Tuesday, December 08, 2009

War Distraction 101: Call Tiger

How do you divert attention from an endless war in Afghanistan? Call Tiger Woods. It seems we are all too busy counting mistresses than troops being sent overseas. Less than a week, and our attention is diverted.

Um, hello? People? Focus. Let's get focused. Who the hell cares about Tiger Woods. He's a golfer. I cannot even call a golfer an athlete- look at John Daley. He hits a little ball really well and makes a ton of money. Great. He's cheated on his wife. Not so great. But really, compared to 21,000 troops gone earlier this year and an additional 30,000 troops that is putting a major stress on our military, is it at all important?

News at 11.

Oh, wait, it's not on the news at eleven. It's not on the news at all. Just Tiger's mistresses, paraded out one by one. During the Vietnam war, we were given nightly updates. Of course, they were all lies, but at least it was being covered.

I've been challenged on Bilerico that I do not know what's really going on. Perhaps that is true. Perhaps no one really knows what's going on over there, except the soldiers themselves.

Perhaps we will have to wait for the history books to outline our mistakes, missteps and war crimes. There has never been a war that was perfect or completely noble. There never will be.

Another story- oh, yes, I am full of them, feel free to question my honesty. As a writer, I'm always listening- it's my job. I was sitting on a plane recently, going out to meet my wife for my anniversary. The gentleman next to me worked in construction- specifically, in Iraq and Afghanistan. He was the head of a part of a company that did a lot of work around the world. I asked him what he thought, thinking this sixty-ish year old white guy would be all pro involvement.

He wasn't.

I've been there a lot, he said, over the years. We need to get out. We will never fix what is going on over there because we don't understand their culture.

He went on to say he had personally made a lot of money doing the work, but the cost was too high. He was there the day of a huge explosion in Baghdad (I'm sorry, I do not remember what he said was blown up). Almost none of his crew showed up the next day.

Too scared, he said. I don't blame them. I was, too.

Maybe I don't know diddly squat about the war.

Maybe none of us do.

It is time, though, to ask hard questions and listen to those who have been there.

Not the latest on Tiger Woods.


Blogger J said...


I couldn't agree with you more. And I have been there. In construction. With the US Army Corps of Engineers. I talked until I was blue in the face about how we were not going about things in the right way. How doing things the way we do them in America wasn't going to work there. But I was reminded time and again that little girls don't know what they're talking about. Well, I might not be a soldier and I might not know anything about warfare but I've been in development work before and I understand pretty well that people who have no food or money are going to be on the side of those who provide it regardless of which side is "right" or "wrong." The taliban give them money and guns and a means to provide for their families. What are we offering?

5:08 PM  
Blogger Ms. Moon said...

Amen. And another. Amen.

6:30 PM  
Blogger Sue J said...

Iraq Veterans Against the War has a website where anyone who wants to know more about what's going on in Iraq and Afghanistan can hear from the soldiers themselves.

But people have to take the action to learn the facts. I fear we are really turning into those people in Wall E ....

10:44 AM  
Anonymous Morgan said...

If you are waiting for the mistakes to be spelled out in the history books, you'll be waiting a long time. Remember Chimpy and Blam Blam are rewriting history of their administration as we speak.

10:58 AM  
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