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"So long as America's leaders have no reason to fear war, there will be no peace."

Reasonable deaths in a nonsense war

by Helen Highwater

America stands on the brink of what's being billed as a war, but nobody in the US seems worried about what might happen if Iraq defeats America. Nobody's speculating about the terms Saddam Hussein might dictate for GW Bush's surrender. There is absolutely no possibility of somber CNN reports as Iraqi troops march into Washington DC, seizing ultimate control of this nation. We're not afraid of what life would be like for Americans, under the brutal Hussein occupation of America. The US military isn't being deployed to defend Boston, Newark, Philadelphia, and New York from invading Iraqi bombers.

Do you know why?

Because America is in no danger from Iraq.

In fact, absolutely nothing is at stake for Americans in this "war," except the lives of a few US soldiers who'll be killed in transport accidents and machinery malfunctions, and the very, very few who'll be killed by Iraqi forces.

When American soldiers are placed in harm's way, Americans ought to know why. When American troops kill and die, the reasons should be sound, easy to understand, and easy to stand behind.

So long as the United States continues to attack only nations which can't really battle back — Iraq and Afghanistan, not China and Russia — there will be few American casualties, and thus no reason for American leaders to explain why.

When we're finished slaughtering Iraqis, flags will fly in America and fireworks will soar. And after the parades, America's leaders will settle into the work of planning the next war that can't conceivably be lost.

A war where one nation cannot conceivably win and the other nation cannot conceivably lose is not a "war." Calling it a "war" is an insult to anyone who ever fought in any real war.

It's like calling gang rape a "romance." Well, America is not "romancing" Iraq, nand there isn't ever going to be a "war" between these countries. It's a slaughter.

Such a slaughter, however, carries only monetary cost for America's leadership. With few American casualties, and no coverage or concern about "enemy" dead, there's no political cost. Which means there's no need to hesitate — before, after, or between such slaughters.

So the slaughters, the nonsense wars will continue.

To America's leaders, dead American soldiers mean a somber-faced photo-op before playing a round of golf. Nothing raises a president's poll standings faster, after all, than the deaths of a few American soldiers in any action anywhere.


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Helen is an awesome writer...
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