And Just Why Does It Upset Me
by James Glaser
It just tears me apart when I hear the little biographies of some of those Americans that have lost their life in this war with Iraq. It is my honest belief that these young men and women were sacrificed because George Bush and those around him, had no patience. Now we have scared young men and women in the hands of Saddam Hussein's thugs, as Prisoners of War. I am so afraid that Iraq has read the reports of America torturing our prisoners or that Iraq has seen the films of how we treat the prisoners we keep in cages in Cuba.
Iraq is ruled by a sick dictator in Saddam Hussein, a man that was Americas "friend" for over twenty years and an arch foe for the last twelve, but for all of that time he was a evil cruel leader, who had little regard for his own people. However the people of Iraq have been suffering under all of the thirty plus years of Saddam's rule. That does not make them bad people, but that is how they are painted. Several times the oppressed people of Iraq have attempted to rise up and defeat Saddam and this with the promise of help from the United States, even from the very words of the first President Bush. When they did rise up, America sat on the side lines and watched them get slaughtered. This is true and now part of history. Today we are attacking Iraq again and who suffers the most? The very people that we have betrayed in the past. The people that have done all the suffering under Saddam.
Americans I have figured out do not relate our September 11th terrorist attack with our wars. Many in our country still do not realize that our attacks on various little countries, (I say little countries because that is who we have been attacking for the last thirty years.) are just as devastating and shocking to the people in those countries as that terrorist attack was to us.
Americans have no comprehension of what repeated B-52 bomb runs are like. Even from miles away the ground shakes and there is a rumble that goes on and on. Up close and you are dead, a little ways away and the sound is deafening and huge clumps of earth are thrown into the air. An attack with B-52s is the essence of "Shock and Awe."
There is something universal on this globe and that is love. People that have lost loved ones at the World Trade Center were just crushed and still today feel like their families have been victimized by a horrible crime and they have.
When America attacks some foreign country, no matter how right we feel we are, the people that lose loved ones in that attack are every bit as crushed as those in New York and just like those people in New York, these people feel that they are victims of a horrible crime too. That is because both groups of survivors feel the same strong bond of love for those that were killed.
Today as we continue to attack Iraq, the people that lose loved ones are not looking at this war as Just. These people that lose loved ones might hate Saddam Hussein just as much as George Bush does, but they feel their husband, wife, son, daughter, who ever was killed was a good person and did not deserve to die. These people have the same fear and hate for the Terrorists that killed their loved ones as World Trade Center Victims do.
The difference is that the victims of America's attacks can put a home address on the terrorists that killed their loved ones and that is the United States. In each and every country we attack and there have been many, we are terrorizing an innocent population. War is terror and no matter how just we believe our cause is, we devastate thousands of "survivors" in those countries. We are making strides in protecting innocent civilians, but we are still killing thousands of people that never did us any harm in each war.
When George Bush tells the world our war is not with the Iraqi people, the whole world knows that he is lying. They know this because most of this world has seen war or at least their parents have. America has truly been blessed by God because real War has not come to our shores since Pearl Harbor, or to the continental United States in living memory.
Unfortunately that leaves most of our population ignorant about what happens in war and here is what upsets me so much. Our government and our media do everything they can to keep Americans from learning of the real harm we are doing to innocent people all over the world with our wars. I am member of the Veterans of Foreign Wars, and since World War 2, there have been something like sixty three "little Wars" that qualify members of the American Armed Forces to join the VFW. That is better than one little war per year and we had Vietnam going for over ten years and Korea lasted for a while too. So you can see they were not all "little".
Back to the Media and our Government. The Government distorts everything by calling our Military branch of the government, the Department of Defense. During the Second World War it was called the Department of War. But after the war they found it hard to ask Congress for money because the war was over. Somebody came up with the bright idea that everyone would feel good about paying for Defense. So they changed the name in 1947, and as we all know it worked.
The truth be told it is still the Department of War, because that is what it does. Our military attacks other countries and they do that often. I am not going to get into the whole Military Industrial Complex that President Dwight Eisenhower warned us about, but it is there, it employs hundreds of thousands, and it does make a few people fabulously wealthy.
Those wealthy people and their corporations spend quite a lot of the tax money we pay them for weapons on lobbying Congress, to not only give more funds to the Department of 'Defense", but also to keep having these little wars so that the cycle keeps going. If we don't have enough wars to keep profits high enough, Congress loans and gives countries that are our "friends" weapons to defend themselves with. That is how Saddan Hussein and the Afghans got all of their weapons, we gave them to them. Well Congress did the giving and taxpayers paid for them. Today Americans are getting killed with some of the weapons we gave to Iraq.
Now you can't keep having wars if everyone knows how horrible they are, so in the name of decency, our media will not allow the American public to see what really happens in a war. They did for a while during Vietnam and it almost tore the country apart. So there will be no more of that. Now we can see Marines shooting rifles or artillery, but we can never see what they hit. We can see air strikes from miles away, always too far away to see any blood or gore. Also a real favorite today is the films of the Precision Guided Missiles or bombs that hit the target right dead center and from 20,000 feet away it looks pretty antiseptic. Also as we have now learned from the first Gulf War these films can be faked with ease.
Just like in Vietnam, casualty figures are still made to play with. Even though over a hundred and fifty thousand Gulf War veterans are permanently disabled and over eight thousand have died since coming home from that war due to Gulf War Illness, the media still uses the figures of 147 killed and a few hundred wounded. Hey if a lot of our people get hurt then we can't keep having these little money makers called War.
So what it comes down to is I get upset because I have figured out how much our government and media manipulate the American public so that individuals and corporations can make fortunes. I get upset because there are so many people in this country that can't see that war is terror and will believe a President if he says this war is "Just", over and over again.
I also get upset with our nation because we keep saying this Mantra about supporting the troops as the Congress and the President keep cutting the Budget for Veterans Hospital care. I get upset because we have a President that does not give a rats ass for American Veterans, but will wrap himself tightly in our flag.
But most of all I get upset because America is year in and year out killing innocent people, supporting Governments that kill innocent people, and I can see that my children and grandchildren are going to pay for that. You can only terrorize the world for so long before it comes back on you and I am sorry to say, the September 11th attack is just the start.
George Bush feels it is necessary to start limiting the freedoms that American citizens have always had, George believes that violence can protect us from terrorism. I believe that America's violence is the very reason for terrorism and I also believe if we take away freedom we lose our country. Freedom is the basis of our country and I would rather we give up the profits from war than give up our freedom. George Bush and I see the solution to terrorism differently. I believe that violence begets violence, while George Bush must by his actions believe that violence begets peace.
It does not matter how much we invest in Homeland Security, because we are constantly making more and more enemies. George Bush is doing everything he can to alienate people the world over. It does not matter that these people are from third world countries or that they don't have the technology we do, (think box cutters) if you build up enough hate, they will give up their lives just for a little revenge.
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