The Lady Speaks

Friday Anti-War Song

In a World Gone Mad
— Beastie Boys

In a world gone mad it’s hard to think right
So much violence hate and spite
Murder going on all day and night
Due time we fight the non-violent fight

Mirrors, smokescreens and lies
It’s not the politicians but their actions I despise
You and Saddam should kick it like back in the day
With the cocaine and Courvoisier
But you build more bombs as you get more bold
As your mid-life crisis war unfolds
All you want to do is take control
Now put that axis of evil bullshit on hold
Citizen rule number 2080
Politicians are shady
So people watch your back ’cause I think they smoke crack
I don’t doubt it look at how they act

In a world gone mad it’s hard to think right
So much violence hate and spite
Murder going on all day and night
Due time we fight the non-violent fight

First the ‘War On Terror’ now war on Iraq
We’re reaching a point where we can’t turn back
Let’s lose the guns and let’s lose the bombs
And stop the corporate contributions that they’re built upon
Well I’ll be sleeping on your speeches til I start to snore
‘Cause I won’t carry guns for an oil war
As-Salamu alaikum, wa alaikum assalam
Peace to the Middle East peace to Islam
Now don’t get us wrong ’cause we love America
But that’s no reason to get hysterica
They’re layin’ on the syrup thick
We ain’t waffles we ain’t havin’ it

In a world gone mad it’s hard to think right
So much violence hate and spite
Murder going on all day and night
Due time we fight the non-violent fight

Now how many people must get killed?
For oil families pockets to get filled?
How many oil families get killed?
Not a damn one so what’s the deal?

It’s time to lead the way and de-escalate
Lose the weapons of mass destruction and the hate
Say ooh ah what’s the White House doin’?
Oh no! Say, what in tarnation have they got brewing??!!!!???!!
Well I’m not pro Bush and I’m not pro Saddam
We need these fools to remain calm
George Bush you’re looking like Zoolander
Trying to play tough for the camera
What am I on crazy pills? We’ve got to stop it
Get your hand out my grandma’s pocket
We need health care more than going to war
You think it’s democracy they’re fighting for?

In a world gone mad it’s hard to think right
So much violence hate and spite
Murder going on all day and night
Due time we fight the non-violent fight

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December 14, 2007 Posted by | America, Bush, Cheney, Children, Civil War, Government, Human Rights, Iraq, Middle East, Military, Music, Pentagon, Politics, Protest, Republicans, War, White House, World Peace | Leave a comment

Walter Cronkite: Our Troops Must Leave Iraq

Nearly forty years ago, my mother was a senior in high school, our country was mired in an unwinnable war, and Walter Cronkite had returned returned from a trip to Vietnam. At the end of his February 27, 1968 broadcast, he made editorial statement calling for the return of American troops.

Part of what he had to say then:

“… For it seems now more certain than ever that the bloody experience of Vietnam is to end in a stalemate. This summer’s almost certain standoff will either end in real give-and-take negotiations or terrible escalation;

[snip]

To say that we are closer to victory today is to believe, in the face of the evidence, the optimists who have been wrong in the past. To suggest we are on the edge of defeat is to yield to unreasonable pessimism. To say that we are mired in stalemate seems the only realistic, yet unsatisfactory, conclusion. Continue reading

December 5, 2007 Posted by | America, Bush, Cheney, Civil War, Government, Iraq, Middle East, Military, Pentagon, Politics, Protest, Television, US Military, Vietnam, War, White House | 2 Comments

No Timeline, No Funding. No Excuses.

El Pollo Loco told the ‘Murkan people that things are just peachy in Iraq, that Anbar is progressing nicely, (even if his buddy, the Sheik, was blown up near his own home) that we have to give the Iraqi government more time to meet the benchmarks we’ve set (even though that’s what he said in March and again in July… all the while conveniently moving the goalposts since they can’t even manage to agree on what color the sky is).

But, because he’s such a nice guy, he’s going to start bringing some of the troops home. Of course, he failed to mention that the surge troops will be rotating out of Iraq whether he wanted it or not.

From the AP:

Bush said that 5,700 U.S. forces would be home by Christmas and that four brigades — for a total of at least 21,500 troops — would return by July, along with an undetermined number of support forces.

Which means, we went from 130,000 or so troops in January of this year to a current high of 162,000 and will “reduce” to a pre-surge 130,000 or so by July 2008.

Only in BushWorld is going back to where you started called “progress” and considered to be a “troop withdrawal” on par with that of the Democratic proposal which would have all troops (minus a residual 30-40,000) home by July 2008.

