flickr: Sylvia Westenbroek
“Twenty-two years of mental tears
Cries a suicidal Vietnam vet
Who fought a losing war on a foreign shore
To find his country didn’t want him back
Their bullets took his best friend in Saigon
Our lawyers took his wife and kids, no regrets
In a time I don’t remember, in a war he can’t forget
He cried, ‘Forgive me for what I’ve done there
Cause I never meant the things I did.’”
“Something to Believe In” by Poison
I was listening to this song a few days ago and the part about what the veteran said towards the end of the second verse I shared here has caught my attention and stuck with me. “Forgive me for what I’ve done there/ ‘Cause I never meant the things I did..”
The Reality of War.
My father was a Vietnam veteran in the United States Marine Corps. He fought for his country in that war and he even felt that it was a war that we should have never been in. He told me first hand experiences about fighting in that war, what he and his fellow Marines had to do. He also told me about his welcome home–about being spit on, threatened, and treated terribly just for trying to survive a war that we as a country should have never been in.
Our history lessons cover what was done over there by our troops, but never what they went through. Dad used to tell me that there were children that would come up to him or his fellow Marines and they would be crying, begging for help–with bombs strapped to them. Or the children and women that were used as human shields. It is endless the atrocities that were witnessed by many of our military members in Vietnam and in other areas that have been war torn.
During the time of the Vietnam war, the returning military members were called baby killers and spat on for their “crimes” that they did over there. Yes, there was one army unit that did literally rape and pillage a village in Vietnam and they were all brought to justice afterwards. While there was some that did do horrible things for the pleasure of it, many did what they had to do just to survive. It is so easy to sit and pass judgment on the ones that go into these areas while those passing judgment are never in those places and most likely never will have to be.
But, here is a question for you, my readers:
Should the military be blamed–or the powers that be?
The Spiritual Aspect.
“For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.”
If you have discussed anything spiritual with me, then you know I often reference this darkness that is in the world as an entity but I refuse to give it a name for personal beliefs. For this writing, the personal beliefs are not relevant.
This darkness has to feed off of something, though, and I think one of the main things is war–especially war that is based upon hatred of someone else. I also do not believe that those who are actually in the wars are evil–but I believe the ones over them, the rulers, the authorities, use these people as pawns and human chess pieces.
I say that because, oftentimes, the people of the warring countries are fed propaganda about the evils of the other side. This is used to create an “us versus them” mentality and a feeling of solidarity among the people and within the military. Like what was done with our most current wars, for instance. The Twin Towers fell because of a terrorist attack, and we, somehow, as a country, end up going to war, first with Afghanistan and then Iraq. Propaganda has been spread against Muslims, screaming of the evil that is Islam and how Islam is the greatest threat to the peace of the world; and the ironic thing is, the same thing is being spread to these countries where the fringe Islamists (the extreme ones) are in power–only it is being said about Americans and Christians.
This is not a battle of Christian against Muslim or American against Middle Easterner–this is just another tactic to divide the world’s people and to cause strife, and to spread hate and fear so that a few may remain in power. And many of us are playing into it because of our under evolved part of our brain.
The Biological Aspect.
Within the human brain, there are two parts. One is the upper part, the mammal part of our brain and it is highly evolved. It is the one where we are able to reason out problems, critically analyze, learn, socialize, and function in day to day society. But there is another part underneath that that is pure animal instinct and it is where our instinct to survive, procreate, eat, and so forth reside. It is also the one where flight or fight comes in.
With many military members, they are trained to let this part of their brain to take over so that they are better able to survive in conditions that they can be placed in. They are also trained to use their highly evolved brain with it to reason out the best solution of how to survive, and to analyze the situation. In Vietnam, Iraq, and Afghanistan, when they were put in situations where they had no choice but to survive somehow, someway.
It is done with full knowledge by those that train military and those over them.
And it is also done to the citizenry by having us to shut down our highly evolved brains and to instead just react to something that we perceive as a threat–which is often what the media tells us are threats.
The Nature of War.
The nature of war is not holy. There is no holy crusade or anything else. It is a tool used by corrupt men so that they may stay in power and that they may try and create their own personal empires in the world. And we allow them to whenever we respond to hate with hate, anger with anger, and when we refuse to understand. That is why we need to reach out in love and in peace.