oh and i'm not saying that i don't support the troops. god yes i do. i don't support bush. never have. never ever will. i don't support the war. but i lend my support to the troops so they can do their job and do what they have been told to do. i appreciate all that they have ever done for me. and i SUPPORT our troops. so bring them home georgie boy.
one more thing. if you have time or if you even finished reading this entry, read these things written by soldiers themselves.
Zachary Scott-Singley, currently serving as a translator in Iraq, has a blog. Here's one of his recent posts:
There are battles which need to be fought and there are battles which serve no good purpose. Afghanistan and Bin Laden lay forgotten as if they were discarded toys left by a spoiled child.
Iraq is the new frontier of poor foreign policy and poor planning. Even the soldiers can see it. Why do you think nobody is re-enlisting? They don't want to keep leaving their families to go fight a losing battle and to die for an empty promise. The promise that somehow staying in Iraq makes America safer.
We have created a martyr factory here, and we are beginning to wade through the next Vietnam. How wrong do you want to be before you close down shop and send the troops home? 2,000 dead? Is that wrong enough? How about 10,000?
There is a field back home at Ft. Stewart, Georgia. There a tree has been planted for each soldier who has been killed in Iraq. After we returned in 2003 there were only a few trees, now an entire side of the field is full of them. My sister asked where they would plant more now that the row was complete and sadly I replied, "we still have three more sides to fill." Maybe then when we have enough names for a beautiful war memorial we can leave Iraq.
Another soldier's blog, Fight to Survive, offers very blunt observations about Iraq that some of his fellow soldiers do not appreciate, but the soldier makes no apologies for trying to get the American people to understand what is happening in Iraq:
I simply ignore some of the hateful comments we receive on this site, I have decided this time the integrity of Fight To Survive needed to be defended against what appears to be an unchecked, right winged jingoistic agenda.
What I find to be commonplace is the people who label me a traitor, call me a coward, and then accuse me of sedition are always the misinformed, close minded, naïve and ignorant soldiers who have been deceived by their chain of command, from the President all the way down to the lowest level, into believing in a twisted cause to establish a world police force across the globe under the guise of a war against terrorism.
I have received cynical and even very hateful criticism for as long as I have written on this website. It has never deterred my train of thought nor has it frustrated me. By receiving hateful comments is how I know I am doing my part to bring some level of consciousness to the table.
While I was in the army I was labeled a problem simply because I did not believe in the war, and I was vocal about it. What I cannot fathom is the soldiers out there who not only cannot see the obvious truths of this war, but actually get angry when they know of one who disagrees with the military and government's war-gospel. I never could understand how anyone involved with the Iraqi OCCUPATION could whole-heartedly support it. The foul machinations behind it should be crystal clear, but then again military brain washing is rampant and seems to affect everyone with a myopic scope of reality.
When I was finally caught for my writing in November of last year, the Command Sergeant Major wanted to court-marshal me under his firm belief that what I was writing was "aiding and embedding the enemy". However, a court-marshal was not possible after our written material was sent through military intelligence and came back clean. You see, my intentions are not to help the Iraqi insurgency but only to raise the awareness of what I went through and what I saw during Operation Iraqi Freedom II.
I do not regret anything I have written, but I do wish to make one thing clear. CPL Mathew Shelberg made a very valid point when he asked, "In what areas of the country did you serve to have "never once saw a terrorist with extreme inclinations for senseless bloodshed"? Does targeting Shia civilians with car bombs count as "extreme" in your eyes? Are the "angry farmers and shop keepers" the people who manufacture the car bombs that have slain thousands of innocent Iraqis?".
My year of combat from February 2004 through February 2005 was spent with 3rd Brigade, 1st Infantry Division in Baquba, Iraq--centralized in the Sunni Triangle--35 miles northeast of Baghdad. I specifically remember two weeks in the month of July where our sector had the most car bomb attacks in all of Iraq. So I do know the maniacal savagery that was wreaked because of the insurgency's tactics.
I wish to correct myself by not recognizing car bomb attacks, or any attack that would kill or maim innocent civilians, as indeed an act of terrorism. It is very true that acts of terrorism are occurring in the war in Iraq. But what I would like to make clear is that our involvement in this war is like trying to extinguish a lit match with gasoline. I do not see how terrorism can be snubbed out using conventional warfare. Some of the insurgents' attacks such as suicide bombers, car bombs, and arbitrary assassinations are unfortunately taking the lives of innocent civilians. This is always wrong. But what needs to be understood is the primary targets of these violent acts are either the Iraqi forces that we empowered or the US military presence exclusively. The Iraqi insurrection, in itself, is what I believe to be an honest rebellion. Because it is a guerrilla war against an illegal occupation enforced by our conventional military force, with far superior weapons and technology, it seems obvious that acts of terrorism are also acts of desperation. One would have to study terrorism for what it is: political violence or the threat of violence, especially bombing, kidnapping, and assassination, carried out for political purposes. One would have to wonder why international factions of terrorist cells, especially those located in the Middle East, would target the people of America. But what is commonly ignored is the role the United States government takes in aggravating terrorist acts through our hegemonic stranglehold on those regions of the world. With no other means to attract world attention for the economic desperation these third-world regions face, and no way to effectively counter a military superpower, it is no wonder these extremist factions choose terrorism to fight back. Is it right? Certainly not, but then again, neither are economic sanctions and the corporate subsidization of localized goods (oil) and services that our government is notorious for generating. Terrorism should never be accepted by any rational person or society and is certainly an immoral act, but to say that the US government is clean of all responsibility of terrorism is very naïve. Like Noam Chomsky says, "The best way to end terrorism is to stop participating in it."
