Wednesday, March 26, 2003

Now that the war has started, a lot of people who were opposed to war are now saying they support it, now that we're in it. They say they support it because of the troops are out there now, we should support them. But should we support them by supporting a war that leaves them out there? From all accounts right now, we're heading into hand to hand combat. We haven't done hand to hand combat in 20 years. It was just so much easier to bomb everyone.

I have to laugh at the newscasters saying the Iraqis are playing dirty and not obiding by the Geneva Convention: ambushes, fake serrenders. In the short, they're not playing the same game. And as much as we'd all like to think we can "control" war, that's not really possible. We are entering another country. We are entering someone's home. And the people loyal to Saddam really don't have a future if they lose, so when they fight they have nothing to lose. You think they really have an alternative? If the loyal forces win, they stay in power, if they lose they can face all sorts of human rights trials, they have no power, the new government will do what they can to prosecute them. And you think they'll play fair?

It's getting ugly. By all signs even the people of Iraq want no part of this war. In one sense they're not totally for their own government at the same time they're not running happily into the arms of the US military and surrendering or taking up arms against their own soldiers. These are a people who are stuck between an oppressive government and the people who have been bombing them and enforcing sanctions for the last 10 years. When most people have a choice they tend to stay with the status quo regardless of how insane because they're used to it, they know how to survive in the old system. There's a lot of fear in the new system.

Yet it's frustrating being the peace people who have been taken hostage by our own government into war games we do not want to play. It's difficult to continue "living" our lives here when there's a war going on on our behalf. I must say I have a sense of guilt of having this priviledge. Which brings me to this website with a free brochure on how to keep sane:

This is our war yes. And at this point it seems as if there might not be anything we can do. One thing we can do, is to stay well and healthy, because the time for us to do something will come. Maybe it's by being with others to cope and understand like our families and our children. Maybe it's continuing to join protests, demonstrations, candle vigils. We must continue to do what we do because there is no clear answer. The only thing for sure is that there will be a world after this war and whoever is still here, will be the ones to build it.

When 9-11 hit, I taught kali class. I had had some IM conversations with my teacher. He too continued with his class that night. It was important. We may have known people who died, we may not have known anyone. What we did know is that we're still alive and because of that we must keep living, training, practicing. I told my students that I will conduct class, but that they should go wherever they may be needed or needed to be.

Certainly take the time to take care of yourself: mourn, cry, deal with the emotions. I have to have faith in my higher power that so long as I am living, there is something left for me to do. And the only way to be ready for it, is to keep living keep going keep surviving until my time is called. The world doesn't stop, as much as we would like it to.

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