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Don’t Bad Mouth American Soldiers

Here is an email I received in response to one of my essays.

Don’t Bad Mouth American Soldiers : Melanie Bassler : : 2008-05-21

Hi, my name is Melanie and I saw some of your pictures from the war in Iraq and read some of what you wrote. I agree wholeheartedly with everything you wrote except, of course, your comments about Americans. You mentioned our hatred for others and us being racist when you came off the same when toward Americans. That is however, the only problem I had with what I read. I didn’t email you to say anything horrible or threatening. You might be surprised but many Americans feel the same way you do about Bush and the war. I know that everyone I have ever talked to since the war has started hates Bush. In a heartbeat, I would sacrifice his life for any of the American soldiers who have died in the war. He is evil and I think everyone knows it now and has for a long time, but for us citizens we have no say in anything. A president is supposed to represent the voice of the people but that is not what is happening here. We have no say in anything except, of course, putting him in the position he is in as president and even that, I am doubtful. Like I read on your website about elections, I don’t see how it takes that long to tally the votes. He has lied to the American people since day 1. After Sept. 11th, Bush used the fear of America to start his one man war. No one really did understand why he attacked Iraq when everyone was told and believed it was Bin Laden who was the culprit. Bush is spending so much time killing innocent woman and children in Iraq that he hasn’t bothered to track down Bin Laden. That is the head the American people want. We didn’t have any problems with Iraq and Hussein.

You talked bad about American soldiers and I see how you feel that way but I believe that all these kids (and that is who is going over to Iraq, kids) do not really know how it is over there. Everytime I hear about another American casualty it is usually a 20 year old kid. If you listen to the ones who come back though, many of their views have changed. I’ve seen many soldiers come back and say it wasn’t what they thought it was. They didn’t know whom they were fighting or even why?

I have seen the pictures you have posted and they are real eye openers. If I could have one wish, it would be to blow up all the pictures on your site and put them up on all the walls of the White House, (and all the buildings and houses of the people of this country who still believe in this war) and have them have to look at the every day, from the moment they wake up until they go to sleep. They are all ignorant of what is going on over there and even worse, they don’t care, as long as it’s not them. I would love to see one of their kids join the military and fight. They couldn’t have that could they? It would be hitting too close to home for them wouldn’t it? Don’t get me wrong, I am an American and I love my country, but does that mean I have to have the same beliefs of the leaders of this country? Especially when they are wrong? We are not allowed to voice our opinions in this supposed free world of ours. But I don’t blame the majority of the country, it is the minority who have all the power and abuse each and every day. I hope that next year’s elections and I pray, believe me when I say I pray that we will can finally get someone in office that can stop the atrocities that have been taking place for almost 5 years now. Thank you for your time and I hold no ill will toward you for your beliefs, I can’t blame you for them, you have only formed these beliefs through the actions of the devil who is leading our nation.


The invasion and occupation of Iraq is illegal.
~ Kofi Annan (1938-04-08 age:80)Secretary General and Boutros Boutros-Ghali (1922-11-14 2016-02-16 age:93) former Secretary General of the U.N.
I think in this case international law stood in the way of doing the right thing.
~ Richard Perle (1941-09-16 age:76), 2003-11-20, Pentagon hawk, cat-stroking, Ernst Stavro Blofeld, James Bond villain pasty lookalike, admitting the Iraq war is illegal.
The main area I cross swords with the American left is the esteem with which they hold soldiers. Prominent left wingers like Al Franken laud the soldiers and even go on tours to entertain them. To me they are the scum of the earth. They are fully equivalent to other people to commit capital crimes such as murder and child rape. They are criminals, openly guilty of a capital crime. They deserve to be treated with the same degree of respect you would give other death-row criminals, not treated as more heroic than firefighters. Inside the USA, it is political suicide to acknowledge these crimes, so even anti-war candidates like Barak Obama and Hillary Clinton pretend to engage in this almost worship of serial killers.

