self-interest or apathy of the consumer - sometimes anticipating it, other times fuelling it - but in this case, I think the media got it right.
Which is not to say the deaths of three soldiers was less important than an industrial dispute that affected hundreds of thousands of people directly and indirectly; it's just the public cared more about the Qantas groundings, so the media gave the people what they wanted.
Hmmm - thousands for Qantas, versus hundreds for the Diggers, though you could argue the Qantas story was "global" and Google's "number of sources" doesn't reflect audience engagement, simply a media frenzy.
Then again, there's the fact "Alan Joyce", "Qantas" and "Anthony Albanese" were all trending worldwide on Twitter (the Diggers were not) - indicating "in excess of a thousand tweets per minute", according to the SMH.
Why? On top of the tens of thousands of people put out by flight cancellations, there were all the Qantas shareholders who wanted to know what was up with their investment, the fact a beleaguered PM was copping another roundhouse when she needed it least, and that our industrial relations laws were shown to be lacking.
There were angles everywhere for the media, and for the public, so it's a bit rich to take shots at the blanket coverage as Media Watch did on Monday night.
If newspapers and TV had gone hard on the Diggers' story - they'd have opened themselves up to being exploitative - pedalling in grief porn - while ignoring the concerns of everyday Aussies marooned and ignored by our national airline.
No, the media coverage of the Qantas groundings was simply the bulldog on the front of the Mack truck, a mere symbol heralding the heavy machinery of Australia's great preoccupation: themselves.
My flight to Bali, or my cancelled meeting, or my share portfolio dipping 5 per cent concerns me far more than a soldier dying in a faraway land.
The media knew that, because that's the new Australia.
Suck it up, Diggers; this is what you're fighting for.