An American soldier died in Iraq today. I didn’t know him personally, but I know his cousin. She is one of my dearest friends. I have been against this war and occupation since before it began, but I have maintained my support for our troops that are there because I admire anyone who is willing to risk his or her own life for the protection of our democratic freedoms that I hold so dear.
My biggest problem with our presence in Iraq is that I don’t actually see our invasion or occupation there as a protection of anything I hold dear as an American. I strongly and wholeheartedly believe in America’s traditions of democracy, justice and freedom. I do not see, however, how the blood of American troops and the blood of Iraqis for oil defends in any way America’s democracy, justice or freedom.
The dollar and cents cost of this war is already approaching two hundred billion dollars. But what is and will be the cost of the loss of our brothers and sisters and fathers and mothers and cousins and aunts and uncles? Does anyone stop to think for one moment about the psychological damage and hurt we are doing to the family members who receive the news that their loved one has died in this war? In any war?
Not only is this war unconstitutional and an example of an extreme abuse of power by our President, but it is also against international law. This is the second Muslim nation we have invaded since 2001, nations where we have killed thousands of innocent citizens. If we are a moral and just nation and believe that every human life is of equal value, then these great mass murders in our name should shake us to our very core.
This is not a war on terrorism. We’ve been told some horrible lies. The war in Iraq is a war created to feed old Dubya’s overwhelming obsession with control of world oil supplies. As long as we continue to be dependent on rich oil reserves, our sons and daughters, our mothers and fathers, our sisters and brothers are simply not coming home.
Has anyone considered that the money we’ve spent bringing freedom and democracy to people that didn’t ask us to come and who do not want us to be there could have been used for research and development into clean and renewable energy sources that would alleviate our dependence on the Middle East? And not only could we have plowed money and resources into that, but we would have had a few billion left over to spread to every single congressional district to use for improved schools, health care programs and new job creation.
This war will be costing us far more than the life of one soldier who was the beloved cousin of my dear friend. It will be costing us far more than the lives of many soldiers who are only following the orders of our commander in chief. This war will be costing us for generations to come. I just can’t make sense of any of that and it makes me very angry and very, very sad.