Read the rest of this entry…

September 13, 2007 Posted by | America, Bush, Civil War, Congress, Edwards, Government, Iraq, Middle East, Politics, US Military, War, White House | 2 Comments

3500

June 6, 2007 Posted by | America, Bush, Cheney, Civil War, Condoleeza Rice, Government, Middle East, Military, Pentagon, Rumsfeld, US Military, War, White House | 3 Comments

Jenn’s Sunday Sermon – Reaching 3500

The number of US service personnel killed in Iraq will, most likely, reach 3500 tomorrow. Tonight, actually, as we here in America sleep safely in our beds.

I felt sick at heart earlier when I checked www.icasualties.org and saw the death toll had risen by 14 since the last update of Counting the Cost.

3500.

Tony Snow will spin it, like he does every other fact, but I’m sure he won’t make the mistake of saying – as he did just a little less than a year ago – it’s “just a number.”

3500.

Husbands and wives, fathers and mothers, brothers and sisters, sons and daughters, aunts, uncles, cousins, best friends, future spouses, class clowns – all lost in a war of pre-emption turned to religious civil warfare that they did not start and cannot stop.

3500.

The neo-cons and their hardcore base of cheerleaders will tell you things are getting better, really. It’s just the media that’s making things look bad. They’re ignorant of history and oblivious to facts, and yes, they really do prefer to “make their own reality.” (Of course, we drug schizophrenics and paranoiacs who live in their own reality…. just sayin’.)

Things are going fine … last throes … turning the corner … etc, etc, etc. Ad nauseum.

3500.

El Pollo Loco has promised a “long bloody summer.” I wonder how long…and how much more bloody?

It took nearly a year, 295 days¹ or roughly 1.67 Friedman Units, for the death toll to reach 500 combat deaths.

It took slightly less to reach 1000 combat deaths – 242 days¹ or 1.34 Friedmans.

Reaching 1500 combat deaths took 177 days¹ – just under .5 FUs.

2000 combat deaths? Roughly, 266 days.²

2500? Roughly 231 days

3000? New Year’s Eve, 2006. Just 200 days.²

When – when, not if – we reach 3500 tonight, it will have been only 154 days² since the last milestone.

3500.

How many more deaths are we willing to take? How many more deaths before the American people stand up, more or less united, and say, “No more?”

Sure we’re telling pollsters that 70% of us want this nightmare to end. 70% of us think our country is on the wrong track. 70% of us don’t believe the President when he tells us we’re winning, that our troops are making a difference, that Al-Qaeda and Iran (and not civil war) are to blame for the fact that Iraq is going to hell in a handbasket.

Too many of us are standing by, allowing the President to continue his “surge” to help “win the war” – all of which should be properly termed “an escalation to continue the occupation.”

But when are we going to stand and fight? When are we going to see mass protests? When are we going to see action in the House and Senate that represent the views of the majority of Americans?

George Bush and Dick Cheney and Karl Rove and Orrin Hatch and all the other Republican tools and fools can continue spewing lies, but it’s time for the 70% to do more.

It’s time to force our CongressCritters to follow the will of the people. No more wavering, no more cowering. No more useless bills that continue the blank check war. No more useless bills and toothless hearings that fail to hold the administration accountable for its myriad failures.

– – –

¹ – Based on info from Where Are The Weapons?

² – Rough estimates based on counting the number of whole weeks between dates and multiplying by 7. Yes, they may not be entirely accurate, but you try it while screaming children raid your workspace, wreck the house in a frenzy of hyper-activity, and eat all the pineapple upside-down cake.

June 3, 2007 Posted by | America, Bush, Cheney, Civil War, Condoleeza Rice, Government, Iraq, Middle East, Pentagon, Politics, Protest, Republicans, Rumsfeld, US Military, War, White House | 8 Comments

Celebrating “Mission Accomplished” Day

It’s too bad Hallmark doesn’t make a card for this anniversary. Of course, it’s hard to come up with an appropriate sentiment. Do you wish the Iraqis a “Happy Anniversary! Since the end of “major combat operations” life’s been a little rough, but hey! You’ve got a Constitution…and had elections…and….”

See? Where do you go with it?!

The greeting card for neocons is easier, “Congrats on Mission Accomplished! Just another Friedman unit or two or ten and surely Iraq will turn the corner and the insurgents will be in their last throes. Really!”

Four years after his famous banner-and-codpiece photo op, look at El Pollo Loco’s war and occupation have brought us…..what, exactly?

Terrorist attacks worldwide are up by 25%. Forty-five percent of all attacks (6630 of them, up 91% from 3468) took place in Iraq, and 65% of terror attack fatalities occured there.

Tens of thousands – and possibly hundreds of thousands – of Iraqis are dead. Men, women, children. Iraqi citizens of all ages are dying at an average of 1500 per month, according to Iraq Casualty Count.

More than 50% of Iraqis support attacks on US military personnel.

