• Monthly
  • $25
  • $50
  • $100
  • $other
  • use PayPal

SPRING FUNDRAISER

Is it time for our Spring fundraiser already? If you enjoy what we offer, and have the means, please consider donating. The sooner we reach our modest goal, the faster we can get back to business as (un)usual. Please, stay safe and we’ll see you down the road.
FacebookTwitterRedditEmail

Mourning Iraq

Please don’t talk to me of “precision bombing” and “liberation.” Don’t talk of “minimal loss of life” and cheering Iraqis. Don’t come with your “I told you so.” and your “See, the war wasn’t that bad.”

Because I know better. I know there was little that was precise and liberating about this war. I know while many Iraqis are thrilled to be done with Saddam; they are equally appalled at how this war has played out.

And what of your “I told you so”?

You said the reason we must go to war and flout international law and the UN is because Saddam has weapons of mass destruction and must be stopped. I see none, despite the attempts of the Bush administration to concoct them.

You said we must go to war despite the opposition of the majority of the peoples of the world, galvanizing many of them against us because Saddam was a threat to my safety. He is a despicable man who has done horrible things.

If he were able, he would’ve surely fought brutally. And he would’ve fought to best of his ability, which is what I imagine he did. But apparently, he was not the threat we thought he was.

So you want me to be proud that the Bush and Blair administrations have defeated a militarily impotent, awful tyrant by way of leaving countless children already weakened from over a decade of sanctions and random US bombs, motherless, homeless and limbless; leaving hospitals and relief agencies looted and depleted to the point of being ineffectual; leaving a decimated infrastructure; leaving thousands with nothing to drink but water contaminated with human waste; leaving annihilated houses and neighborhoods and shops and public spaces.

You want me to be proud of killing immeasurable numbers of men, women and children. And they will be immeasurable because the staggering power of US bombs has turned many of my fellow human beings into “pink mist,” the horrific previously-coined term used for what often remains of human life as it rises from the ground after the bombs drop. I am not proud.

I am horrified and sickened and grief-stricken.

I am grief-stricken for the American and British soldiers and their families who have suffered and who mourn injury and death and, like those from the first Gulf war, may very well suffer further from the horrible effects of depleted uranium exposure, sacrificing their quality of life for perhaps the rest of their lives over a war that never should have been. I am horrified and grief-stricken that some in our government have called Iraq a “deeply sick” society, that some of our soldiers have been indoctrinated so profoundly they have forgotten they are supposed to be liberators as they talk of hating Iraq and looking forward to “taking out” a few people, one soldier saying with chilling glibness, “The chick was in the way” in response to killing an innocent civilian woman.

I am horrified and grief-stricken that the Bush administration and the media unconscionably parade a staged photo-op, where a meager couple of hundred people were corralled to fill a cameraperson’s lens, as US marines – not Iraqis – pulled down a statue of Saddam, for all the world to see, using this a “proof” that all Iraqis unite in joyful liberation. The Bush administration knows the people of the US we will cling to this image, desperately wanting to believe it is true, trying to push what many of us know in our hearts – that this war was brutal and wrong – out of our minds.

I am grief-stricken because this photo-op is the cruel addition of insult to injury to the Iraqi people. It unflinchingly demeans their pain, and obscures their reality. Where are the photos of the rest of the millions of Iraqis?

Where are the photos of those who have been devastated by the loss of entire families, those who desperately fight one another for a looted chair, who are angry at the US for not protecting them, scrounging for food and filthy water amidst the unexploded cluster bombs and tons and tons of birth-defect causing depleted uranium, hiding in what is left of their homes, if they are lucky, terrified, shell-shocked, and worn?

I am horrified by the colossal hypocrisy of the Bush administration that uses the US-orchestrated voices of a couple of hundred people as ultimate proof of the goodness of this war, yet when millions upon millions of people around the world raised their voices in protest for months on end, Bush relegated them to an inconsequential “focus group.”

I am horrified and saddened that the media at times prints grossly misleading polls, saying the majority of Americans are for the war, using sample sizes that wouldn’t be considered representative in any credible scientific study. (One major paper, for example, stated 63% of the people of an area with over 6.7 million were for the war. They polled 204 people.) Polls are used to manipulate opinion, not quantify it.

I am horrified and saddened further at how the media has perpetuated the ridiculously simplistic and false assertion that opposing the war equals lack of concern for the troops. Those of us who have voiced our opposition to the war are concerned for the safety and welfare of all involved, including the troops.

And we know it is absurd to state otherwise.

I am sickened, yet not surprised, that of all the looting of all the buildings that has turned Baghdad into a free-for-all, one of the only places the US forces guarded with any real effort was the Ministry of Oil.

