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(DV) Ransel: Pictures of Iraq







Pictures of Iraq
by Vi Ransel
March 10, 2006

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On one/fifteen/oh three

worldwide demonstrations were dismissed

by the Bush Administration

as "focus groups", assisted

by U.S. corporate-owned media "reporting",

mindlessly supporting

the objectives of The Regime,

since objectivity is purported to meet with reprisal

which threatens the survival of journalistic careers.


Beheadings and kidnappings serve to deter

reporters and worldwide aid organizations

enabling private "military" corporations

like Bechtel and Halliburton

to bear "the White Man's burden"

by continuing to aid the occupation,

subjugation and devastation

of Iraq with a free hand

at dismantling the country's infrastructure

and siphoning off all the profit they can

by using foreign workers when

Iraqi unemployment stands

at seventy per cent.  Reminiscent

of vampire corporations using job exportation

to bring Americans to groveling subsistence.


Engineers and doctors drive their cars

as taxis to feed their families.

The costs of war include massacres

and slaughter, bullet-riddled

mosques with blood-stained carpets,

children dead, mass graves of innocents,

the inextinguishable burning

of white phosphorous.

Shattered hospitals, families living in the streets,

dead and rotted bodies being eaten

by cats and dogs for two weeks

while the military denied relief teams

access to Fallujah's streets.

The underestimated death toll,

bodies tossed in the Euphrates,

Abu Ghraib.  Mass execution solutions,

neighborhoods bombed into rubble,

entire families incinerated in houses

where they huddled.  Whole towns blown

completely out of this world.  And

this is only the tip of the iceberg.


Basic services and distribution systems

are nowhere near repaired,

so people die from hunger, water borne

disease and inadequate healthcare.

And as soldiers are attacked

over 100 times in twenty-four hours,

there are many more deaths as a result

of fright-triggered random gunfire.


The military killing of so many civilians

stems from the fact that soldiers are trying

to maintain an untenable position

fighting a guerilla war

while the administration ignores

that insurgents enjoy massive support

from infuriated people who remember

loving someone who's died,

so there's no wonder there's

anger that shoots from their eyes

at U.S. military patrols

as they go rumbling by

or that there's dancing and cheering

and revenge churning

as GIs die screaming

and writhing and burning

in insurgent-created,

military vehicle funeral pyres

as if the pain could be ameliorated

by cleansing with fire.


These attacks can come from anywhere,

at any time and be launched by anyone.

Didn't we do this in Viet Nam?

Is this a re-run?!

And we have four supersized,

permanent ! military bases there.

I'm stunned!

Where the hell did they come from?!

Too much of this war is conducted in secrecy.

This is all too deja familiar to me.


Iraqi oil reserves were supposed

to support both the war and reconstruction,

but Iraq's oil's been removed from world markets

helping to drive oil prices upward.

Iraq is importing ALL of its gas and has

miles-long fill-up lines.  Isn't that funny?

Just who benefits from attacks on Iraq's

oil infrastructure?  Follow the money.


(And remember that 28-page omission

in the report of the 9/11 commission?)


Now we're damned if we do and damned if we don't.

Whether we stay with the Iraqis or leave them alone.

More troops will speed up

the spiral of engagement.

Withdrawal could leave them with civil war

on top the present devastation.


Most of the people in every other

country on the face of the earth

oppose America's agenda in Iraq,

but for what it's worth,

most Americans don't know many Muslims,

but may hate them with such ferocity

that they can't get too worked up

about a few Polaroid picture atrocities.


Vi Ransel lives in New York, and can be reached at: rosiesretrocycle@yahoo.com.

Other Poems by Vi Ransel

* Mass Production
* DUH?
* Sumeriology
* Poor in America -- P.I.A.
* The Treadmill

* The Driver