Tuesday, October 05, 2004
Via Zemblan patriot K.Z.: Will They Ever Trust Us Again? Letters from the Warzone to Michael Moore arrives in bookstores this week, and the Guardian has published a few representative samples:
From: Specialist Willy
Sent: Tuesday March 9 2004 1.23pm
Subject: Thank you
Mike, I'd like to thank you for all of the support you're showing for the soldiers here in Iraq. I am in Baghdad right now, and it's such a relief to know that people still care about the lemmings who are forced to fight in this conflict.
It's hard listening to my platoon sergeant saying, "If you decide you want to kill a civilian that looks threatening, shoot him. I'd rather fill out paperwork than get one of my soldiers killed by some raghead." We are taught that if someone even looks threatening we should do something before they do something to us. I wasn't brought up in fear like that, and it's going to take some getting used to.
It's also very hard talking to people here about this war. They don't like to hear that the reason they are being torn away from their families is bullshit, or that their "president" doesn't care about them. A few people here have become quite upset with me, and at one point I was going to be discharged for constantly inciting arguments and disrespect to my commander-in-chief (Dubya). It's very hard to be silenced about this when I see the same 150 people every day just going through the motions, not sure why they are doing it.
[ Willy sent an update in early August ]
People's perceptions of this war have done a complete 180 since we got here. We had someone die in a mortar attack the first week, and ever since then, things have changed completely. Soldiers are calling their families urging them to support John Kerry. If this is happening elsewhere, it looks as if the overseas military vote that Bush is used to won't be there this time around.From: Anonymous
Sent: Thursday April 15 2004 12.41am
Subject: From KBR truck driver now in Iraq
Mike, I am a truck driver right now in Iraq. Let me give you this one small fact because I am right here at the heart of it: since I started this job several months ago, 100% (that's right, not 99%) of the workers I am aware of are inflating the hours they claim on their time sheets. There is so much more I could tell you. But the fact is that MILLIONS AND MILLIONS of dollars are being raped from both the American taxpayers and the Iraqi people because of the unbelievable amount of greed and abuse over here. And yes, my conscience does bother me because I am participating in this rip-off.From: Sean Huze
Sent: Sunday March 28 2004 7.56pm
Subject: "Dude, Where's My Country?"
I am an LCPL in the US Marine Corps and veteran of Operation Iraqi Freedom. Mr Moore, please keep pounding away at Bush. I'm not some pussy when it comes to war. However, the position we were put in - fighting an enemy that used women, children, and other civilians as shields; forcing us to choose between firing at "area targets" (nice way of saying firing into crowds) or being killed by the bastards using the crowds for cover - is indescribably horrible.
I saw more than a few dead children littering the streets in Nasiriyah, along with countless other civilians. And through all this, I held on to the belief that it had to be for some greater good.
Months have passed since I've been back home and the unfortunate conclusion I've come to is that Bush is a lying, manipulative motherfucker who cares nothing for the lives of those of us who serve in uniform. Hell, other than playing dress-up on aircraft carriers, what would he know about serving this nation in uniform?
His silence and refusal to speak under oath to the 9/11 Commission further mocks our country. The Patriot Act violates every principle we fight and die for. And all of this has been during his first term. Can you imagine his policies when he doesn't have to worry about re-election? We can't allow that to happen, and there are so many like me in the military who feel this way. We were lied to and used. And there aren't words to describe the sense of betrayal I feel as a result.