Prague Twin

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

War Games

When I was a kid, my friends and I used to play with Army men. We had intricate battles set up and complex rules of engagement. As we got older, killing each others' army men gave way to killing each other: again with a complex set of rules of engagement. We took this quite seriously. I might not even remember how serious it was if it weren't for my Mom one time admonishing me for taking things a bit too far. I remember her quoting me as she had heard from several houses down, "No Brian, you are dead! Get down on the ground! All the way down! I blew your head clean off and that is a twenty count and you know it!"

All this war play got me thinking about how I would react if called to actual duty someday. A 12 year-old me gave it some serious thought and I came up with the following: I would defend my country against any invader, no matter what. I don't think I would allow myself to be sent off to a foreign land to kill or be killed, but if someone else was invading, I'd be the first one in line to defend my country. My goal would be to kill at least one of the invaders before I got killed myself. If I could kill two before I bought it, I figured that would be a success. I didn't concern myself with the details about who might invade or why, I just knew that "this land is my land" and I would defend it to the death.

Twenty five years later, I hold the same opinion. I've since left my beloved country, but I would defend my home wherever that might be against any invation no matter what. I would be part of a resistance or just a rouge saboteur. I would surely go down with a fight.

I've always figured that most people feel the same as I do, and that Iraqis would be no exception. Up until recently there had been some discrepancy as to Iraqi public opinion on the subject of American occupation, but today's report leaves little doubt that at least now most Iraqi's indeed feel the same as I would. (Go to born at the crest of the empire to download the pdf of the whole poll; I don't know how to make pdf links, but I'd love to know...)

I think this is a pretty simple point. Most people don't care too much for lofty ideals or complex philosophical arguments. No, most people are pretty simple. We can try to justify our presence in any number of ways, but as Bill Clinton said the other night to Tim Russert (loose quote here), "no matter how good our intentions may be, eventually people are going to resent our presence because we are not from there." I've tried to use the example of Chinese tanks rolling through the southern U.S. and how they might be received by the local residents. I am usually met with arguments about how the Chinese wouldn't have a reason to be there in the first place or some other irrelevant point. Just try to imagine if for some reason they were rolling down the streets of Galveston: people just wouldn't like it, even if they were there to secure the area after a hurricane and to help rebuild. I guarantee that the people there would be taking pot-shots at those tanks.

If we believe in Democracy as we say we do, then it looks like we have about a year to get the hell out of Iraq. Otherwise, we are acting directly against the will of the majority of the Iraqi people. And that, for better or for worse, is nothing less than tyranny.


  • I would protect my property, but I would never invade a country because the government wanted me to.

    By Blogger Jake Porter, at 11:01 PM  

  • Protect your own but never attack/invade another. Anyone will fight harder in their own back yard.

    God Bless America, God Save The Republic

    By Blogger David Schantz, at 2:32 AM  

  • Forget about leaving Iraq, I'm still wondering whether Bush and Cheney are actually going to leave the White House in January '09.

    I mean, can they really entrust the "Middle East Democracy Plan" in the hands of anyone but themselves?

    By Blogger reality-based educator, at 3:19 AM  

  • Jake and David,

    What a wonderful world it would be if everyone thought like we did.

    Home field advantage is more important than ever in war.


    I've heard some rumblings to that effect. I'm not buying it, but anything is possible with these bastards.

    By Blogger Praguetwin, at 7:25 AM  

  • pt, will you be doing a post on the economy soon? I'm confused by today's numbers. The Dow's near it's all-time high, but apparently they were alittle spooked by the inflation numbers and the lower consumer spending and suddenly the possibility of a rate increase is rearing its ugly head again. Or at least that's what I read on Reuters. What do you think is happening? Will the Dow plunge ahead to an all-time high next week or fall back a little until they get more economic data?

    By Blogger reality-based educator, at 5:19 AM  

  • So the Jews in 1941 Third Reich are just shit out of luck. Sorry guys, but you're in Europe. Same thing for the South Koreans in June, 1950, for the Kuwaitis in 1990. And the Darfurians (and southern non Muslims) in Sudan are doomed (and they are). Unless they come here, no barbarity against millions is worth a single drop of American blood. Am I reading you all right? Wow, your humanity is overwhelming.

    By Blogger Roger Fraley, at 1:06 AM  

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