on earth doesn’t remember the heady rush of adrenaline, the thumping
heart, the sweaty palms, the loss of reason, the thrashing about of
unwieldy emotions love brings.
we face “the one” helplessly, and with abandon, when there are
intimations of immortality and grandeur — when there seems to be no
other option but to allow us to cross continents, run on empty, and float
in a bubble that’s not rooted in everyday reality. Broken marriages,
illicit affairs, overdoses, grand theatre, great art, timeless writing is
testimony to its power.
says it even better in A Midsummer Night’s Dream than he does in Romeo
and Juliet. Cupid aims his arrow and a beautiful woman falls in love with
is no different. Like the one against Iraq. The adrenaline of a man who
can with his little pinkie set hundreds of thousands of soldiers in
motion, flood a country with bombs and missiles, disregard the UN and buy
up the support of smaller countries.
there are the trigger-happy, testosterone-pumped soldiers, the intimations
of grandeur in holding weapons that can wipe out 20, 30 or a few thousand
lives in seconds.
US-led war against Iraq, with the heart stopping images of peeled-off
faces, blown-off legs and charred bodies of innocent people, is an
unstoppable momentum begun very early this year when thousands of
coalition troops began pitching tent not too far from oil fields.
blind love is in life and literature interrupted, indeed severed by the
clearing of the dust which reveals the tear stained tears of children, a
devastated wife, a betrayed husband, a splintered family, a shrivelled
passion – often the damage is irredeemable, but sometimes, a clear voice
of reason can salvage a man or woman with dust in their face running
behind a jackass.
so it is with war.
fair in love and war until reality breaks in and as the adrenaline drains
from us we sit wide-eyed and astonished at the carnage around us.
we need now is that clear voice of reality.
the dust of hate in their eyes America is following the jackass of war.
networks have turned into a parody of reporting and propaganda machines.
The families of their felled boys are being told they died to save
“freedom”. Everyone’s following the jackass.
voices of reason are being ignored, dismissed.
journalists have died, some are missing, and at least one sacked for
saying Americas plan has gone horribly wrong. Journalists, who haven’t
had jackass dust thrown in their faces are covering Iraq because its now
no longer an option, it’s a duty, a responsibility using the might of
the media to counteract mass propaganda to give voice to the dehumanised
and mounting death toll of the Iraqis, the voiceless. And that is what we
must continue to do. As Booker Prize winner Arundati Roy does in the
using the “good offices” of UN diplomacy (economic sanctions and
weapons inspections) to ensure that Iraq was brought to its knees, its
people starved, half a million of its children killed, its infrastructure
severely damaged, after making sure that most of its weapons have been
destroyed, in an act of cowardice that must surely be unrivalled in
history, the ‘Allies’ – sent in an invading army Operation Iraqi
Freedom? It’s more like Operation “Let’s Run a Race, but First Let
Me Break Your Knees.”
American and British TV continue to advertise themselves as “balanced”
when their propaganda has achieved hallucinatory levels.
Blair’s earnest submissions, and all his fawning, Bush has made it clear
that the UN will play no independent part in the administration of postwar
Iraq. The US will decide who gets those juicy “reconstruction”
the American people will end up paying for the war, oil companies, weapons
manufacturers, arms dealers, and corporations involved in
“reconstruction” work will make direct gains from the war. Many of
them are old friends and former employers of the Bush/Cheney/Rumsfeld/Rice
cabal. Bush has already asked Congress for US$75 billion.
for “re-construction” are already being negotiated. The news doesn’t
hit the stands because much of the US corporate media is owned and managed
by the same interests. It’s become clear that the war against terror is
not really about terror, and the war on Iraq not only about oil.
there is the voice of Ellen Dust, an American columnist on the subject of
pressure on American journalists to join the propaganda machine.
I wonder whether this war is an elaborate means of distracting the country
while its economy bucks and lurches toward the brink of a full-blown
depression? No and no. That sort of remark will simply have to wait until
our boys are safely back home.”
So all’s fair in love and war then. But even those in
the throes of love and war madness must realise that one day the dust will
clear, and history will record how thousands died because of those who
blindly followed the jackass.