I never meant to deny the presence of terrorist acts in Iraq, and I apologize for not making myself clearer in this manner. I just grow more and more aggravated every day listening to George W. Bush spout out loads of propaganda bullshit convincing this country to live a life of absolute xenophobic fear, and using that word "TERRORISM" to do it. Just the word "TERRORISM" has become derogatory. Sure, terrorism does exist in our society, much like it has been prevalent throughout human history. However, to use this natural fear to control the masses of people is irresponsible and wrong. Because of the Bush Administration, we are now locked into a new "Red Scare", where the draconian standards of the Patriot Act are absolute dogma and unchecked racism and bigotry can run amuck. A new era of McCarthyism is at the threshold of the freedoms and liberties that makes this country so great. The future is always uncertain, but in these menacing times, with an all-powerful fascist oligarch posing under the banner of Jesus and the American Way of Life, there seems to be little hope for a sane and rational tomorrow.
So for some of you brainwashed idiots out there who would dare to accuse me of cowardice and treason, I say this: How dare you point the finger! I am not the enemy, as I have honorably served this country and did everything in my power to serve and defend the Constitution of the United States. I believe whole heartedly in the great monument of mankind this country could be if only it were not managed by thieves and crooks. The American people are among the most noble and kind-hearted and decent in all the world, which is why we should never let our current deranged government run out of control.
I must admit that your frequent use of the word "sedition" both surprises and humors me. That must be a big word for you. Did you happen to read it somewhere, or was its terrorist connotation ever so monotonously drilled into your head in boot camp? Perhaps you removed a "seditious" leader in Level 7 of your new Tom Clancy shoot'm up video game. Whatever the case may be, perhaps you have a valid point. Webster's defines the act of sedition as "rebellion or incitement: actions or words intended to provoke or incite rebellion against government authority." If what you are saying means that I am accused of opposing this current and criminal regime, and desperately hope for swift and drastic change, well...at least you used the word right.
When I joined the United States Army I swore an oath to "serve and protect the Constitution of the United States", not an ignorant greedy little fuck like George Bush or any of his court jesters in the White House. And by writing and speaking against his policies and his war and his grossly high death tolls, I know in my heart that I am still, to this day, fighting to protect all the constitutional rights that his administration is robbing from us everyday.
So where do you fit in as a soldier in the United States military? Are you just a hired gun, a hit man, robbing profit and power from impoverished third world countries? How can you sleep at night knowing that perhaps a stray bullet fired from your gun blew the brains out of an innocent baby or mother only a few clay buildings away? Do you call that war? Do you call that right? If you can disprove the experiences that I have shared with readers of this site, than do it. I fucking dare you. Because I know what I have said at times can be emotional or raw, but it is always right and true. If you are too ignorant or blind to see the realities of this war, there may still be some hope left for you to learn. If you honestly support the decisions of your officers and your commander-in-chief, than you honestly support the war that has killed over one hundred thousand innocent Iraqi civilians and almost two-thousand fellow soldiers. If it is this illegitimate war and death that you honestly support, than I feel sorry for you, for you are surely no better than the criminals in the White House who are truly responsible for holding the smoking gun.
And to try to discredit me as a "scumbag pogue" who never saw combat will do you no good. I was a 19 delta reconnaissance scout in a cavalry scout platoon, a combat MOS that not one of you automated brainwashed grunts can deny. My job was no different than yours in many ways. If you even bothered to read the rest of this website you would surely understand that the authors of this site have seen our fair share. We didn't just pull this out of our collective asses, we actually experienced it. Just because you don't believe it doesn't mean it didn't happen. And unlike you, not every soldier in Iraq is proud of the blood on his hands.
I hope someday you find solace for the orders you have had to execute, for the carnage you helped take part in, and for the pride you wear supporting this bloodbath. Until then, you can only hope for an epiphany, something that stands out as completely immoral, that convinces you of the inhumanity of this war. I don't know how much more proof you need. The criminal outrage of Abu Gharib, the absolute massacre of Fallujah, the stray .50 caliber bullets or 40 millimeter grenades or tank rounds fired in highly packed urban areas, five hundred pound bombs dropped on innocent homes, the use of 25 millimeter depleted uranium rounds, the inhumane use of white phosphorus, the hate and the blood and the misunderstandings...this is the war and the system that you support. If you choose to be that programmed automaton that will follow along in this debacle like a lemming off a cliff, than the real pity should be on you.
and that my friends is my rant of the day. peace out.