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Operation New Dawn

Saturday, 20 February 2010 10:57
At Arlington, Army Capt. Shane T. Adcock is laid to rest, 10/29/06. (photo: Doug Mills/NYT)

At Arlington, Army Capt. Shane T. Adcock is laid to rest, 10/29/06. (photo: Doug Mills/NYT)

"The very word 'war', therefore, has become misleading. It would probably be accurate to say that by becoming continuous war has ceased to exist.... War is Peace."
George Orwell, 1984

f I forget everything else in my life, I will never forget the night I walked in my front door with my dogs, Buster and Chewy, and saw the three military officers standing in my living room.

I knew the moment I saw them that Casey was dead. It doesn't take a genius to put that equation together. On one side of the equal sign is your recently deployed soldier-son, and on the other side are three Army officers standing in your house looking like they would rather be just about anywhere else.

I didn't go to sleep that night, or indeed, for a few nights. I didn't want to go to sleep and have to wake up after brief oblivion to the realization that my oldest son was dead: Killed in a war that, like most wars, never should have been fought in the first place. Casey's number came up and he became just one more in a long line of humans killed for profit. Casey certainly wasn't the first, and he certainly won't be the last, but my first-born preceded his parents and three of his grandparents in death.

It seemed like within minutes of the notification at 9pm on 04 April 2004 our house was filled with friends, and the tears, screams, questions and memories flowed freely. Around 6am, I went outside to sit on the porch on my porch swing. Through my tears, shock and grief, I could see my neighborhood begin to awaken. People coming outside to pick up their papers or head for work. I wanted to scream at them: "Don't you know my son is dead? How can you pretend like the world is normal?" The world has never been "normal," but I have lived in an even more surreal version since Casey was killed.

Today, I found out that the "operation" that killed my son is over. "Operation Iraqi Freedom" got its name after the "great" Powers That Be figured out that "Operation Iraqi Liberation" stood for "OIL." Now, Obama's SecDef, Robert Gates, has changed that benign name to an even more New-Agey, Sweeter-Than-Honey name: "Operation New Dawn." Doesn't that sound nice? Who doesn't like New Dawns? Except, perhaps, the people of Falluja who were brutalized in a Marine siege back in 2004 that was inappropriately entitled Operation New Dawn.

When Obama first took over the trappings of Empire, he changed the name of the "Global War on Terror" the GWOT to: OCO, or Overseas Contingency Operation - doesn't that sound benevolent, too? Like the US Empire is involved in Overseas Aid. You have a need for "Aid?" We have a "contingency" for you!

Illegal invasions and occupations are now called: "Interventions," as if the US and its allies are sweeping in and saving a country or society from a drug or alcohol problem, when clearly it is The Empire that is suffering from an addiction to mass murder and pillage.

It doesn't matter what the US decides to call its "Operations." Part of us will reject the propaganda, and part of us will embrace it, wanting very desperately to believe that our country is not a rogue state and/or that Obama is not as bad, or worse, than Bush.

Innocent people still die and our soldiers are still victims, whether they come home dead or alive, whatever the war criminals in DC decide to label their crimes as.

It doesn't matter for me either. One day, whether voluntarily, or by force, these "Operations," "Contingencies," "Interventions," or "Crimes against humanity" will eventually end, but my oldest son will be always be dead. There's absolutely no way in Hell for The Empire to euphemize that reality to make it any less painful, or easier for me to bear.

Accountability for Casey's death won't make the pain go away either, but it may prevent other mothers and families from having to suffer from our nation's continuous wars. your social media marketing partner


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+6 # Guest 2010-02-20 14:35
War is not the answer. I participated in a Peace Vigil for several years and was convinced President Obama would move toward ending the war in Iraq and Afghanistan.

That has not happened. Please read "Three Cups of Tea", and be convinced more violence in Afghanistan won't work.

Our money worries would cease if we spent the billions that have been dedicated to wars on people.

My heart goes out to all families that have lost their loved ones to the follies of war.
+5 # Guest 2010-02-20 14:55
Thanks for your insight, Cindy, and for your sacrifices.
+5 # Guest 2010-02-20 15:44
I responded to this, but am not sure it went through. I feel so strongly about the wars, I am responding again.

I was a part of a Peace Vigil for several years and was convinced that President Obama would end the war in Iraq and work toward a peaceful end to the war in Afghanistan.

This has not happened and I am distressed that the billions of dollars spent on the wars isn't being utilized for health care, education, jobs, infrastucture and so many other areas that are causing so many to suffer.

My heart goes out to all families that lost loved ones in Iraq and Afghanistan. These wars must end and our country must begin taking care of it's citizens.
0 # Guest 2010-02-21 01:31
One day the US will not be able fun it's interventions due to lac of $$$ and go the way of all previous empires that overextended.
0 # Guest 2010-02-21 07:07
I hardly have WORDS for what I want to say´´´´´When Obama war running...he always said he would go into Afghanistan and that was where the REAL TROUBLE was,,,,,I thought he was TOTALLY WRONG----but then he was so right and good in so many ways that there was no question of who to vote for....
After he got the NOBEL PEACE prize...I felt we had a chance to see a CHANGE--a REAL CHANCE FOR PEACE. I wrote to him----PLEASE, PLEASE, Stop the war ! But he let us down and even sent in MORE TROOPS.....It now seems impossible for any American president to fight our incredible WAR MACHINE.......W e are a nasty, sick nation.......Ho w do we, as an entire NATION, change our ideals & dreams ?? WE need massive therapy ! We need a HEALTH CARE system that offers therapy for negative, violent, angry, uncaring people.....and plenty of incentives so that they go into it.
+1 # Guest 2010-02-21 14:23
Mrs. Sheehan the leaders, elected or otherwise, do the bidding of the 1/10th of 1%, referred to as the "elite"! I admire
your courage, your amazing stamina in standing up to the
psychopathic "elite" empire builders that place profit/power before the well being of humanity. The Dutch it seems are coming to their senses & the majority of the government want to pullout of the "war"! Your voice of conscience is being heard around the globe.
God bless.
0 # Guest 2010-02-22 14:29
Thanks for putting your voice out there again, Cindy. I'm so sorry about Casey. His loss makes me want to work harder for Peace. I am so tired of our country going more and more bankrupt both in lives lost and money spent by continually funding wars. To find out more about how much sway those who would have us go to war have had over the last 50 years, please read James W. Douglass's new book: "JFK and the Unspeakable - Why He Died & Why it Matters." It's really eyeopening. Peace to you all.

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