Friday, September 28, 2007

"Another crazy night..."

"People sleep peaceably in their beds at night only because rough men stand ready to do violence on their behalf." -- George Orwell

Just got an email from my son. My son, in Iraq. Haven't you been paying attention? How many times do we have to go through this?

"It's weird how gunfire and a cold night automatically scare someone."

I'm afraid of spiders.

"Our vehicles made contact early, insurgent dismounts shooting at us. They got some .50 cal in return." Good. Make every one count.

"The sound of that huge gun is somehow reassuring when it's pitch black outside, and you have one eye in your nightvision destroying all depth perception."

"We were dismounted ... we started getting shot at pretty heavily, I was yelling at our Platoon leader to get down because he was standing like an idiot next to his vehicle." Glad he's not my son. My son is brilliant.

"It was freezing ... and we could hear gunfire from all sides -- which was suffocatingly scary. There was a group of about 8 or 9 enemies that was engaged by a gunship, so that took care of most of the firing..."

Next time you get traumatized because the styrofoam of your cup o' latte is of a displeasing texture, or you can't figure out that extra $1.58 on you cable bill -- well, maybe a gunship will come and give you some relief.

"It's so weird running down these streets knowing that there could be guys on any of the roofs around you waiting to shoot. Eventually you just accept it and pull tighter security, scanning more alertly."

I feel like crying. I emailed back my advice: "be careful." I'm technically a genius, you know. I also advised that he stay warm. You just can't buy wisdom like that.

"We went back and found one of the bodies that was hit by the .50 cal from earlier. It's kind of surreal ... like they're sleeping -- but not. His arm was mangled by the shot, and it looked like he bled out. Probably died from loss of blood and shock. The injury looked fake, like a halloween costume that was over-exaggerated." Under the skin, we're just meat.

Even a flesh wound from a weapon like that will kill you -- hydrostatic shock -- a sort of wave that pulses through the whole body, disrupting the vascular system. Like a popped balloon. The insult is more than skin deep.

This is the tragedy of it all. Inevitable, stupid, wasteful. That was somebody's son. But these things come with living on this particular planet. I would weep for the enemy only if I really, really, really thought about it. I'm not going to. The subtlety of my thinking in this matter stops when I get to the part about chopping journalists' heads off, or cutting stewardesses' throats with boxcutters.

Are all these enemies of that caliber? Yes, they are. They are more than just supporters, more than just dancers in the streets. They are not mere nominal Nazis, who joined the Party as a social expedient. They are the operators of the death camps. Specifically, they are armed but not uniformed unlawful combatants creeping about in the night, fighting for the same cause that brought down a matchless pair of Towers in New York City, as some of us may recall -- the greatest accomplishment of Islam in three hundred years. We build Panama Canals; they learn how to fly but not how to land a plane. They are not freedom-fighters seeking to liberate their nation. They are co-conspirators in an on-going and murderous felony.

Kill them, and burn the bodies. There may very well be an ever escalating cycle of violence, as the lefties love to intone. But that's what happens every time there's a plague. Kill the rats, kill the cockroaches -- kill the vermin, because their love of death knows no end, whereas we long for an end to violence.

They love death because the world they have made for themselves is one of poverty and stagnation. We have the hope of an afterlife too, but the world we have made for ourselves is the best of all possible worlds. That's not saying much, but it says a lot.

That bled-out young Arab man? Maybe he was a barefaced boy, and it's the first time he was in harm's way. Maybe he was a stone killer and had just taken off a black mask, part of the costume he wore while he tortured a kidnapped nun -- for video, of course. Maybe maybe. But we do know how many fervent prayers will have poured from his lips, praising and entreating Allah for protection and success: all the prayers he could manage.

You did not read of this in any newspaper. CNN will not be covering this story. It goes on every night, and you have no idea about it. Get it? Do you see the point?

" one was hurt -- between 12 and 15 enemies KIA." No one was hurt, who matters.

None of our guys. Lots of scum. Get it? This doesn't sound like we're losing. See? This is what we call victory. Well, it's what we call victory. But we don't work for the newspapers, or for CNN. I guess they'd know better. Strange, how when only the enemy gets killed, that's somehow bad, to them. We stack up the dead bodies of terrorists like cord wood, and this is bad? No. It is good. It's called victory.

A good night, then. Did you sleep peaceably in your bed?


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