I can only hope
February 19, 2004
I hope Jay Pate is right and I’m wrong. I hope war really is the way to turn the Middle East into a harmonious, democratic region and the U.S. will be credited with this wonderful feat. I hope the history books won’t describe America’s first pre-emptive strike as the event that led to civil war in Iraq, resulting in the turnover from Saddam’s secular rule to Islamic fundamentalists, plunging Iraqi society into a heretofore unknown repressive state.
I hope the Iraqi people will stop comparing the U.S. occupation disparagingly with the former regime. I hope they decide that it’s not so bad living without electricity, having their streets barricaded with barbed wire and patrolled by tanks, and their families terrorized by U.S. troops conducting violent home invasions in the middle of the night. I hope the men who were rounded up, taken to prison, humiliated, abused, and held without charges or notification to relatives of their whereabouts, will not be recruited by terrorist organizations to exact revenge on our soldiers or the American homeland.
I hope my friend’s children will grow up to enjoy freedom and prosperity like Iraq has never known, and will forgive the horrors they endured when the U.S. invaded Iraq prepared to protect the oil, but not prepared to protect the public infrastructure or the civilians.
I hope that G.W. Bush didn’t desecrate the office of the presidency by lying about the reason for going to war, and the WMDs and a plan to use them on the U.S. are found, and America is vindicated in the eyes of the world. I hope the real reason for the invasion and occupation of Iraq is not lucrative contracts and corporate colonization. I hope the relatives of all of the soldiers and civilians who died in Iraq believe it was worth it.
I hope the U.S. ousts every brutal regime and liberates the entire population of the planet, and the war on terrorism succeeds and every bad guy mends their ways and the world praises America for establishing peace on earth.
I hope then I can go back to my former state of unaware bliss which was shattered on Sept. 11 by a terrorist attack that I hope was not due to the U.S. government’s 60-year history of meddling in Middle East affairs. I hope my awakening from selfish ignorance to the responsibilities of citizenship an compassion for humanity at this point in my life is just a case of becoming, as Jay puts it: “a delusional yes-man of the antiwar cult who’s found a sense of religious purpose in the cause celebre du jour.”
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Yes, it would be absolutely wonderful if Mr. Pate turns out to be entirely right and I am proven utterly wrong. Until then, I can only hope.