All the American soldiers volunteered. They knew full well what a dirty war was going on in Iraq and that the motives for the war were bogus. They went mainly because they wanted a chance to torture, hunt humans and rape with impunity. They are the furthest things from heroes I could imagine. I find it utterly baffling that Americans treat as heroes the hit men while simultaneously condemning the mob bosses who select their targets.

To me, what is happening in the USA is identical to what happened in Nazi Germany. A sadistic and corrupt leadership shreaded the constitution and lead the country off into illegal aggression and the bulk of the population were swept eagerly along on a tide of pomp and patriotism. We don’t laud Nazi soldiers for following orders. We didn’t let them off the hook. We held them personally responsible for their crimes. America should be no different.

In ordinary life, we blame the person who commits a crime, not the person who suggests he commit it. You are presumed to make up you own mind about whether to commit a crime. Hitler did not kill anyone. He asked others to. Had they refused, he could have done no damage at all. So I blame the soldiers even more than Hitler. They are the ones who actually committed the violence.

Never ascribe to malice, that which can be explained by incompetence.
~ Napoléon Bonaparte (1769-08-15 1821-05-05 age:51)
Hugh Thompson, helped block the Mai Lai massacre
Hugh Thompson, helped block the Mai Lai massacre

Let us say we give the soldier the benefit of the doubt. Let us presume he had the IQ (Intelligence Quotient) of a mature Holstein and believed various rumours, e.g. Saddam was alive and well and about to nuke Hoboken. He naïvely signed up to save America. When he got to Iraq, it would become impossible to hold onto many of the lies he had been told. Now what? You, Melanie, excuse him, if like a good Nazi, he continues to follow orders and kill people he knows full well are innocent. I don’t. I expect him to follow in the footsteps of Lt. Ehren Watada and simply refuse to continue killing and endure the court martial. That is the penalty for being leaping into a life of crime with eyes glued shut.

Universal Soldier

© Caleb Music-ASCAP written and performed by Buffy Sainte-Marie.
I wrote Universal Soldier in the basement of The Purple Onion coffee house in Toronto in the early sixties. It’s about individual responsibility for war and how the old feudal thinking kills us all.
~ Buffy Sainte-Marie (1941-02-20 age:77)
Donovan (1946-05-10 age:71) had a hit with it in 1965.

He’s five feet two and he’s six feet four
He fights with missiles and with spears
He’s all of 31 and he’s only 17
He’s been a soldier for a thousand years

He’s a Catholic, a Hindu, an atheist, a Jain,
a Buddhist and a Baptist and a Jew
and he knows he shouldn’t kill
and he knows he always will
kill you for me my friend and me for you

And he’s fighting for Canada,
he’s fighting for France,
he’s fighting for the USA,
and he’s fighting for the Russians
and he’s fighting for Japan,
and he thinks we’ll put an end to war this way

And he’s fighting for Democracy
and fighting for the Reds
He says it’s for the peace of all
He’s the one who must decide
who’s to live and who’s to die
and he never sees the writing on the walls

But without him how would Hitler have
condemned him at Dachau
Without him Caesar would have stood alone
He’s the one who gives his body
as a weapon to a war
and without him all this killing can’t go on

He’s the universal soldier and he
really is to blame
His orders come from far away no more
They come from him and you and me
and brothers can’t you see
this is not the way we put an end to war.

My Beef With Americans

My other complaint with the American left is the anaemic protest they have put up. It is nothing like the vigour of the opposition to the Viet Nam war. The Iraq war, with its routine torture and white phosphorus, is even more morally repugnant than the Viet Nam War. Americans, apparently, will only protest when there is a draft and their personal butts are on the line. Countries all over the world have put up much more of a stink.

You can read the pro-war sentiments in some of the emails people have sent me that I published and on newsgroups. The question is, why have Americans as a whole gone along so meekly with Bush and the Iraq war? The motives of the average American are not those of the White House. The motives of the average American are racist hatred of Muslims and Arabs. Can you discover any other motive powerful enough to make the nation tolerate this war so long? You might say on possibilty is a paranoid fear of an unarmed, destitute nation 1/12 the size of the USA seeking revenge for the brutality the USA had rained on it. Hardly credible. It would be like a mugger with a paranoid fear of old ladies.

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