Letter to the Future. VIII - Your History of War

11 July 2010

Your History of War

To Future,
I don't know which stories from the current Iraq war will look at you from your history books.  I hope, beyond anything else, that two messages are afforded you by the historians of your time.  Firstly, I hope that someone tells you the story of the people living, patrolling, defending and invading the neighborhoods where the bombs dropped, where manipulated intelligence meant dead loved ones, meant food insecurity, meant multiple tours, meant a more deeply hated America and a more fortified al Qaeda. 
I hope there are pictures of children without their brothers, villages without their leaders, soldiers without guidance leaning on each other knowing, certainly, only their love of country, albeit a love confused by the absence of their highest command's coherence and thoughtful collaboration.  If there is a picture to depict the depth of infection a decapitated and clumsy occupation inflicts in its victims - foreign and domestic - I hope that picture rides the title page of this chapter.

Secondly, though, in the luxurious calm of cold analysis, I hope these authors also recall why the bombs dropped, why young boys were left brotherless, why soldiers were asked to lose their limbs and fly their flag, why in an effort to dethrone the unholy, seated in the power places of perverted sanctity, we put the fatwah pen to the paper for thousands more.  We didn't ask enough questions, Future, we failed to grasp that the discretionary void brought about by our post-9/11 paranoia would mean the misery of millions and the reckless thrust of our uniformed men and women into the sinking sand of quagmire.  We, the people, allowed our government to commit government's cardinal sin.  They compromised the interests of the people in order to serve a pocket agenda; we allowed them into the room of impunity from which they dictated resolute negligence. 

And my judgement shouldn't suffice for you.  But neither should you swallow the pill so cunningly labeled "patriot."  Read for yourself the history of this embattled time.  Keeping at arm's length an ethic of distrust, forge and fire the questions that history begs you ask and ensure that government, looking from its elevated post to predict the consequence of its rule, sees a populace patriot enough to defy their leadership, decidely criminal, if that leadership should lose purchase on its better judgement. 

Talk down one another's fears, exalt your intuitions toward goodness, embrace the power of knowing and be wary of those that cannot imagine defeat.  Graduate from our ineptitude and understand that these grounds, no matter their color, will remain stained with blood letted in blind haste.  Ask your questions.  Be well, live free.

- erik in the past

No comments:

Post a Comment