Support our Robots

“BALAD AIR BASE, Iraq – The airplane is the size of a jet fighter, powered by a turboprop engine, able to fly at 300 mph and reach 50,000 feet. It’s outfitted with infrared, laser and radar targeting, and with a ton and a half of guided bombs and missiles.

The Reaper is loaded, but there’s no one on board. Its pilot, as it bombs targets in Iraq, will sit at a video console 7,000 miles away in Nevada.

The arrival of these outsize U.S. “hunter-killer” drones, in aviation history’s first robot attack squadron, will be a watershed moment even in an Iraq that has seen too many innovative ways to hunt and kill.” — Associated Press, July 16, 2007.

So BushCo solved the PR problem that might possibly have grown into a credible anti-war movement by alleging to guarantee less American casualties which, let’s face it, is all Americans really care about anyway. Otherwise, we would have protested the massacre of the first “Gulf War” in which Iraqi soldiers and civilians were slaughtered in their cars while trying to escape Baghdad.

Forget all that “military honor” nonsense. What kind of monsters fire on retreating troops AND fleeing civilians? Despite all the movies and TV shows referring to “American casualties” in 1991, including that movie with Meg Ryan, only about 200 Americans died in that war as opposed to 150,000+ Iraqis, mostly civilian. The movie, JARHEAD, unique among Gulf I movies, depicts burnt corpses on a highway crammed with cars and trucks bombed fleeing American air power and “smart bombs.”

Gulf War Syndrome…that’s a different story. Poisoning our own troops is not very heroic. But the Pentagon doubts GWS is a real disease, much less caused by our own poisonous artillery, DU and all the rest. And if the Pentagon thinks these alleged “GWS sufferers” are really a bunch of lay-abouts looking for a hand-out merely because they “risked their lives” for their country. But again, the Pentagon knows they didn’t really risk much of anything; it was an air war for chrissake. Well just because the Government has treated war veterans like doo-doo ever since Vietnam doesn’t mean…well, forget it. Who am I, who is anybody, war-veteran or not, to question the U.S. Government?

But let’s imagine for a moment that Iraqis are actually human beings. Or better yet, imagine a country 100 times more powerful than the U.S. bombing all our major cities, then slaughtering the survivors as they attempted to escape in their cars (stuck in traffic jams; literally sitting ducks). Imagine if after this 3 week nightmare resulting in the equivalent of millions of American casualties, the Attackers forced an embargo for twelve years, in which hospitals could not get medicine, vehicles could not receive spare parts, and food and water were scarce, not to mention the destruction of the infrastructure and occasional air raid. THEN imagine that after twelve years of this, the ATTACKERS struck again, this time with the intention of taking over the country, stealing its natural and cultural resources, and basically leaving the U.S. not a society, but a chunk of bombed-out land populated by sick, hungry, wounded, terrified walking zombies. Would we fight back, like the “insurgents?” Or would be throw flowers at our ATTACKER? Would we even call those Americans who, like many French in WWII, resisted, “insurgents” or “Patriots?”

In a high school history class I opined that if I could go back to 1938, strapped with explosives, enter an event populated by Hitler, his top officials, and even their WIVES AND CHILDREN, I would willingly “give my life” to blow up the building and prevent WWII. The teacher applauded my bravery and self-sacrifice. But that was 22 years ago. Today, I suppose I’d be labeled a “terrorist” for even contemplating such a thing. Especially against our friends the Nazis!

Honestly, did anyone, even in the planning stages of 2001-2002, expect that the Iraqis might not appreciate the wholesale destruction of their country? Because “we” didn’t like their government (which “our” CIA help put in place)? People all over the world condemned our invasion of Viet Nam and Cambodia. If they had the means to “change our government” and punish U.S. citizens for the mistakes of that government, would it not be more or less the same thing?

Did anyone really believe the BushCo’s arguments for war in the first place? I remember several large demonstrations against the war before it started in April, 2003. But even so, we don’t give a damn about the Iraqis, only “our troops,” an invading force, including torturers and psycho-killers. For all of Cindy Sheehan’s anti-war work, we didn’t hear much from her until her son was killed while attempting to kill Iraqis. Perhaps, before he was killed, he killed many Iraqis. Did Cindy fly to Iraq to bring him home before he did any more damage?

Well, I suppose we won’t have to worry as much about the safety of our invading, marauding army. We can “support our Robots” instead, as unmanned planes, named, appropriately, The Reaper, murders Iraqis, destroys more homes and “secret insurgent hideouts” ( among their families, friends and other non-combatants, in Iraq), and secures the area for Truth, Justice, and the American Way (massive oil consumption, militarism, predatory Corporatism, racism and all the rest).

This is not about “honor or bravery or sacrifice,” any more than Hiroshima or Nagasaki had been. It’s pure cowardice, killing without having to put “our” troops in harms way. “Support our troops” indeed. But we know what we are, so why fight our own selfish, cowardly, murderous intent? Must a dog learn to meow or a cat bark? Why pretend we’re something we’re not? “We” didn’t create the largest military on earth because we’re decent, peace-loving, democratic do-gooders.

We’re afraid. Very afraid. Fortunately, the wicked cunning of our scientists allows us to have our oil and choke on it too.

I feel safer already knowing our patriotic killer-robots are in Iraq, a button-push, dial-turn or lever-switch away from blasting those evil, freedom-hating prepubescent terrorists back to the … uh … ante-bellum stone-age.

Adam Engel lived for your sins -- and he lived well! -- in Fear-and-Trembling, Brooklyn, one of the last gangrenous toes of NYC not yet severed and replaced with a prosthetic gentrification device. Engel has traveled the farthest regions of cyberspace, where Dark-matter meets Doesn't-matter; and Anti-matter, despite its negative connotation and dour point-of-view, excercises rights of expression protected by Richard Stallman's GNU/Free Software Foundation and CopyLeft agreement, if nobody and nothing else. Having spent many years studying Boobus Americanus (Summum Ignoramus), allegedly the most intelligent mammal on earth -- after its distant relative, Homo Sapiens -- in various natural habitats (couch, cubicle, bar-stool, ball-game -- televised or 'real-time') -- Engel has thus far related his observations of and experiences with this most dangerous of predators in three books -- Topiary, Cella Fantastik, and I Hope My Corpse Gives You the Plague (the combined international sales of which have reached literally dozens, perhaps as many as seventy, with projected revenue to top three digits by decade's end! Truly a publishing phenomenon). Engel is Associate Editor of Time Capsule Books, a division of Oliver Arts & Open Press, published in limited editions for a tiny, highly specified, though eclectic, target-audience: people who actually read books. He can be reached at Read other articles by Adam, or visit Adam's website.

4 comments on this article so far ...

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  1. Look whos talking said on July 27th, 2007 at 1:40pm #

    Ohh the cowardice…ohh the murder of poor inocent women and children and babies…ohh the depleted uranium…ohh the stealing of the oil…ohh “our friends the nazis” (lol!)…ohh Hiroxima and Nagazaki…ohh the evil CIA…ohh Vietnam…ohh the Hollywood propaganda…ohh the embargo on Iraq

    LOLOLOLOL!!! You are a complete cliché. I love how you call yourselfs “independent thinkers” and yet say the exact same thing. Talking about robots…

    PS – Do you people really care about the Iraqis or you “care” for them because it suits your ideology? Because there are much worst things than Iraq going on around the World and yet you couldnt care less.

  2. Adam Engel said on July 27th, 2007 at 11:05pm #

    That’s interesting. You use goofy web slang such as “LOL” (with exclamation points, no less) relay (language really IS a virus) the tired tried and tritely true old argument that there are worst (sic) things going on so as to excuse our destruction of Iraq. “Honest, Judge. All my neighbors get drunk and beat their families five or six nights a week. Me, I only beat them on week-ends.”

    So pointing out that bombing innocent women and children etc. with a robot-guided jet-fighter is a cliche, though the damned things haven’t even been launched yet.

    If all the crimes against humanity you mention in your letter weren’t rendered as hackneyed and ridiculous in such dead language, cliched to the root, so frequently, by so many media, complainers like me wouldn’t have to get our rocks off yakyakyaking about such pet peeves as mass murder by remote control.

  3. Dave On Fire said on July 30th, 2007 at 8:01am #

    A riddle: Which is more accountable for those it kills, a flying deathbot, or a contractor?

  4. Adam Engel said on July 30th, 2007 at 9:40am #

    Easily the Flying Deathbot. At least it has a heart of Titanium. A mercenary/contractor is an evil Zombie summoned back to the land of the living by secret Masonic rituals which include the sacrifice of virgin tax dollars. Some Contractors, like the Golem of Hebrew myth — oddly applicable to Israel itself — are merely mounds of dirt and mud shaped like men. When the BushCo Shaman of Medicine Man makes the sign of the dollar bill ($) on the mound of dirt, it becomes a “living” zombie-like being whose only purpose is to kill (until the sign on its forehead is erased. But it is not a “real” being, rather a heartless, soulless automaton. Unlike the Flying Deathbot, which only responds to electric signals, the Contractor Zombie kills non-stop, 24/7 until the “$” is removed…