And I am horrified and grief-stricken over the complete pillaging and destroying of a museum beyond price that housed precious, irreplaceable artifacts from the birth of human civilization. A museum that held reminders that you and I and those the Bush and Blair administrations have killed for no justifiable reason are ultimately descended from the same human cradle.

So, please don’t talk to me fortified with TV network slogans and easily evoked sound bites because, like millions around the world, I know better. Come ready to engage in a true dialogue, with well-reasoned facts gotten from outside as well as inside the US. And please, speak in tones reserved for respect for the dead and the grieving. Because along with much of the world; I am in mourning.

CAROL NORRIS is a writer and psychotherapist. She is a member of CODEPINK: Women for Peace. She can be contacted at writing4justice@planet-save.com.

 

 

 

More articles by:

Carol Norris is a psychotherapist, freelance writer, and longtime political activist.

June 02, 2020
Binoy Kampmark
Sinister Flatulence: Trump Versus Twitter
John Stanton
How Much Violence and Destruction is Enough for Depraved American Leaders and Their Subjects?
Thomas Knapp
Trump’s “Free Speech:” Doctrine: Never, Ever, Ever Mention He’s a Liar
John W. Whitehead
This Is Not a Revolution. It’s a Blueprint for Locking Down the Nation
June 01, 2020
Joshua Frank
It’s a Class War Now Too
Richard D. Wolff
Why the Neoliberal Agenda is a Failure at Fighting Coronavirus
Henry Giroux
Racial Domestic Terrorism and the Legacy of State Violence
Ron Jacobs
The Second Longest War in the United States
Kanishka Chowdhury
The Return of the “Outside Agitator”
Lee Hall
“You Loot; We Shoot”
Dave Lindorff
Eruptions of Rage
Jake Johnston
An Impending Crisis: COVID-19 in Haiti, Ongoing Instability, and the Dangers of Continued U.S. Deportations
Nick Pemberton
What is Capitalism?
Linda G. Ford
“Do Not Resuscitate”: My Experience with Hospice, Inc.
Medea Benjamin - Nicolas J. S. Davies
Who Are the Secret Puppet-Masters Behind Trump’s War on Iran?
Manuel García, Jr.
A Simple Model for Global Warming
Howard Lisnoff
Is the Pandemic Creating a Resurgence of Unionism? 
Frances Madeson
Federal Prisons Should Not be Death Chambers
Hayley Brown – Dean Baker
The Impact of Upward Redistribution on Social Security Solvency
Raúl Carrillo
We Need a Public Option for Banking
Kathy Kelly
Our Disaster: Why the United States Bears Responsibility for Yemen’s Humanitarian Crisis
Sonali Kolhatkar
An Open Letter to Joe Biden on Race
Scott Owen
On Sheep, Shepherds, Wolves and Other Political Creatures
John Kendall Hawkins
All Night Jazz All The Time
Weekend Edition
May 29, 2020
Friday - Sunday
Tim Wise
Protest, Uprisings, and Race War
Nick Pemberton
White Supremacy is the Virus; Police are the Vector
T.J. Coles
What’s NATO Up to These Days? Provoking Russia, Draining Healthcare Budgets and Protecting Its Own from COVID
Benjamin Dangl
Bibles at the Barricades: How the Right Seized Power in Bolivia
Kevin Alexander Gray - Jeffrey St. Clair - JoAnn Wypijewski
There is No Peace: an Incitement to Justice
Jeffrey St. Clair
A Few Good Sadists
Jeff Mackler
The Plague of Racist Cop Murders: Ahmaud Arbery, George Floyd and the COVID-19 Pandemic
Joshua Frank
In Search of a Lost Socialism
Charles Pierson
Who are the “Wrong Hands” in Yemen?
David Schultz
Trump isn’t the Pope and This Ain’t the Middle Ages
Andrew Levine
Trump Is Unbeatable in the Race to the Bottom and So Is the GOP
Ramzy Baroud
Political Ambiguity or a Doomsday Weapon: Why Abbas Abandoned Oslo
Pam Martens - Russ Martens
A Growing Wave of Bankruptcies Threatens U.S. Recovery
Joseph Natoli
Conditions Close at Hand
N.D. Jayaprakash
No Lessons Learned From Bhopal: the Toxic Chemical Leak at LG Polymers India 
Ron Jacobs
The Odyssey of Elias Demetracopoulos
J.P. Linstroth
Arundhati Roy on Indian Migrant-Worker Oppression and India’s Fateful COVID Crisis
Melvin Goodman
Goodness Gracious, David Ignatius!!
Roger Harris
Blaming the COVID-19 Pandemic on Too Many Humans:  a Critique of Overpopulation Ideology
Sonali Kolhatkar
For America’s Wealthiest, the Pandemic is a Time to Profit
Prabir Purkayastha
U.S. Declares a Vaccine War on the World
FacebookTwitterRedditEmail