May 31, 2006

Haditha

Weep, America. Stare into this mirror and weep for your sins.



Weep for your lies and your bloody murdering wars and you profound incapacity to stop yourself from endlessly repeating this murdering, pyschotic madness.

Damn you, America. Damn your poison. Damn your inflated self-esteem, which values other lives as so much less than your own. Damn your hypocrisy and your endless greed and your profound, unforgiveable carelessness.

Fuck you, America. Fuck your lazy media which never dares tell you the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth. Fuck the scum you call politicians and the corrupt farce you call Democracy. Fuck your millionaires and your billionaires and your corporate giants and the whole fucking system you foist upon this poor, suffering world.

Fuck your dumb masses, who prefer to watch ice hockey or go shopping while you export your nightmares to places they don't even know exist. Fuck the fat, lazy bastards who walk your streets but cannot even be bothered to vote, let alone change the system that makes their votes irrelevant. Fuck the superficial consumer culture you so aggressively export and the bottom-line profits you so zealously covet.

Fuck what you have done to my country and my world.

Fuck the dumb-ass fool you call a President and fuck every miserable, self-deceiving ignoramus who ever voted for him.

Fuck the lot of you, if you cannot MAKE THIS STOP!


This post has been elevated from the diaries. The following update is based on previous comments):

Fuck my country, Australia, too of course. Fuck all the bastards and bitches who voted for Howard and his ass-kissing war policies. Fuck me for not being able to stop that, and fuck this blog for being so damned ineffective.

People are being killed in cold blood because WE ARE LETTING IT HAPPEN.

All the words mean nothing if we cannot make it stop.


I am sick to death of all this death, and NOTHING REAL is being done about it. All we have is words, an endless stream of words... from bloggers, from the media, from politicians... and yet nothing REAL is being done to stop the carnage and the torture and the wire-tapping and the cronyism and all the rest.

It's time we stirred up the pot and got some changes happening, coz things can't go on the way they are.

These fuckheads killed innocent civilians in cold blood. Their behaviour is inexcusable. However, their actions must be seen in a larger context if we are to ensure this sort of massacre does not continue to occur again and again (as is happening now).

Many of these soldiers in Iraq are just kids. They come from impoverished and uneducated backgrounds, many joined up for the benefits, the pay or the education. Many just wanted to get away from wherever they were. And many never expected, or wanted, to serve abroad as armed combatants. (Others, of course, were just the usual psychotic nut-jobs who join armies all round the world.)

Most of these kids had no idea what was going on in Washington and London leading up to the invasion. They still don't. Zogby did a poll of the military in Iraq a while back which showed that 85 per cent of troops said the US mission was mainly “to retaliate for Saddam’s role in the 9/11 attacks”. Another 42% said they were not really sure what their mission in Iraq was. That's disgraceful. Now consider that many of those same kids have had their return from Iraq delayed time and time again. Many signed up for a certain length of time but have not been allowed to leave. Others thought their sevice was complete, but they were dragged back in.

They get dressed up in all kinds of gear, day after day, and go out to sweat in the hot desert sun, day after day after day. The Iraqi people are openly hostile to them. Kids throw rocks at them. People they cannot even see try to kill them with IEDs. Crowds dance on the burning corpses of their comrades when the IEDs go off.

Under these circumstances, it is HIGHLY PROBABLE that a few screws are gonna pop. More than a few, in fact. Just look at what that kind of pressure did to the kids in Vietnam. If you put kids like that under that kind of prolongued pressure - based on past experience - you simply have to EXPECT a few atrocities. Expecially when you have pro-torture psychos like Cheney and Rumsfeld calling the tune.

The soldiers who committed these atrocities in Haditha are murderers. But their aides and accomplices are in the White House.

We need some accountability. We demand some accountability!

Make. This. Stop.

20 comments:

gandhi said...

I am of course and Australian, but I have a wonderful brother-in-law who is a US citizen and a regular reader, and I am sure he will find this post personally offensive (he probably has steam coming out of his ears right now). On the other hand, as a person who is also totally dismayed with the Bush administration and the current direction of the USA, I hope he will also agree with my basic sentiments.

I know there are a load of great Americans who are doing a whole lot to stand up to the Bushites, and thank you to all of them for that, but what I am saying is that it is just not enough, as that photo of a woman with a dead baby proves.

