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Monday, June 19, 2006

Today I heard a report from NPR about the Iraq war, particularly about an incident from a corps in the backwoods region of the Sunni Triangle. These soldiers get IEDs every day, sustain mortar fire 3 days running. They are common, and they say it amazes them that it only reaches the news when 'a roadside bomb goes off somewhere in Baghdad.' They apparently had 7 that week.

In this report they iced 6-8 "MAM"s, which stands for 'military aged men'. Not because they had weapons, not because they committed a crime, but because they showed up from a mosque after an AC-130 gunship began firing at a roadside bomb.

First, I'd hit it from the hum turret at 30 yards and rely on the twin metal shields. Second, I would NOT call in a ground strike to kill 6-8 men who showed up after a gunship started shooting. That is homicide and nothing less. I can imagine they were in the mosque praying, possibly with their women, and came out to see what the shooting was. Just being a military aged man is not a crime punishable by execution. How many of you listeners or readers are MAMs? Do you know any? Would they kill you? These people made no 'sudden moves', had no evidence of armament, nothing. Dead.

I realized while listening to this report that the insurgency in Iraq is a war of families against the US military. Extended families. This is a fued that we've started and are sticking around to fight. Call in the UN, they are a neutral party. We dumped weapons on the area, came in and searched through women's clothes in front of families, and turned our backs. This is shame, especially in that part of the world, and the only cure is more cowbell... I mean, kill them.

Or peace.

The enemy we're fighting in Iraq is 'discontent'. Not Ho Chih Minh, not Kim Jung Il. There is no man we can kill to wipe this thing out. We're fighting ghosts.


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