Some Things We Don't Talk About
by James Glaser
When America starts talking about a possible war with Iraq there are some things that we as a nation find too distasteful to talk about. For sure no body wants to talk about possible American casualties. Also it is a given that we don't talk about the Iraqi children that will be killed and there will be thousands.
There are some things everyone likes to talk about. There is Liberation and Democracy. Regime change is a good one and getting rid of Weapons of Mass Destruction is always fine.
However nobody wants to even mention the women that will die in this war and if the last Gulf War is used as a "ruler" to measure these deaths, over 35,000 women will not get to be liberated this time. Lets not talk about all the disease that accompanies all wars, as nobody likes that either.
Getting the troops home is another subject that never seems to make it to the front page, but we can talk about keeping Saddam from starting the oil fields on fire.
Liberation as I said is fine, but only to a point. We can liberate the whole country, but a group like the Kurds can not even think about liberation for their people. Like it or not Kurdistan will always be under the control of Baghdad.
America can mention the army of occupation, but we can't be too clear on that either. The Pentagon will tell us, hundreds of thousands of troops will be needed, while the White House will say that figure is way off base.
We can talk about war costs in broad terms, but not for the whole war. "We will keep the troops there as long as needed, but not a day longer." There, that explains that right?
Sometimes things are mentioned that should not be. Like the use of nuclear weapons. Nuclear weapons should never be spoken of, nor their potential use. Talking like that could hurt support for the troops.
Some people have even brought forward the idea that this war will cause more terrorism. However, President Bush explained that by attacking Iraq the Israeli/Palistine troubles would fix themselves. In fact, this war is about the only thing America can do to end that crisis.
There are some church leaders that will tell you that this war is wrong and against the teachings of God, but yes, there are other church leaders that will tell you that this war is God's work.
Washington would rather no one talked about anything as "loose lips sink ships." "Either you are with us or you are with the terrorists" People that ask questions are now branded, unpatriotic.
If America is going to war and it looks like we are, then all Americans have a right and a duty to our Nation and those troops who will be doing the actual fighting. That duty is to ask all the questions about this war before we attack and demand those in Washington answer all the questions we have. Americans must remember that we are a Democracy and that your question is just as great as some Senators. Those in Washington sometimes forget that they are working as our representatives and that in America all people are equal. I guess I can take that "sometimes" back.
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