Wednesday, February 19, 2003

Marching orders

I was really surprised to hear this war veteran tell me that he wasn't too keen on the idea of going to war with Iraq. Before our conversation today, it seemed to me that many veterans are suprisingly gung-ho about going there and "defending our country's interests", a surprise mainly because I would have figured that anyone who'd actually been IN a war setting would've been precisely the last person to be enthusiastic about sending someone else into the same setting. A surprise secondly because "defending our country's interests" seems to mean fighting for oil that we really don't have a right to, and killing the country's leader without any good plan about what to do afterwards, not to mention the ethics of trying to decide that country's fate without consulting the citizens thereof. I'm sure that there are some who believe that there are strong ties between bin Laden and Hussein, but I'm not so sure that is even what this whole push towards war is about, and I'd really like to be SURE that there is a damn good reason to put our military personnel in that horrible situation. It just doesn't add up.

Back to the veteran, he had another reason for holding back support for the war. He said that Bush senior at least had military experience, but this young one, he'd never marched with our armed forces "with a gun slung over his back", and he hadn't the personal experiences his father had - and he didn't have the right to be so cavalier about sending our sons, brothers and husbands (he's of that generation that doesn't recognize that the daughters, sisters and wives are going there now, too) into war without a damn good reason. I've never marched for this country with a gun over my shoulder either, but I have to say that the vet and I were pretty much in agreement.

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