Friday, September 15, 2006
The War Tapes
Though not a post on poetry, I figured this would be a more appropriate forum for this than other blogs I spit electronic spatter at. I watched a film tonight called The War Tapes. For those of you interested politics and more particularly, the modern politics of war, this film is most enlightening. I would recommend it, but with a strong caution in regards to the language ( more a cultural artifact than anything) and some morbid and excessively gory images. The film is a collection of videos shot by a national guard squadron that was stationed in Iraq. It follows them from just before leaving until a few months after their return to the states a year later. The assignment is for the soldiers to escort cargo shipments back and forth daily. The precious cargo is food rations provided by a branch-off company of Haliburton. One soldier openly queries why soldiers were giving their lives for CREAM CORN. He goes on to say that for every meal they feed soldiers, Dick Cheney's company gets 24 US dollars and most soldiers require 2 meals a sitting, earning Dick and co. 48$ per soldier every evening. Even these front line National Guard Soldiers have no choice but to see the business of War as it hits them constantly in the face like bugs on a bike ride through the marsh. The film is filled with little facts like this. The squadron is made up of a number of Bush hecklers and a few pro-Bushies but regardless of politics, the absurdity of this war was apparent to all. Perhaps the most memorable quote is at the end of the movie when a soldier, who couldn't sleep anymore due to his Post traumatic Stress Disorder, said upon returning, "Your D%$# right it's about oil and money!, it better be and we better get our share or we've wasted our time over there!" Yikes. For a peace loving nancy like myself I was blown away by the guiding principles that lead to such a ridiculous comment. Further more, I've always believed that there is no one that wakes up in the morning and says, "I think I'm going to do terrible things today and be evil". I think we are all trying to make sense of our world and do the best we can based on our perceptions of reality. So I question the climate that could foster such a concoction of distorted views and erroneous humanistic reasoning. Most important though, I question what the solution is? or even if there is a solution?