FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail

A Visit From St. Barack

by DAVE LINDORFF

‘Twas the night before Christmas and all through the land
Not a creature was stirring in Afghanistan.
The bedrooms were bunkered with piles of hard stones
To protect from attacks by the Predator drones.
The children were huddled, afraid, in their beds
While visions of night raiders danced in their heads.

Mama doffed her hijab and I doffed my hat
And we both settled down for a rest and a chat
When out in the yard their arose such a clatter,
I sprang to the door to see what was the matter.
Away to the entrance I ran ‘cross the floor,
Pulled on the handle and opened the door.

The moon hadn’t risen but up in the air
A chopper was shining a light. Such a glare!
And what to my wondering eyes did appear
But a whole gang of men, armed and dressed in black gear.
With a tall skinny guy who was wearing a pistol,
I knew in a flash: it was General McChrystal.

More rapid than eagles his raiders they rushed
And they grabbed me and trussed me and kicked, hit and pushed.
“Frisk him! Blindfold him! Remove him! Get going!
And tear up his household! See what he’s not showing!”
They frightened my wife and my kids just for kicks,
And slaughtered my goats and a half dozen chicks.

Then away they transported me up in the air
To a far-off location and I still know not where.
They duct-taped my eyes and my arms and my feet,
And left me alone in a room with no heat.

That was a Christmas some four years ago,
And I’ve been in this hellhole so long I don’t know
What my hometown still looks like. I hear it’s all rubble,
From air-raids and car bombs and other such trouble.

But yesterday morning I was told by a guard
That I’m going home soon and should not take it hard.
It was all a mistake, they just had the wrong chap, and
Since my name is Achmed, well, “These things can happen.”
Now I hear that the head of the American nation,
Obama, has ordered an Afghan escalation.
He’s sending another 34,000 men
To ramp up the effort to “help us”…again.

In the spirit of the season, he said, by the way,
That the first of these new troops will arrive Christmas Day!
This Nobel Peace Prize winner thinks it’s just great
To unleash these new killers on that special date.

He and McChrystal both claim this invasion
Is to make us all safer and to build us a nation.
But how can that be when they’re raiding our houses,
and bombing our weddings and scaring our spouses?

You attack us with drones that kill innocents daily
Send out death squads to hunt us, and lock us to jail
Leaving families to worry if we’re even living,
While you torture us, starve us and then want forgiving

When it turns out, as with me, you got the wrong guy.
And meanwhile our families were left there to die
Because no one’s around to earn money for bread.
And you wonder why people want Talibs instead?

You say you have brought us democracy? Right!
If a corrupt drug cartel counts, then maybe you might
Have a point. But I think that Karzai and his kin
Are much closer to gangsters than they are to Abe Lincoln.

Merry Christmas America! Happy New Year!
Enjoy your days off. We’re in hell over here.
But I think you will find, as this old year is ending,
That your President’s “good” war is only beginning.

DAVE LINDORFF is a Philadelphia-based journalist and columnist. His latest book is “The Case for Impeachment” (St. Martin’s Press, 2006 and now available in paperback). He can be reached at dlindorff@mindspring.com

Dave Lindorff is a founding member of ThisCantBeHappening!, an online newspaper collective, and is a contributor to Hopeless: Barack Obama and the Politics of Illusion (AK Press).

More articles by:
May 30, 2016
Deborah James
Trade Pacts and Deregulation: Latest Leaks Reveal Core Problem with TISA
Michael Donnelly
Still Wavy after All These Years: Flower Geezer Turns 80
Ralph Nader
The Funny Business of Farm Credit
Paul Craig Roberts
Memorial Day and the Glorification of Past Wars
Colin Todhunter
From Albrecht to Monsanto: A System Not Run for the Public Good Can Never Serve the Public Good
Rivera Sun
White Rose Begins Leaflet Campaigns June 1942
Tom H. Hastings
Field Report from the Dick Cheney Hunting Instruction Manual
Weekend Edition
May 27, 2016
Friday - Sunday
John Pilger
Silencing America as It Prepares for War
Rob Urie
By the Numbers: Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump are Fringe Candidates
Paul Street
Feel the Hate
Daniel Raventós - Julie Wark
Basic Income Gathers Steam Across Europe
Andrew Levine
Hillary’s Gun Gambit
Jeffrey St. Clair
Hand Jobs: Heidegger, Hitler and Trump
S. Brian Willson
Remembering All the Deaths From All of Our Wars
Dave Lindorff
With Clinton’s Nixonian Email Scandal Deepening, Sanders Must Demand Answers
Pete Dolack
Millions for the Boss, Cuts for You!
Gunnar Westberg
Close Calls: We Were Much Closer to Nuclear Annihilation Than We Ever Knew
Peter Lee
To Hell and Back: Hiroshima and Nagasaki
Karl Grossman
Long Island as a Nuclear Park
Binoy Kampmark
Sweden’s Assange Problem: The District Court Ruling
Robert Fisk
Why the US Dropped Its Demand That Assad Must Go
Martha Rosenberg – Ronnie Cummins
Bayer and Monsanto: a Marriage Made in Hell
Brian Cloughley
Pivoting to War
Stavros Mavroudeas
Blatant Hypocrisy: the Latest Late-Night Bailout of Greece
Arun Gupta
A War of All Against All
Dan Kovalik
NPR, Yemen & the Downplaying of U.S. War Crimes
Randy Blazak
Thugs, Bullies, and Donald J. Trump: The Perils of Wounded Masculinity
Murray Dobbin
Are We Witnessing the Beginning of the End of Globalization?
Daniel Falcone
Urban Injustice: How Ghettos Happen, an Interview with David Hilfiker
Gloria Jimenez
In Honduras, USAID Was in Bed with Berta Cáceres’ Accused Killers
Kent Paterson
The Old Braceros Fight On
Lawrence Reichard
The Seemingly Endless Indignities of Air Travel: Report from the Losing Side of Class Warfare
Peter Berllios
Bernie and Utopia
Stan Cox – Paul Cox
Indonesia’s Unnatural Mud Disaster Turns Ten
Linda Pentz Gunter
Obama in Hiroshima: Time to Say “Sorry” and “Ban the Bomb”
George Souvlis
How the West Came to Rule: an Interview with Alexander Anievas
Julian Vigo
The Government and Your i-Phone: the Latest Threat to Privacy
Stratos Ramoglou
Why the Greek Economic Crisis Won’t be Ending Anytime Soon
David Price
The 2016 Tour of California: Notes on a Big Pharma Bike Race
Dmitry Mickiewicz
Barbarous Deforestation in Western Ukraine
Rev. William Alberts
The United Methodist Church Up to Its Old Trick: Kicking the Can of Real Inclusion Down the Road
Patrick Bond
Imperialism’s Junior Partners
Mark Hand
The Trouble with Fracking Fiction
Priti Gulati Cox
Broken Green: Two Years of Modi
Marc Levy
Sitrep: Hometown Unwelcomes Vietnam Vets
FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail