Listen to the Veterans Who’ve Obeyed Their Hearts and Come to Their Senses: End This War, Now!

1000, 2000, 3000, and 4000.

At each US death-toll milestone in Iraq, believers in George Bush’s belligerent policy have said the same thing:

“If we leave too soon, those who’ve fallen will have died in vain.”

What they overlook — or are too brainwashed to appreciate — is that it was evident from the beginning that all Americans who would perish in a surpassingly illegal, immoral aggression cruelly undertaken without any provocation or credible, honest cause…would die needlessly and for abysmally wrong reasons.

In other words, about as “in vain” as you can possibly get.

Failing to comprehend that, they’d keep us in Iraq until the current blood pool became a crimson ocean, and still they’d mouth their falsely justifying inanity.

Thankfully, more and more Iraq veterans and serving personnel are exposing a countervailing truth.

They understand that it doesn’t advance America’s interest to perpetually present to the world (let alone its Muslim sector) an image of the US defined by our troops constantly kicking down residential doors in Baghdad and other Iraqi cities.

And then ransacking everything inside, as weeping children cling to their fearful mothers.

As evidenced by the Winter Soldier testimony recently offered by veterans sick of the inhumanity they themselves routinely displayed in Iraq, a growing number of our troops are coming to the stark awareness that, as they search for the “enemy” in trashed Iraqi homes, the real culprit can be seen in their own reflection in broken parlor mirrors.

Consider these words by Michael Prysner, one of the many veterans who testified to atrocities and war crimes at Winter Soldier:

“Poor and working people in this country are sent to kill poor and working people in another country, to make the rich richer. Without racism, soldiers would realize that they have more in common with the Iraqi people than they do with the billionaires who send us to war. I threw people onto the street in Iraq, only to come home and find families here thrown onto the street in this tragic and unnecessary foreclosure crisis that is already leaving hundreds of Iraq war veterans homeless.”

Some say that disaster would ensue if we “precipitously” departed Iraq, as if the present situation there isn’t already a monumental disaster for Iraqis and Americans alike.

But professor Robert Pape of the University of Chicago, probably the planet’s leading expert on suicide terrorism, has reached telling conclusions after extensive research, going back many years and involving numerous case studies.

He’s found that terrorism arises, in most instances, from foreign occupations of someone else’s sovereign territory. Once those occupations end, terrorism almost always vanishes.

Moreover, the bulk of Iraqis battling us aren’t terrorists or extremists, but precisely the same kind of patriots we ourselves would be if it were our neighborhoods being vandalized by an invading foreign army.

They’ll relentlessly continue fighting for generations, if we’re insane enough to try to stay that long.

Backers of Bush’s obscene war have their tawdry rationales, and they’re quoted often. But we, on the side of decency and reason, have more powerful words:

“Do not partake in any barren works of darkness, instead expose them.” — Ephesians 5:11

“To sin by silence when the should protest makes cowards of men.” — Abraham Lincoln

“There is no flag large enough to cover the shame of killing innocent people.” — Howard Zinn

For more than five years, we’ve let the disguised voice of abject lust for Black Gold lead us tragically astray.

Reality, however, gives a dramatically different account…which we can continue to ignore only at our infinite, collective, national peril.

Dennis Rahkonen, from Superior, Wisconsin, has been writing progressive commentary with a Heartland perspective for various outlets since the '60s. Read other articles by Dennis.

6 comments on this article so far ...

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  1. Arch Stanton said on March 26th, 2008 at 11:37am #

    Now just hold on. “We” can’t end this war until there’s a winner in the finals of the marine corps puppy tossing contest. I’m rooting for the Samarra Psychos myself.

  2. Wayne Blanchard said on March 27th, 2008 at 6:48am #

    Hello: I read a recent report from the U.K. stating over 15,000 U. S. soldiers have been slaughtered in the Unilateral War of Aggression against Iraq.

    Kind Regards, Wayne Blanchard

  3. hp said on March 27th, 2008 at 8:17am #

    “Sir, no sir!”
    That’s the beginning of the end.

  4. M Stoneman said on March 27th, 2008 at 1:15pm #


  5. Giorgio said on March 28th, 2008 at 11:58am #

    SUPPORT and ELECT Ron Paul to the Presidency!
    He WILL end the War!
    This simple!

  6. Elle Jordan said on April 11th, 2008 at 2:53pm #

    The “Bush Bunch” has tried to keep us in line with “FEAR”. Well it never worked on me. There are 3 times more terrorist now than there were before this war began. How he and his henchmen have stayed in the White House this long is unbelievable. We need a Democratic congress and a Democratic President to attempt to undo with damage done by this administration. The respect that all nations had for us is gone thanks to this administration. Make no mistake, it will take more than two terms to repair the damage already done. If you elect McCain, you will get the same as you got from GWB. We are so far down the road to facism and that is what we need to stand up against. All decent Americans that support the concept our forefathers brought to us, must stand up and if need be start our own revolution against this facism creeping into our country.