Global Empire: A Cost of Militarization and War


Some people are starting to see through some of disinformation and lies of Bush & Co, and that includes those in uniform on active duty, some of whom have been to Iraq and seen the Bush war of “freedom and democracy” up close and too personallly.

They have come away from it knowing that war and all its barbaric inhumanity, especially when war is propelled by selfishness and greed, more commonly known as “national interest/national security” is not an answer to or for anything. The worst part is finding out after the fact you went to war for lies—those are bad “demons” to live with.

No longer is this nation content with having a defense force. The Bush bunch has transformed it into a military of aggression. And in the process this nation has become the monster it has professed to be fighting. People on active duty in the military are seeing this, objecting to it, and in a lot of cases are saying “no, I won’t go!” Sgt Kevin Benderman, Darrell Anderson, Adam Mowery, Carl Webb, are but four—however, the list goes on, and on, increasing almost daily. War-resisters, one and all.

Over 5,500 active duty military have gone AWOL rather than be participants in the war in Iraq. In fact, there is a growing number of active duty military that have been to Iraq once, and now, after coming home, have become war-resisters.

Twenty-two-year old Darrell Anderson is one such young man. After enlisting in January 2003, mainly to have money for college (sound familiar?) and in fact, according to Darrell, “I was ready to die for my country.” After being sent to Iraq and seeing this war as a participant, he began to change. He began to see the utter futility of war and he began to see through the rhetoric of why he was there. Then in April, 2004, he was wounded by a roadside bomb.

Three months later, in July, he was sent back home. His mother, Anita, said Darrell seemed fine when he came home, but was deeply changed when he returned home again on leave for Christmas. "He paced the floor constantly, never once slept through the night," Anita Anderson said of her son. "He would get up in the middle of the night and go out walking. He was having nightmares; he was depressed; he couldn't even watch a movie."

According to Darrell, in early April he was ordered to shoot at a car full of people moving in his direction, which Darrell would not do. "This car kept coming, and the other guys were yelling, 'Why don't you shoot, why don't you shoot?' But I felt the car posed no threat. Then, the window of the car rolled down, and it was just an Iraqi family," Anderson said. "I said, 'Look it's just innocent people.' But they kept telling me, 'The next time, you open fire. We don't care."' A few days later Darrell was wounded by a roadside bomb.

When Darrell was notified about going back to Iraq, he said no and went to Canada. “They call me a deserter, but it is not me that deserted; it’s my country that deserted its morals and been over taken by greed. When a country (like ours) makes all its decisions based on money it has no compassion for the people in which their heartless decisions affect. I was willing to die to defend my country, but they lied to me about what I was doing I was sent to kill innocent people and die myself just so the rich could protect their investments. How long will the world stand by and let this unjust war go on, how many young poor kids will die for the rich. Bush wants to set up a democracy in Iraq when we don't have one in the states; we have a plutocracy, a Government ruled by the rich. We as Americans have to open our eyes and question the country we have been raised to trust, and it’s time to stand up and say I will not be a tool of destruction any more.”

As Darrell told me over the phone, “Why should I have to face time in jail just because I do not want to fight in a war? I’m not the one who has done anything wrong.” He is now pegged as a criminal by the U.S. military, which is the real “criminal” in this mix.

What the U.S. military is doing to some of its own is criminal. What the military is doing, directed by the Bush administration, is a direct result of the militarization of this nation as well as its plans for more wars—did someone say Iran?

To Conclude This Now

Thanks to the Bush cabal, we have a war in Afghanistan, a war in Iraq, an almost war in Venezuela and the Philippines, war drums beating for Iran and who knows what other country will be next on the BushCo/PNAC/Carlyle Group hit list.

At the very same time, the Bush cabal, along with burying the country in a mountain of debt that will last decades, is rolling back all public safety net programs for the old, sick, veterans, and children; as well as increasing the level of secrecy under which they operate, and they are criminalizing dissent. He preaches freedom and democracy around the world and destroys it here. “Free speech zones” -- give me a break!

The military is stretched so thin due to the Bush policies and war mongering that it is now calling back to active duty people who have been out for years in some cases. Single moms with babies who have been out for 5 years, called back up; a 20-year old kid with herniated disks in the neck while on active duty, sent back to Iraq anyway; people like Adam Mowery whom the Army discharged due to a significant back injury, now being called back up. There is a long list of those in similar situations.

The Bush cabals “preemptive wars” are creating a growing number of PTSD cases (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder) who are ending up in jail, committing suicide and in some cases, killing their families, wives and girlfriends—here in Oregon, just a couple of days ago, a veteran of the Bush war in Iraq was sent to prison for 2nd degree murder; he suffers from PTSD—he killed his girlfriend.

With cuts to the V.A. (Veterans Administration) where will these people go for treatment when they come back home? Or does anyone care? I really wonder about that a lot when it takes veterans 20, 30 and 35 years to finally get “proper” treatment from this government, as it did with those of us that went to Vietnam.

Every day the Bush cabal is in charge of this country, it starts looking more and more like the old Soviet Union, where the “state” reigns supreme. This is not what we are supposed to be, or about! At one time we were somewhat of a humanitarian nation, where the “rule of law” reigned -- no longer, as Bush and company have transformed all that. They have turned “democracy” into a cheap cliché in just 4 years!

If we do not find a way of taking this country back, this country will go the way of all empires—collapse in on top of itself. Theother nations of the world are starting to stand against this country as never before, and we had best pay attention.

It took massive non-stop acts of civil disobedience 30+ years ago to finally bring the Vietnam War to an end -- I do believe that must be considered a viable action today. If the Bush bunch is not stopped, this nation is doomed. Neither we, nor the rest of the world, can handle any more of the Bush Brigade of neo-con hawks who want to rule the world, as evidenced by their own words.

By Jack Dalton Feb 12, 2005, 00:55
Jack Dalton is a disabled Vietnam veteran, activist, writer and co-editor of the Project for the Old American Century
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