Rather Apropos

As George is in the midst of selling another war--this time with Iran--I am saddened by the lack of public (and, in some cases, journalistic) outrage or even basic acknowledgement of the reality that this administration believes that, until the last drop, they are isolated from any iota of accountability to the public. I'm devastated by the possibility that they are quite right in believing so. I can't imagine that W. & co. (and YOU and ME and CONGRESS) will allow another country full of children (and mothers, and fathers) to live (and die) in a warzone. Did you know that 30% of Iraqi children, as of June 2007, showed symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder? See Tomdispatch's 2007 article on Iraq by the Numbers here. I remember tearing up as I read this last year. I won't even start on the state of veterans' care in the U.S. (see article at bottom of post for more on this). It seems as though the longer this war drags on, the less we hear about what it is costing us, as a global society, in human life.

So, rather apropos, here are the lyrics to one of my favorite songs by an artist I've been listening to since I was quite literally in utero, Jackson Browne's "Lives in the Balance:"

I’ve been waiting for something to happen
For a week or a month or a year
With the blood in the ink of the headlines
And the sound of the crowd in my ear
You might ask what it takes to remember
When you know that you’ve seen it before
Where a government lies to a people
And a country is drifting to war

And there’s a shadow on the faces
Of the men who send the guns
To the wars that are fought in places
Where their business interest runs

On the radio talk shows and the t.v.
You hear one thing again and again
How the U.S.A. stands for freedom
And we come to the aid of a friend
But who are the ones that we call our friends--
These governments killing their own?
Or the people who finally can’t take any more
And they pick up a gun or a brick or a stone

There are lives in the balance
There are people under fire
There are children at the cannons
And there is blood on the wire

There’s a shadow on the faces
Of the men who fan the flames
Of the wars that are fought in places
Where we can’t even say the names

They sell us the president the same way
They sell us our clothes and our cars
They sell us every thing from youth to religion
The same time they sell us our wars

I want to know who the men in the shadows are
I want to hear somebody asking them why
They can be counted on to tell us who our enemies are
But they’re never the ones to fight or to die

And there are lives in the balance
There are people under fire
There are children at the cannons
And there is blood on the wire

Also, the following links to articles on the possibility of war with Iran and the lack of focus on the cost of human life (of Americans and Iraqis alike) in Iraq may be of interest to you. Znet is a wonderful source for independent, solid journalism:

Where are those Iranian weapons in Iraq?

Where are the Iraqis in the Iraq war?

VA Debated PR Plan on Vets' Suicides


Ms. X said...

my cousin came back from Iraq emotionally catatonic. he lost custody of his kid and he can't hold down a job, and now the army "lost his medical records" so he's having an impossible time trying to get any kind of compensation.

teach people not books said...

the parents of one soldier who committed suicide are bringing a lawsuit against the VA for their refusal to treat him until he discontinued his substance abuse. gee, why might a soldier back from iraq have a substance abuse problem? curious. i suppose he was supposed to kick that habit himself, since he had the willpower and necessary support and all. it's so absolutely obscene.