We have lost 3351 of America’s sons and daughters with more than 26,000 wounded. April 2007 was one of the deadliest months in the history of the occupation for American troops, with over 100 killed.

The financial cost for this war is over $500,000,000,000. Five hundred billion. And what is there to show for it? Reconstruction projects touted as successes are falling apart.

The emotional cost can’t even begin to be calculated. We have thousands of soldiers suffering PTSD. Their families are living with worry and stress on a level that we on the outside can’t really begin to comprehend.

Over 430,000 service personnel have been discharged from the military after serving in Iraq and Afghanistan. More than 119,000 have sought treatment from the VA for medical or mental issues.

El Pollo Loco will most likely avoid comment today, though I’m sure Mr. Snowjob will do a fine little spin-and-dance number about it. Certainly, lots of Republican right-wing pundits will foul the airwaves as they spin their little hearts out.

But, at the end of the day, the fact remains: Iraq is not a success. It’s a worsening civil war, and our soldiers are stuck in the middle of it.

There is no chance – none, zero, zip – that this is going to come out well for the US. Iraqis aren’t suddenly going to wake up and say, “Hey – we don’t really give a sh*t what sect you are, or whether or not you pray this way or that. It’s time to heal our country, and come together as brothers (and sisters) to restore our nation.”

Instead, the divides will grow deeper, as will the hatred, and the killing will continue until someone – US-backed or not – becomes the next Saddam.

It’s time for Congress to stand up and send a message to the President from the American people:

Bring our troops home, Mr. President.

* * *

UPDATE: 5/1/07

Some of us are celebrating Law Day and hoping for a return to the rule of law that will signal the end of the Bush misAdministration. Preferably (please please please) with a perp walk at the Hague.

However, I’m sure El Pollo Loco and his minions/minders are celebrating – no kidding – Loyalty Day. Oh, the irony in this little Presidential proclamation: [emphasis mine]

[…] America was founded by patriots who risked their lives to bring freedom to our Nation. Today, our citizens are grateful for our Founding Fathers and confident in the principles that lead us forward. On Loyalty Day, we celebrate the blessings of freedom and remember our responsibility to continue our legacy of liberty.

Our Nation has never been united simply by blood, birth, or soil, but instead has always been united by the ideals that move us beyond our background and teach us what it means to be Americans. We believe deeply in freedom and self-government, values embodied in our cherished documents and defended by our troops over the course of generations. […]

 

 

 

 

May 1, 2007 Posted by | America, Bush, Cheney, Civil War, Government, Iraq, Middle East, Pentagon, Politics, Protest, US Military, War, White House | 10 Comments

Friday Anti-War Song

I AIN’T MARCHIN’ ANYMORE
— Phil Ochs

Oh I marched to the battle of New Orleans
At the end of the early British war
The young land started growing
The young blood started flowing
But I ain’t marchin’ anymore

For I’ve killed my share of Indians
In a thousand different fights
I was there at the Little Big Horn
I heard many men lying
I saw many more dying
But I ain’t marchin’ anymore

It’s always the old to lead us to the war
It’s always the young to fall
Now look at all we’ve won with the sabre and the gun
Tell me is it worth it all

For I stole California from the Mexican land
Fought in the bloody Civil War
Yes I even killed my brother
And so many others
And I ain’t marchin’ anymore

For I marched to the battles of the German trench
In a war that was bound to end all wars
Oh I must have killed a million men
And now they want me back again
But I ain’t marchin’ anymore

It’s always the old to lead us to the war
It’s always the young to fall
Now look at all we’ve won with the sabre and the gun
Tell me is it worth it all

For I flew the final mission in the Japanese sky
Set off the mighty mushroom roar
When I saw the cities burning
I knew that I was learning
That I ain’t marchin’ anymore

Now the labor leader’s screamin’ when they close the missile plants,
United Fruit screams at the Cuban shore,
Call it “Peace” or call it “Treason,”
Call it “Love” or call it “Reason,”
But I ain’t marchin’ any more.

March 23, 2007 Posted by | America, Bush, Cheney, Civil War, Government, Iraq, Middle East, Music, Politics, Protest, War, White House, World Peace | Leave a comment

Army in Trouble

How do you know when your Army is f*cked? There are several questions wannabe-Kings should ask when it comes to wars. The answers can point toward an Army – and a quest for empire – that’s headed straight into FUBAR territory, if it’s not already there.

Here’s one that got a couple dictators: “Is it winter, and are you determined to attack Russia anyway?” Things didn’t go so well for Napolean or Hitler after answering yes to this one.

Another is: “Is your technologically-superior and extremely large army going to attack a small country whose populace has a history of rebelling against their ‘liberators’?” Romans in Scotland, Russia in Afghanistan, the US in Vietnam, and Britain in India, the Middle East, the Far East, several places in Africa, and [though it doesn’t quite meet the criteria] the good ol’ USA.

