Laurel and Hardy, like heads of state, could battle with no risk to their health. In a tiff they would set about smashing each others’ things, each politely allowing the other to finish before retaliating. Their behavior illuminates the essence of war, the dispensable property, of course, being people. The affronted parties fling out their lower class taxpayers to kill or be killed, then step back out of harm’s way to portray sorrow over the carnage. Unlike Laurel and Hardy, the humor is very dark.
Before the United States attacked the Taliban, their leader made a truly statesmanlike offer: To meet George Bush on the field of battle like men and spare the non-stakeholders. It seemed outlandish but only in the context of our chicken-shit society. The challenge got little play in the media and Bush ignoring it got no play at all. He preferred to sacrifice the lives of brave soldiers and innocent bystanders to free Afghani women from their burkhas, which, according to recent reports, have been exchanged for pedophilia and venereal disease in the ensuing chaos. Al Kaida, whoever he is, exited stage right.
Iraq is boxed in by the No-fly zone and powerful countries at its borders leaving its only claim to glory these days, recognition by the United States as a worthy foe. Interesting that killing heads of state like Saddam Hussein, the advertised focus of the latest crusade, is against the law, but killing the victims of his oppression and American soldiers is perfectly legal.
Sad as it seems, George Bush must be a reflection of what the American character has become, because Americans are prepared to let war proceed against a faraway country that has never so much as farted our way. We are separated from Iraq by the Atlantic Ocean yet European nations must be persuaded of the danger Sadam Hussein presents. And it doesn’t collectively appall us that pursuit of this war will result in everyday families being blown to smithereens as we coldly lay them in the coffin of “collateral damage”; this to save our unworthy asses from the trumped up possibility that Iraq might someday give us an owie. It is not only inhumane but cowardly and violates every moral code Americans take pride in embracing. Putting such a premium on our own lives in fact devalues them. It makes us not worth saving. We must bear constantly in mind that politicians live not at the apex but near the bottom of the human heap and from there they wield their power. The masses must guide these moral cripples to an acceptable path, not adopt their corrupt standards as our own.
War with Iraq clearly was part of the Bush agenda, 911 the excuse, however illogical. It was a deception of despotic proportions to keep this platform plank invisible during the election, to omit the campaign cry, “A vote for B ush is a vote for war!” Then the people could have spoken from their hearts. Terrorists may have hijacked Islam, but oil barons have hijacked the United States. If Americans allow their country to be led into war by this scourge of ruthless nincompoops, retribution will be visited upon us and, as always, not upon the perpetrators. In the world view, we’ll deserve it.