As an Australian, there is a limit to what I can do to help bring down the Bush regime. In fact, given Bush's dismal poll numbers, I often think that I have reached the limit of what I personally can achieve through this blog, but I just don't know what else I can do.

It seems to me that the real work now needs to be done by US citizens themselves. If you are doing everything you can, great - keep it up! But if you can do more, do it now. Please! We in the rest of the world are relying on you.

Wadard said...

Speaking as an Aussie, I think you are being a bit rough mate. I would have thought your target is the presidency, not 200+ million people. You can't damn all of them for their system, just like ou can't damn all Chinese for their system. Pick your targets better.

Mack said...

The only thing I would say is if you are going to use a Michael Yon photo of an infantryman, you should at least be familiar with Michael Yon and his work. And you should probably ask his permission, as this photo is not in the public domain, and is not the property of an agency or news agency. The photo is the intellectual property of an individual who travelled and produced it on his own dollar, and I don't think he'd agree to your use.

You seem like a fair and honorable man, and though I don't necessarily agree with you, I do read you regularly and am assuming that you simply weren't aware of the origin or story behind the photo.

gandhi said...

Fuck my country too, of course. Fuck all the bastards and bitches who voted for Howard and his ass-kissing war policies. Fuck me for not being able to stop that, and fuck this blog for being so damned ineffective.

Fuck war photographers and fuck their intellectual property. People are dying, Mack.

People are being killed in cold blood because WE ARE LETTING IT HAPPEN.

All the words mean nothing if we cannot make it stop.

Mack said...

People die everyday, Gandhi. All over the world, Cote d'Ivoire, Darfur, Red China, Iran, Houston, El Paso, Phoenix, everywhere.

Robbing a working man doesn't stop it.

gandhi said...

It's all about the photo. Of course. What on earth was I thinking?

No soup for you, Mack.

gandhi said...

Climbing up on Solsbury Hill
I could see the city lights
Wind was blowing, time stood still
Eagle flew out of the night

He was something to observe
Came in close, I heard a voice
Standing stretching every nerve
Had to listen had no choice

I did not believe the information
Just had to trust imagination
My heart going boom boom boom
"Son," he said "Grab your things,
I've come to take you home."

To keep in silence I resigned
My friends would think I was a nut
Turning water into wine
Open doors would soon be shut

So I went from day to day
Tho' my life was in a rut
"Till I thought of what I'd say
Which connection I should cut

I was feeling part of the scenery
I walked right out of the machinery
My heart going boom boom boom
"Hey" he said "Grab your things
I've come to take you home."

Within illusion's bitter net
I'm never where I want to be
And liberty she pirouettes
When I think that I am free

Watched by empty silhouettes
Who close their eyes but still can see
No one taught them etiquette
I will show another me

Today I don't need a replacement
I'll tell them what the smile on my face meant
My heart going boom boom boom
"Hey" I said "You can keep my things,
they've come to take me home."

Mack said...

As a veteran, and on behalf of a small group of veterans I've stayed close to (a few of whom are in or have been to Afghanistan and Iraq)

Artist - Leon Russell
Lyrics - Tightrope

I'm up on the tightwire
one side's ice and one is fire
its a circus game with you and me
I'm up on the tightrope
one side's hate and one is hope
but the tophat on my head is all you see

And the wire seems to be
the only place for me
a comedy of errors
and I'm falling

**Chorus**
Like a rubber-neck giraffe
you look into my past
well maybe you're just to blind to - see
I'm up in the spotlight
ohh does it feel right
ohh the altitude
seems to get to me

I'm up on the tightwire
flanked by life and the funeral pyre
putting on a show
for you to see

**Chorus**
Like a rubber-neck giraffe
you look into my past
well maybe you're just too blind to - see
I'm up in the spotlight
ohh does it feel right
ohh the altitude
really gets to get to me

I'm up on the tightwire
flanked by life and the funeral pyre
putting on a show for you to see

gandhi said...

It's all about the soldiers. Of course. What on earth was I thinking?

These fuckheads killed innocent civilians in cold blood, Mack. You want to make them the victims here, do you???

Fuck that, fuck them and fuck you. What's your agenda here? You seem determined to side-track and minimize debate on this atrocity and I can't help but wonder why.