I’m fairly sure the next question would be, “Is your Army so stretched that the ‘ready brigade’ isn’t?”

From the New York Times:

For decades, the Army has kept a brigade of the 82nd Airborne Division on round-the-clock alert, poised to respond to a crisis anywhere in 18 to 72 hours.

Today, the so-called ready brigade is no longer so ready. Its soldiers are not fully trained, much of its equipment is elsewhere, and for the past two weeks the unit has been far from the cargo aircraft it would need in an emergency.

[snip]

Army officials concede that the unit is not capable of getting at least an initial force of several hundred to a war zone within 18 hours, a standard once considered inviolate.

[snip]

Since President Bush ordered reinforcements to Iraq and Afghanistan in January, roughly half of the Army’s 43 active-duty combat brigades are now deployed overseas, Army officials said. A brigade has about 3,500 soldiers.

Pentagon officials worry that among the just over 20 Army brigades left in the United States or at Army bases in Europe and Asia, none has enough equipment and manpower to be sent quickly into combat, except for an armored unit stationed permanently in South Korea, several senior Army officers said.

“We are fully committed right now,” said Col. Charles Hardy of the Forces Command, which oversees Army training and equipping of troops to be sent overseas. “If we had a fully trained-up brigade, hell, it’d be the next one to deploy.”

[snip]

In effect, the Army has become a “just in time” organization: every combat brigade that finishes training is sent back to Iraq or Afghanistan almost immediately. Equipment vital for protecting troops, like armored vehicles, roadside bomb jammers and night vision goggles, is rushed to Iraq as quickly as it is made, officials say.

March 20, 2007 Posted by | America, Bush, Civil War, Government, Iraq, Middle East, National Security, Pentagon, US Military, War, White House | Leave a comment

Four Years Later

What has been accomplished in the last four years? Oh, sure there’s an Iraqi constitution and a “duly elected” parliament, Saddam is dead, and I’m sure somewhere there is a school being painted, but if we were to ask Iraqis and Americans, “Are you better off now than you were four years ago?” what do you think their answer will be?

Four years after this unnecessary war of choice began, the Iraqis are dying by the hundreds every month, and the US is financially unstable with a military that’s caught in the middle of a civil war and near the breaking point, with wounded soldiers overwhelming the system.

The great and grand War on Terror has been used to restrict our freedoms and justify human rights abuses, and no one – with the exception of El Pollo Loco and his crew of cheerleaders and war profiteers – is seeing any sign that things in Iraq will improve.

From Tim Lambon in the New Statesman, embedded with US troops:

It’s hard to describe the noise when a whole cabinet of crockery is emptied on to the floor. Even harder not to shout in indignation when the American soldier who intentionally tipped it forward, until the plates and dishes slid smashing to the floor, says without regret, “Whoops!” and crunches over the shards past the distraught owner. “Cordon and search” they call looking for Sunni insurgents and their arms and explosives. But at what cost to the battle for “hearts and minds”?

The sweep was a co-operative action between Delta Company of the 2nd Battalion 12th Cavalry and the Iraqi Army’s 246th Battalion. The plan was for the Iraqis to lead and the Americans to provide security and back-up. With engines throbbing, the force waited for 45 minutes at the start line for the Iraqis to arrive.

Continue reading

March 19, 2007 Posted by | America, Bush, Cheney, Civil War, Middle East, Oil, Pentagon, Politics, Protest, US Military, War, White House | 2 Comments

Friday Anti-War Song

Teach Peace
— Thomas Alan Connor

It’s hard to place a value
On a setting sun
Or a healthy child walking
And learning how to run
Non-tangible are things
We hold so dear
Like love and hope and friends
Or the shedding of a tear

Teach peace
Everybody we’ve got to teach peace
Teach peace
Everybody we’ve got to teach peace
You know that it’s true

No promises are kept
If we can’t commit
To the cause of oneness
A feeling of bliss
No axis has it’s center
If it can’t decide
Which direction it should go
Because of internal pride

Teach peace
Everybody we’ve got to teach peace
Teach peace
Everybody we’ve got to teach peace
You know that it’s true

Maybe we can see through the lies
And break through the barriers
That cage our lives
It’s not the might of muscle
We need to choose
But more the might of mind
Or peace will lose

Teach peace
Everybody we’ve got to teach peace
Teach peace
Everybody we’ve got to teach peace
Teach peace
Everybody we’ve got to teach peace
Teach peace
We’ve got to teach peace
Everybody we’ve got to teach peace

You know that it’s something we’ve got to do
We’ve got to see it through

March 16, 2007 Posted by | America, Bush, Cheney, Children, Civil War, Government, Iraq, Middle East, Music, Protest, US Military, War, World Peace | 1 Comment