Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Looking For Some Inspiration to Help End the War?

Dearest Readers, this is from the Oregon chapter of Military Families Speak Out and a true story you'll never hear the media tell without spin.

Why I Continue to Work for Peace

Today a woman called me. She saw our chapter's web site, and reached me as the contact person. She left a simple message on my answering machine, telling me that her son was headed to his third deployment.

I spoke to her a little while ago, and it was hard to hold the tears back until I was done. She could not hold hers back. She told me about her son. He deployed early in the war, and the first night he was there, he was deployed on night patrol, not in a tank or any armored vehicle, but in one of the unarmored humvees. They were ambushed and he was hit in the arm by an explosive device, leaving his entire arm and hand full of shrapnel.

They sent him home for surgery. He could no longer hold a rifle, and his mother asked him: "This is going to be 'it', right?" He said, "Yes mom, this is it.” And he proceeded to enjoy his young children as he rested secure in the knowledge that since he could no longer hold a rifle he would no longer be sent to fight in a war he knew was unneeded.

But he was needed, and when the time for re-deployment came, he asked how could he go if he could not hold a rifle. He was told that they would give him a pistol, and that he was going anyway. Off he went for the second time, while his wife and young children pined for his presence, feared for his life, and began to realize the war was unjust, and he was being misused.

Washington DC, 1/07

The second time he killed three people, one of them a child of thirteen years of age. He became sad at the misuse to which he was put, and sad that he was missing his children's milestones. When I heard this part, I strove not to weep on the phone, because of the memory of the night that my daughter called to tell me she had killed a young man. He told his mother that this war was wrong, but that he had promised to serve his country, just as my daughter told me.

Then he returned. His mother says that he cries over the people he killed every day, and his third child was born. He was sent to Georgia to train other young people to die. He told his mother that these kids are not ready to go, that their deployment is set far before their training is done. He feels responsible for these kids, almost children themselves. He wants to kill no more, he said.

Now he is awaiting deployment in July, he still cannot hold a rifle, but he has young charges, the people who he is responsible for training, and he has his commitment. His third child is nine months old, and he and his wife bought a house, thinking he would never be deployed again. The first time he was deployed it was for six months, the second for a year, and this time he is told to expect 18 months. How could I hear this from his mother and not cry? How could I hold her over the phone? She said she heard about us, and she wants to speak out as far and wide as she can, she says that she cannot hear Bush's voice or see his face without wanting to smash it.

Mosaic of fallen soldiers

How can I step away even though my daughter is now safely in my arms, when I have a woman who tells me that she is going to get her whole family together to go to Georgia for Memorial Day so that they all can see her son before he leaves? How can I step away when all she can think about is sending him away with the strongest, best memories of his family? When he tells his mother that he cannot bear to kill any more people that he thinks he will die this time?

How can any mother bear this burden without the rest of us to hold her? How can any soldier bear this burden without knowing we are here to support he or she? I cannot stop, neither can any of us, we are stuck here in hell until this madness stops. Please understand all of you, that what we do is of the utmost importance.

Don't get discouraged; we have no choice as human beings, as mothers, wives, sisters, brothers and fathers. Just as our loved ones have been constrained by circumstance and duty to do what they do, we are mandated to do the very best that we can to stop this. I am proud to be joined with all of you. One day we will look back and see what we did, we will pass our legacy on to the younger ones. We cannot ever let people forget the cost of war. I am grateful that all of you stepped up to share this burden. Peace, Adele

Adele 49, undergrad at Oregon State University in political science with honors and mother of one, a daughter. Her daughter is a soldier who was seriously injured in Iraq and is still dealing with those injuries.

Dubya and supporters, we will end your war! Your leader clearly does not have the competence to do so...nor the intention.

Monkey see, monkey do Vietnam?

He and his band of animals make a great argument for evolutionists...