Every person who joins the military is signing away their personal judgement, acknowledging they will kill when given the order to do so. But it's still YOU who pulls the trigger, isn't it Mack? It's still YOU who sits at home, years later, staring into a bottle of booze, telling yourself that you were only following orders.

That's bullshit and you know it. And that's what hurts, right?

US soldiers in Iraq invaded a sovereign nation against international law on behalf of Bush's Global Fascist Cabal, and every Iraqi death has been murder. Of course, I will never find a majority in Bush's gun-totin' USA to agree with such a pacifist sentiment, but cold-blooded massacres like Falluja and Haditha should surely be condemned in the strongest terms by everyone, including soldiers.

gandhi said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Mack said...

Gandhi, what's going on with you? I don't care if you are openly hostile to me - I'm a big boy. Hate my guts because we don't agree, because I'm Mexican, because I am a veteran. Go ahead and use my last post as the basis for your vitriol; hate until your eyes go red and your voice cracks. Ultimately, your hatred does not burn my soul. That sincerely saddens me, but life goes on.

First, Jessie MacBethhas been completely discredited. He's a fraud, and his portrait in Ranger uniform was not even 1/2 as accurate as even the fakest Hollywood costume. I could list the problems with the uniform, but somehow I doubt you care. Take it from a veteran, he is a fraud. He most definitely not an Army Ranger.

Example: he's waering a Special Forces tab on his right shoulder (improperly)that shows he did a tour with the Special Forces. This doesn't add up when you look at other insignia on his uniform. This is not a minor point.

His story is absolutely beyond improbable and honestly, I feel sorry for the guy. Eighteen months of Ranger school! He could have at least done some Googling. Watch the news over the next few weeks regarding his story. What a black eye this is going to be for a lot of people that believed him, encouraged him and supported him. He should have at least thought about them before going through with this.

Secondly, there is no hard proof of what happened at Haditha. There are reports, but we've seen several events in the past that were characterized as massacres that somehow did not pan out that way. In the US, accused are considered innocent until proven guilty. If the evidence proves that this is a repeat of Mai Lai, I will be saddened and outraged. I'm not condemning anybody in advance, though.

I've been a regular reader for some time now - hopefully you'll remember me. I hope the best for you.

Mack

gandhi said...

Sure, Mack, he is criticising the US military so he cannot POSSIBLY be a real soldier. Hey, look! His badge is on the wrong shoulder!

BTW I knew you would say something like that about that URL but I posted it anyway. There are many other stories like it, of course: are they all fakes, Mack? If you think so, maybe you should be posting comments at ITM rather than here.

Listen. I do remember you as a long-time reader, Mack, and I do not in any way hate you.

So what's up with me? I am just sick to death of all this death, and NOTHING REAL is being done about it. All we have is words, an endless stream of words... from bloggers, from the media, from politicians... and yet nothing REAL is being done to stop the carnage and the torture and the wire-tapping and the cronyism and all the rest.

In the US, accused are considered innocent until proven guilty. If the evidence proves that this is a repeat of Mai Lai, I will be saddened and outraged. I'm not condemning anybody in advance, though.

More words. In Gitmo, of course, everyone is considered guilty and nothing ever needs to be proven, so don't give me that US WHOO HOO crap.

So what will it take to get you outraged, Mack? A full US military enquiry that finds a handful of soldiers to blame and court-martials them? Just like Abu Ghraib, right?

And yet there are countless innocent people dying across Iraq every day, Mack, many of them killed by panicked, uncaring or psychotic US troops, the others just the victims of the chaos caused by US occupation. Where is your outrage for them, Mack?

Is it OK if you just call it "collateral damage"? Is that how you vets come to terms with your consciences?

It's not OK, Mac. It's not OK.

Don't keep trying to pretend that it is.

Mack said...

Regarding Macbeth on Democratic Underground

http://tinyurl.com/sydhr

(the long URL was compressed using www.tinyurl.com)

gandhi said...

Alright, so it's all about Jessie MacBeth now, is it? Of course. Sigh...

I notice your TinyURL link includes talk than MacBeth might have been a Rove-style ploy: set up (another) fake news story (ready to de-bunk) to counter the real story, Haditha. Whatever.

It's not about Jessie MacBeth, Mack.


