THE WAR ON TERRACOTTA
6,000 YEARS AND WE STILL
DON'T KNOW SHIT
Clay-Coloured Warriors Arrayed As For War
That was the picture on the news Sunday: Ranks of United States Marines in desert camouflage, lined up along a berm in a prayer service on Sunday, in Iraq. They were about to attack the insurgents holding the city of Fallujah. In the picture, they looked just like the army of life-size terra-cotta warriors dug up in China a while ago. Fierce young men, moved about by their Emperor like big clay dolls. Toy soldiers manipulated by scheming politicians. Pawns on the oldest chessboard in the world, the field of battle. And for what?
Whatever happened to the Chinese Emperor who ruled over those clay men? What great deeds did he do, with their blood? Dust, they're all dust, now. And in six thousand more years, will some more "civilized" observer look back, and look down upon us as less advanced, less informed, less human, somehow, than himself? And will he still have his children making war on some strangers' children? Will we ever rise up out of the mud?
There was no need for this war. We were not attacked by Iraq. Nor were we in "imminent danger" of attack. They had no weapons of mass destruction, and we knew it. We wanted what all imperial adventurers have wanted, for six thousand years: The enemy's property: His gold, his jewels, his wheat and rice and barley. His oil.
The simple-minded will say that we will get no oil from Iraq, that we would not have gotten anyway. But we're not there for a few barrels of oil. We're there to establish permanent, physical control over all the oil in the Middle East, where most of the world's oil is. Where most of the governments are unstable and untrustworthy. Where today's terrorist is tomorrow's national leader, as in Israel, or Palestine. Where we have helped to eliminate every means of political expression, other than violence. Where our civilization's life-blood could be cut off at a moments' notice, by those who own it.
So, we exercise our power, our dominion over them, like conquerors of old. Did Genghiz Khan or Attila The Hun talk of bringing their values to conquered lands? Or did they honestly just take what they wanted, and tell no lies about it? How very far we've come, since the Mongols, and the Huns. At least they moved on, after they'd raped and pillaged, looted and razed, leaving nothing, not even a press release. The United States military will never leave the Middle East. We are there on a geological time scale: Until the oil runs out. And the only cultural artifacts we'll be leaving behind are fast-food wrappers. Also like the Huns. But less honest.
Why don't we just SAY what we want, why we're really there, what our long-term plans and goals are? Because they are indefensible. Because no one would support blood for oil, alone. If only to get the votes of those naive security Moms, who will be giving up their sons lives, you've got to dress it up in democratic values; which, if anything, we're giving a bad name to, worldwide. Some values: blood for oil. You can't shove freedom down someone's throat. Even a barbarian knows that. He would just exchange the blood for the oil, and move on, without insulting anyone's intelligence by prating about sharing his values with his victims. He wouldn't leave behind a legion of clay warriors, to represent those who'd died for oil, or whatever.
Marines At Prayer
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