I’d like to know the origin of the notion that killing people solves problems. Maybe it’s a way of creating a scapegoat, or perhaps it’s just a way of blowing off steam. It could be that they have something that we want, or our desire to round up all of our problems and dump them on someone else. But it seems to me that the value of human life is being overlooked and ignored when four thousand three hundred and ninety seven American troops have been killed in Iraq, and we’re still there. Don’t you read that number and shudder?
Politicians will give us the same answers: we need to think about the “bigger picture”. If we leave, the country will be worse off. They need us there. We need to finish what we started. Well, WE’RE KILLING THEM, AND THEY’RE KILLING US. What’s productive about that? What’s holy about that? What’s honorable about that?
History repeats itself; war and its motives are always the same. Bob Dylan had it right in 1963, when he wrote “Masters of War”:
You that never done nothin’
But build to destroy
You play with my world
Like it’s your little toy
You put a gun in my hand
And you hide from my eyes
And you turn and run farther
When the fast bullets fly.
If the “bigger picture” is all you can see, then it’s time for you to look closer. Question: before today (when President Obama met with President Karzai), when was the last time you read an article about either war? Or thought about them? Maybe it’s a war over oil, or maybe it’s a war over ideology, or a war over terrorism, or over a son’s desire to impress his dad, or maybe just a war over patriotism. But regardless of its epithet, it’s still a war. Imagine, for a day, everyone used the term “bloody killing spree” instead of “war.” What effect would that have on the world?
Alas, war exists, and while it exists, it is our responsibility to support our troops– wherever they may be. And the best way to support our troops?
Bring. Them. Home.