You constant efforts to subvert this post finally got me interested enough to go click on your blog. What a surprise. US vet living in Texas. "I AM PRO-VICTORY" link. Neil Young's new album is no good. Cindy Sheehan deserved to be thrown out of the SOTU speach for wearing a T-shirt. Yadda yadda. What a surprise.

I have to wonder what someone like that is doing reading MY blog for so long. Hmmn?

If you disagree with something I have said, why don't you address it instead of trying to dilute my argument by searching for stupid side-issues? Your technique has the all-too-familiar stench of US PsyOps and the Fighting 101st Keyboarders.

Mack said...

The Democratic Underground link was for your benefit, not mine. I didn't want to see you get caught up in the Jesse MacBeth thing; he's not real. The fact that I pointed you to Democratic Underground should be a clue that I wasn't looking to convert or twist your mind. The Democratic Underground is hardly the home of the neocon cabal; ask any of your pals here.

If I had anything to hide from you regarding who I am, I would have made up a fake Blogger ID. I've told you time and again that we will not agree on most topics of conversation, I wouldn't expect that you should be shocked at my point of view on the website.

I read you and others because I am not one who needs or desires the fake security of surrounding himself with like-minded individuals; I grew up in West Texas, but matured in NYC. I've gotten a lot of insight and read a lot of interesting people and had some great conversations with people whose politics are diametrically opposed to mine. I read some blogs that quite frankly disturb me, and where I lurk only.

I like your style of writing, I like your passion and I like the fact that you generally come from the heart. I love the fact that you cite "Solsbury Hill". I don't expect that we will always agree, but I have always felt that you are worth reading. There is no ulterior or evil motive.

I'm better than 40 years old. I'm a veteran; I know the military subculture and I know what is proper, what is probable and what is possible. Is it possible that there was a massacre at Haditha? Absolutely. But you yourself are aware of PsyOps and disinformation campaigns and have surmised enough to know that I am also aware of such things. Psyops are cheap and a very effective tool; both sides of this conflict have a psyops capability, as one should be able to recognize from AQ dispatches that read as if they were produced by an agancy, custom tailored to fit into contemporary U.S. news cycles. Most of the dispatches were well researched and contructed such that I believe that there is an intel component helping structure and direct them.

I will not condemn the Marines involved until we know how much of this is real, and how much is manufactured. It's not that I dismiss the possibility that US troops are capable of atrocities; I do not believe in the divinity or infallibility of the US military, I just think that it's a bad idea to condemn them before the investigation is complete and we have a better picture of what might have happened there. On the other hand, if you believe that the US military, a collection of about a million diverse individuals is institutionally incapable of running a military justice system, my reluctance will mean nothing to you. I understand that, but can't change who I am based on every site I visit.

I don't know what the 101st Fighting Keyboards is; in context I'm assuming that it a fair sight less than a complement. It's late, and I'm tired. Look, my aim is not to make the story go away or stifle you in any way. I'm not trying to change the subject or "bury the truth"; you brought up Jesse MacBeth and threw his quote in my face. I'm just telling you that the guy is not real and that you shouldn't rely on him as a source for anything.

The photo bothered me because it's use was a lie; it would have been like writing an article about Viet Cong atrocities and illustrating it with the famous picture of the little girl running naked from the napalm attack.

It seems to me like I've worn out my welcome here and my comments and my being here have become a distraction and a point of dissatisfaction for you.

So, it's time to fold the big top and move on to the next city; I don't have a vested interest in your site, have no axe to grind here and it doesn't make sense to overstay my welcome.

All the best; stay true to who you are, and I'll give you the blessing of the desert Mexican that I am; caminate por la sombrita (always walk in the shade).

Mack

gandhi said...

Hombre, como dicen los Argentinos: no seas boludo, che! Claro que estas siempre bienvenido en mi sitio, y espero que volveras.

I'm glad you can see why I found your comments off-topic. If I have mis-construed your motives (Fighting 101'st link here), I apologize. But if I have managed to get you angry, that's good. It's time we stirred up the pot and got some changes happening, coz things can't go on the way they are.

We seem to have two fundamental differences of opinion (aside from our different approaches to debate).

