Why We’re Against It

The Gun Toting Liberal has an absolutely touching piece up today, reminding us about the stories forgotten in the disaster that is Iraq. This one in particular is a tough one to handle, the story of possibly the most wounded soldier to come back from Iraq without actually dying.

Shot in the back of the head, Joseph Briseno Jr. lost his sight, suffered brain damage, and now his family has put themselve in the “poorhouse” giving him care.

It’s a story he (GTL) wants to put back into the public consciousness, and least I can do is to help.

What also struck me about the post was his convictions on why he’s against the war:

When people ask my why I oppose the war in Iraq I can only point to stories such as Briseno’s. Thanks in part to a 15 to 1 survival to death rate among or injured troops long after this war is done and forgotten Mr. Briseno and those like him will bear the scars of our mistake. They will continue to pay the price for our hubris long after the world has moved on, and for that I am ashamed.

I am ashamed because no matter how much we do, no matter how much I personally give, nothing will ever make up for what has happened to these brave men and women. THIS is the price we are paying to enmesh ourselves into a religious civil war. THIS is the price being paid because we are too proud to admit that we SCREWED UP. THIS is what happens when we delude ourselves into thinking that we can fix everything, and that no matter the cost it will come out well in the end.

It got me to thinking. I’m an avid horse race junkie, and in so many ways Iraq has become just another political football. If you asked me why I oppose the war in Iraq, I have about a million patent answers, but what GTL reminded me is that it’s so much more personal than blogging, than the debate we have every day. It is ever so much more.

I’ve always been against war. I remember telling my mom, when I was a little kid, I couldn’t ever join the military because I just didn’t understand war. I couldn’t fathom it. Why? Why kill each other? So I was wrong about the joining the military thing, but being against war… That has never changed.

I don’t believe in war. For me, it’s a LAST RESORT. And I don’t mean last resort as in Saddam-Hussein-lives-in-your-neighborhood-and-starts-killing-your-neighbors-so-we-have-to-kill-him-first analogy kind of last resort. I’m talking HOLY-SHIT-THEY-JUST-ATTACKED-PEARL-HARBOR!!! last resort or OH-MY-GOD-SOMEONE-JUST-FLEW-PLANES-INTO-THE-WTC-AND-PENTAGON!!! last resort. And even then, I would wish there was another way.

I see footage of a mother, broken, finding pieces of her children in the rubble of a destroyed building she once called home and it KILLS me. WHY? Why do we do this?

I think, whenever two nations war with each other, how many of these people are simply trying to provide for their families? All these people who have no stake in the battles raging about them, just trying to live, to raise their children, peddle their craft, and carve out some sort of life in a world that is already cruel enough without war.

And it’s so insanely stupid! We find so many excuses to do this to each other, and at the heart, most of us are just trying to get by. But someone gets pissed at someone else, somewhere a line is crossed, and we’re sending our young off to fight battles for us. We’re uprooting lives, destroying them, and for what? A thought? An idea? A book? An icon?

It’s bullshit. There’s nothing masculine in waging war, there’s no glory in it. Whether picking a fight in a schoolyard, or launching massive military operations, there’s no honor in it. Violence is failure. It is failure to rise above our few differences and realize that, hell, it’s in our DNA, we aren’t that different. If we’re less than a few percentage points worth of DNA different than a frog, how different can you be from your fellow man.

This isn’t anti military. I honor our troops, and find perhaps more honor in them than so many others because they fight the battles that others are too cowardly to fight. They do the dirty work, and they don’t ask questions, and they do it for love, love of their country, love of their family. But for those who wish for war… wish it for ANY reason… there is no honor in you, I cannot respect you.

There should never be glee felt when war is threatened. The decision to go to war shouldn’t hurt, or be hard, it should rip you apart inside, and yet, from the leaders of this world, I do not feel that from so many of them.

So I can’t be for war, you see? Because the most basic question, the one that tears me up inside when I think on it too hard, has never been answered… Why?

In keeping with this, for all who read this post, I want you to do me a favor. I want you to put politics away for a minute, just a minute, and ask yourself how you feel about war, the war in Iraq, any war. Look inside yourself, and find that reason for or against. If you want to share, I got an open comments section, but you don’t have to. I just want you to remember, before you go back out there to play this game of politics we play every day.

Edit: Just a note, I got so taken up with the post, I skipped the biline. Just to make sure the right person gets credited, the author was Dustin. Sorry D.

Note: Gonna leave this post up at the top for today, for newer articles, please scroll down.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Connect with Facebook