This is my overwhelming deal. It's what motivates me to blog, it's the basic story behind my books, it's my message.
I have a big problem with innocents being trampled. I have a problem when every time the big guys make a move, a buncha innocent folks have to pay the price. Reminds me of the joke: What's the black shit between the elephant's toes? Slow moving pygmies.
In my life I've seen too many innocent people, men, women, and children, run over because somebody a million miles away makes a decision. I can't take for granted that some people, somewhere, have to pay the price for polices a buncha folks who somehow are smarter than the rest of us pull out their collective ass, and that it's okay.
Like the unfortunate goatherders in Somalia, whose fires were mistaken for an al-Qaeda encampment. 90% just shrug and say 'oh well, they were in the wrong place at the wrong time'. Nice. So were those 3000 people at the World Trade Center on September 11th.
That's why people's cavalier attitude toward war, this surge in particular, chaps my ass. And it's not just folks' disregard for the lives of the troops who will be sent there, or have their tours extended, or be retained under stop-loss; though the troops are probably better prepared for it. When I was in, I was used to getting pissed on and told it was raining.
It's the poor bastids in Iraq, not the 'dead-enders' not the jihadists, but the regular folks who only want to keep their families safe, put food on the table, and give their kids a better life than they had. These poor people were getting by under Saddam, they were at peace, and though living was hard, their sons and daughters had a chance to get an education and make something of themselves. If they stayed out of the way, didn't make waves, and minded their own business they could live half-decently.
Because some moron, and a buncha other morons with him, decided that removing a despot who was contained, who kept the peace between people who have hated each other for 1400 years (something we have yet to do), was the right thing to do for whatever reason, that has all changed for the average guy. Now he's afraid to send his wife to the market, send his kids to school, or let his daughter out on the street unescorted if at all.
Because of that same buncha morons, a group of Somali goatherders won't be coming home to the families who depended on them, and the animals who were also slaughtered. Do you think these poor guys didn't have families? Did you think the goats were there for decoration? I wonder how many months' supply of meat and milk those goats represented. Did you not learn, the last time our troops were in Somalia, how these poor people have to eak out a living in a land of anarchy and chaos? Or did you even pay attention? Yeah, the black shit between the elephant's toes.
Do any of you realize how lucky we are? How lucky we are not to be subject to the tsunami that occurs when great nations shrug. We just shrug and go about our lives. Twenty thousand more troops? Yeah, no problem, ain't my kid. A surge? Yeah, no problem, it's just a buncha brown folks who like to kill each other anyway so it doesn't matter what we do there. Airstrike on al-Qaeda? Oops, just a buncha Somali goat ropers, no big deal; we'll get 'em next time.
It's nice to be at arm's length, not to be the one pulling the trigger. Take it from someone who has. It's nice to know that no matter what the clown parade in Washington decides, you'll probably wake up tomorrow and do what you do every Monday morning. You take it for granted, whether the President orders an airstrike on a buncha Somali farmers or sends three carrier groups into the Persian Gulf, you'll still pull out of your driveway and go to work. Whether the President sends twenty thousand troops into Baghdad or not, you'll still come home to your wife and kids tomorrow night.
As you lay comfortably in your beds tonight, think about the poor folks who are praying they live through tomorrow. They're the ones who are paying for our leaders' decisions. The black shit between the elephant's toes.