Firstly, you believe that Bush's "war on terror" is a real thing, whereas I believe it is the biggest lie ever told (I used to think the Iraq WMDs were the biggest, but this "war" lie is more subtle, pervasive, enduring and multi-functional). As you are a long-time reader of my blog, I can only assume you think half of what I have posted is either crap or lies, otherwise I cannot understand how you can still maintain such a view. Maybe it's my fault for not addressing the topic more directly: I will try to do so in a future post, OK?

Secondly, you are prepared to give the US Military the benefit of the doubt, whereas I am not. Like the fairy says in Shrek, "Let's explore that, shall we?"

Today's US Military machine is the single most powerful juggernaut in the history of the world. Whoo hoo! But many of these soldiers in Iraq are just kids, Mack. They come from impoverished and uneducated backgrounds, many joined up for the benefits, the pay or the education. Many just wanted to get away from wherever they were. And many never expected, or wanted, to serve abroad as armed combatants. (Others, of course, were just the usual psychotic nut-jobs who join armies all round the world.)

I doubt very much that many of these kids had (or have) any idea what was going on in Washington and London leading up to the invasion. In fact, Zogby did a poll of the military in Iraq a while back which showed that 85 per cent of troops said the US mission was mainly “to retaliate for Saddam’s role in the 9/11 attacks”. Another 42% said they were not really sure what their mission in Iraq was. That's disgraceful, Mack - sending kids off to die without explaining why!? Without de-bunking the political lies behind the invasion!? I am sure all you proud vets expect a bit more than that from the officer corps, right?

Now consider that many of those same kids have had their return from Iraq delayed time and time again. Many signed up for a certain length of time but have not been allowed to leave. Others thought their sevice was complete, but they were dragged back in.

They get dressed up in all kinds of gear, day after day, and go out to sweat in the hot desert sun, day after day after day.

The Iraqi people are openly hostile to them. Kids throw rocks at them. People they cannot even see try to kill them with IEDs. Crowds dance on the burning corpses of their comrades when the IEDs go off.

Under these circumstances, Mack, do you not think it is HIGHLY PROBABLE that a few screws are gonna pop? More than a few, in fact. Just look at what that kind of pressure did to the kids in Vietnam. I mean, if you put kids like that under that kind of prolongued pressure - based on past experience - you simply have to EXPECT a few atrocities, right? Expecially when you have pro-torture psychos like Cheney and Rumsfeld calling the tune (the serving US military leaders in Iraq are a conga-line of suck-holes, to use a famous Australian colloquialism).

As for the US Military's history of "fair and balanced" self-investigation, what about the slap on the wrist that followed that Kevin Sites video of a US soldier killing an unarmed Iraqi in cold blood? To me, that one incident says it all. If that is not straight-out murder in the US Military's eyes, then nothing is (the US media and US public's attitudes were also very revealing, BTW: and you wonder why the rest of the world views you like the Germans of the 1930s?). Then there are those farcical "military tribunals" in Gitmo, which even the military lawyers involved say are not fair. Ridiculous.

In other words, Mack: no, I do not have any faith in the US Military's ability to investigate itself, and no, I am not prepared to give them the benefit of the doubt when there is ample evidence of an atrocity being committed.

BTW even John Murtha says Haditha was a massacre, and he is not the kind of guy to throw allegations like that around carelessly.

Bueno, hombre, espero que hablando de estas cosas sinceramente podemos llegar a entendernos y - quien sabe? - hasta aprender un poco, el uno del otro. Que no te enfadas demasiado, OK?

gandhi said...

Sorry, fighting 101st keyboarders link here.

gandhi said...

PS: I removed the Jesse Macbeth link, which was apparently a distraction to some folk.

thepoetryman said...

Nice post, my friend. Passionate.

Peace.

Anonymous said...

I wanted to comment the first day you put this up,I hate blogger so I did not. Now I feel I have to tell you Thank You,my sentiments exactly.I just don't get it,how people can be pro war it makes me sick.I hate the position our governments put our troops in. Especially when I read they are being sent back to war w/o help for ptss. They put them on anti depressants. It has have been proven that suicide is much more likely for them being on this poison. Its all about the money.People becoming rich off of others misery. I have taken myself off the corporate treadmill. Now I vote with my dollars. It seems the only power I have over the corporatists. I wish more people would think harder before spending foolishly!

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