Shattered Lives and Gravestones

mothersOne can only guess what is going through the minds of these two mothers from the city of Mosul in Iraq. Hundreds of thousands of residents have had to flee the city as the al-Qaeda group, the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, has taken hold of it. This comes after over a decade of misery and destruction predicated on a blatant lie.

As in every other military intervention around the world, from Libya to Afghanistan, the US is washing its hands of it all and the mainstream media is playing it’s usual amnesia card in the hopes that the American public will somehow magically forget what got us here in the first place: the invasion and occupation of a country that had absolutely nothing to do with the 9/11 attacks and had no weapons of mass destruction to speak of. In the process of this farce, the infrastructure of Iraq was decimated, hundreds of thousands of Iraqis killed, scores tortured and maimed, many more forced to leave their homes due to the violence, and thousands of US soldiers killed or mutilated from the reality that is war.

Today there have been calls for airstrikes and even more “boots on the ground.” Some in the media have actually had the gall to condemn the people of Iraq for their inability to implement the “democracy” that the US brought them. Of course most of the world understands what US democracy looks like, and apart from the meaningless, jingoistic catch phrases that include words like “freedom” and “liberty”, it almost always is accompanied by brutality and plunder.

As thousands flee their homes today we should be reminded of the true costs of US imperialism. It is not tallied in dollars and cents, it is measured in shattered lives and gravestones.

Kenn Orphan  2014

(photo courtesy of Reuters)


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