by Shawn Wathen, Hamilton
Since you opted to send me an email lauding your actions to commemorate the thirteen US military personnel killed in Kabul, I am entitled to respond.
I, unlike you, served on active duty in the US military, and early on understood that we were mere pawns in a political power game. Afghanistan, like Vietnam, was sold as war or freedom in an era of international terror. In reality, it was an unfettered, blood-drunk jingoistic plan to remake the world based on the myth of American superiority.
At a cost of trillions of dollars, hundreds of thousands of innocent lives, the ramifications of twenty years of senseless war with no goal other than perpetual war will be felt for decades.
You are just one of the most recent perpetrators of death, that began after 9/11. You and your colleagues, past and present, both Republican and Democrat, slavishly following the destructive lead of four different administrations, providing no sensible alternative to the standard response of war, replete with our own uses of terror, renditions,torture, and detention without charge.
While our country burns with it’s right wing terror, dramatically illustrated by the events of January 6th (which you and your party try to minimize), you seek to distract us by fomenting a xenophobic fear of Others.
I am certain that you and your cosponsors are patting yourselves on the back by this hollow gesture of commendation. It won’t, however, wash the blood from your hands.
More appropriately, an apology should be given to the thirteen killed in Kabul, as well as all the others who died in this tragedy turned farce–both US and Afghani.
As John Kerry said in his opposition to another disastrous US war, who will be the last to die for a mistake? Sadly, the tragic deaths of those thirteen, to say nothing of the others who died on that day, won’t be the last. As a humanitarian crisis sweeps across Afghanistan, countless more will die due to our folly.
As I write this letter, the US military acknowledged that a military strike in Kabul killed ten innocent civilians, seven of whom were children. No insurgents. Does anyone really wonder why the Taliban swept to victory so easily?
Tell me, Senator, what congressional baubles do you suggest we give these victims’ grieving families?