FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail

A Visit From St. Barack

‘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

More articles by:

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).

January 21, 2019
W. T. Whitney
New US Economic Attack Against Cuba, Long Threatened, May Hit Soon
Jérôme Duval
Macronist Repression Against the People in Yellow Vests
Dean Baker
The Next Recession: What It Could Look Like
Eric Mann
All Hail the Revolutionary King: Martin Luther King and the Black Revolutionary Tradition
Binoy Kampmark
Spy Theories and the White House: Donald Trump as Russian Agent
Edward Curtin
We Need a Martin Luther King Day of Truth
Bill Fried
Jeff Sessions and the Federalists
Ed Corcoran
Central America Needs a Marshall Plan
Colin Todhunter
Complaint Lodged with European Ombudsman: Regulatory Authorities Colluding with Agrochemicals Industry
Manuel E. Yepe
The US War Against the Weak
Weekend Edition
January 18, 2019
Friday - Sunday
Melvin Goodman
Star Wars Revisited: One More Nightmare From Trump
John Davis
“Weather Terrorism:” a National Emergency
Jeffrey St. Clair
Roaming Charges: Sometimes an Establishment Hack is Just What You Need
Joshua Frank
Montana Public Schools Block Pro-LGBTQ Websites
Louisa Willcox
Sky Bears, Earth Bears: Finding and Losing True North
Robert Fisk
Bernie Sanders, Israel and the Middle East
Robert Fantina
Pompeo, the U.S. and Iran
David Rosen
The Biden Band-Aid: Will Democrats Contain the Insurgency?
Nick Pemberton
Human Trafficking Should Be Illegal
Steve Early - Suzanne Gordon
Did Donald Get The Memo? Trump’s VA Secretary Denounces ‘Veteran as Victim’ Stereotyping
Andrew Levine
The Tulsi Gabbard Factor
John W. Whitehead
The Danger Within: Border Patrol is Turning America into a Constitution-Free Zone
Dana E. Abizaid
Kafka’s Grave: a Pilgrimage in Prague
Rebecca Lee
Punishment Through Humiliation: Justice For Sexual Assault Survivors
Dahr Jamail
A Planet in Crisis: The Heat’s On Us
John Feffer
Trump Punts on Syria: The Forever War is Far From Over
Dave Lindorff
Shut Down the War Machine!
Glenn Sacks
LA Teachers’ Strike: Student Voices of the Los Angeles Education Revolt  
Mark Ashwill
The Metamorphosis of International Students Into Honorary US Nationalists: a View from Viet Nam
Ramzy Baroud
The Moral Travesty of Israel Seeking Arab, Iranian Money for its Alleged Nakba
Ron Jacobs
Allen Ginsberg Takes a Trip
Jake Johnston
Haiti by the Numbers
Binoy Kampmark
No-Confidence Survivor: Theresa May and Brexit
Victor Grossman
Red Flowers for Rosa and Karl
Cesar Chelala
President Donald Trump’s “Magical Realism”
Christopher Brauchli
An Education in Fraud
Paul Bentley
The Death Penalty for Canada’s Foreign Policy?
David Swanson
Top 10 Reasons Not to Love NATO
Louis Proyect
Breaking the Left’s Gay Taboo
Kani Xulam
A Saudi Teen and Freedom’s Shining Moment
Ralph Nader
Bar Barr or Regret this Dictatorial Attorney General
Jessicah Pierre
A Dream Deferred: MLK’s Dream of Economic Justice is Far From Reality
Edward J. Martin
Glossip v. Gross, the Eighth Amendment and the Torture Court of the United States
Chuck Collins
Shutdown Expands the Ranks of the “Underwater Nation”
Paul Edwards
War Whores
FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail