A link to a post.
Chris Hedges has written an important article about a wounded war veteran who, after almost ten years of excruciating and increasing disability, is facing death. The story is horrible. It is not quite unique; but it is quite horrible.
I think that it is essential that this article get under the noses of as many people as possible, especially (a) those who are still unrepentant cheerleaders for our previous (and current) aggressive, pre-emptive Middle East wars, and also (b) those who think "well, mistakes were made -- but it's time to move on." It is way too early to move on. It's high time to "support the troops" -- ours, and our enemies' (both sides of which were wounded or killed under our false pretenses) -- by working for their rehabilitation and just compensation.
What do I think should be done? I can think of several things.
1. As to our politicians, military officer class, and bureaucrats from Cheney-Bush and Obama-Biden on down: Vacate their jobs and their retirement benefits, and instead, put them on mandatory community-service without parole for the next twenty years. Draw lots: even numbers, working in VA hospitals in the US; odd numbers, working in hospitals and nursing homes in Iraq, under the authority and supervision of the Iraqi government.
2. As to our corporations in the military-industrial complex, including their senior staffs, owners, and investors: "Sequester" their corporate and personal assets to the extent necessary to fund No. 1 above.
3. As to the flag-waving, war-boosting churches: Let them, as an act of contrition, stop displaying the American flag (or pledging allegiance to it) anywhere on their properties, since they are deeply complicit in sullying the reputation of the nation. (Further suggestion: take the name of Jesus, and any statuary of Him, off your public displays: you've sullied His name, too. Let your contrition be public, and your faith private.)
None of the above proposals contemplates violence -- simply a serious effort at restitution, restoration, reconciliation, and repentance.
I am grateful to Chris Hedges for talking about this. It's not going to make him wealthy, or popular. Thanks, Chris, for talking about a real "inconvenient truth."