Thursday, February 08, 2007

Swampscott Loses Another to Iraq

Swampscott, my hometown of barely 3 1/2 square miles, has lost a second soldier to Iraq - Jennifer Harris. My sister just sent me a frantic email about it because Jennifer went to school with my sister for seven years.

"She was a great kid,” said Swampscott town veterans agent Jim Schultz. “This was her third tour. She was scheduled to come home next week.”
That's what happens. People in uniform are going back for tour after tour, stuck on the sands of Iraq for months at a time. At least during the Vietnam War people were only forced one tour, these so-called volunteer corps are getting a whole lot more than they bargained for. Yet, Iraq isn't even the daily headline. From my sister's email: "It's hard to believe sometimes we are at war until it hits home."

Well, Swampscott now knows plenty about it. It's a small town and everyone is affected by these losses. I can't speak for anyone else in the town, but I say it's time our populace stop paying in the form of the blood of its young so George Bush can save a few cheap bucks on the blood that fuels Exxon Mobile. It's time Bush's foray into the Middle East end.

First Jarrod Raymond, now Jennifer Harris. Who's the next person George Bush is going to sentence to death for a war he chose, a war he lied about? Who will be the last person to die for George Bush's mistake?


The Globe has a front-paged story on Jennifer Harris - and a larger story on how the US is having a problem with keeping 'copters in the air. If they can't keep them safe, they should be grounded.


Anonymous said...

You do a great disservice to the memory and brave service of our soldiers who paid the ultimate sacrifice for a mission in which they believed--if you do not have an understanding of this war, I suggest you review history and read about Hitler and his reign of terror throughout Europe--and what his ultimate goals were. First Europe, then the countries to our north and south, and then US....if you fail to see the evil that we are at war with that happens to be taking place in Iraq, I suggest you open your eyes. I too am a Swampscott resident and my heart aches for the losses we have suffered, as well as for those other 3000+ losses in this war--but I see the worth of it; I only hope someday you will also. Clear your head of the hatred you have for George Bush and understand what this war is...please. It came home to us on the morning of September 11, 2001, but that was not the first attack on Americans, just the first to take place on our soil and it woke a sleeping giant, however temporarily. On the morning of June 6, 1944, we lost 4000 men on that first day of the invasion of Normandy to rid Europe of nazi imperialism. During WWII, we averaged a loss of 2000 per week. I will continue to support this war with the understanding of what is at stake should we lose it. Germany did not attack us but we recognized our enemy and took it head-on. God bless the brave that give their all in defending our lives and our freedoms here at home. Sooner or later, this war will come home again. What side will you be on?

Anonymous said...

I must correct my earlier comment--September 11, 2001 wAs not the first attack oh our soil - WTC 93 was - the first attack on the World Trade Center which took place on February 26, 1993. At that time, workers within the towers claimed it felt as if an airplane had hit the towers - little did they know that only eight years later, that is exactly what would happen. Please open your eyes and not only recognize your enemy but understand he wants you, and me, and western civilization to die.

Ryan Adams said...

The war in Iraq has nothing to do with Nazis, Germany or the 1940s. We were primarily in WW2 to save our allies, who wouldn't exist today as currently constituted if not for our help. Iraq posed no threat to us, their neighbors or anyone.

However, Iran is a far greater threat and our actions in Iraq have emboldened them. How sad it is that their influence will now create another state in the middle east where the laws of sharia will likely take place... there's no doubt that many in that country will suffer because of it. Our actions in Iraq made that happen - they also have sparked violence that has resulted in the death of approximately 100,000 Iraqis and the displacement of literally millions.

If you cared about the fact that Saddam Hussien was killing his own people, perhaps you should have spoke up about it when George Bush Sr. and Saddam were allies instead of foes? When Don Rumsfeld shook hands with that former despot? When America provided the chemical and biological agents which created Iraq's WMD program.

Most importantly, Iraq had nothing to do with 9/11. Nothing. Nothing. Nothing. Al Qaeda and Saddam Hussien were enemies.

Lastly, remember that criticizing a policy doesn't equate to doing "a great disservice" to our soldiers. I want them home, out of harm's way... you want them to stay there, suffer, be maimed and die for a cause that doesn't even exist and was completely fabricated by the Bush Administration.

Anonymous said...

Listen. The Iraq/terror link cannot be made anymore. To anonymous writer. I'm sorry, your valididty is out the window, although i agree with you, that we must find reason to honor the lives of these brave people. And to you, Mr. Adams..what were you thinking saying grounding helicopters? Seriously? Do you have any idea how much the campaign in Iraq relies on these people? do you think any member of the military has saved more lives than the Air force pilot, or the Marine, Army, Navy chopper pilots? Do you think any one in IRaq right now, if they heard you say ground the helicopters would consider you to be legitimate on any topic? Yes i understand it is frustrating, war is hell. But guess what, people a lot smarter than you decided the country has interests in the region, and we're there. The conversation shouldn't be about taking people home, it should be about making them safer. Grounded Air support, would ruin any and all progress made. I'm appauled that you could take that stance, and please, don't ever say that the loss of others is in vain. All i know is i've watched my friend lay in state, i've seen his coffin draped with the American flag, and i've heard 21 rounds fired over a silent cemetary. And i'll leave this earth right now, before i let anyone, anyone, tell me what that kid did for our country was in vain. Even if the cause of war is questionable, he died for his men, his brothers in arms. He died for a cause he believed: Bringing his boys home. That, Mr. Adams, is what a leader does, and that is THE cause, that we look at. "there is no greater love than this, that he lay down his life for a friend".

Ryan Adams said...

The definition of insanity, according to someone who was far more intelligent than anyone who planned or led the war on iraq (albert einstein) is doing the same thing over and over again, expecting different results.

If Helocopters are going in the air and getting shot down at very very high rates - and it's safe to say that's true - than our current strategy with them is flawed. Grounding them is the only sane thing to do, until a new strategy can be developed that will protect them.

However, ultimately they need to be sent home - along with our troops. The war in Iraq was based on a LIE. We had no right to invade that country and need to leave as soon as possible. Your friend, it's sad to say, did die for a lost cause. I'm sorry if that offends you, but the cause he was fighting for - Iraq - is lost. It was lost before we got there. He may have had other motives, but Iraq was never about defense of this country - it was about stealing another country's resources. That's not right and I'll never support it.

Ryan Adams said...

PS: Iraq has been an utter failure on every account. Mocking my intelligence, suggesting that the war was planned by "far" more intelligent people, isn't really a strong argument on your behalf right now. Is it?

President Bush is known for many things - intelligence isn't one of them. I'd make a bet I'd score with an higher IQ any day of the week. lol.

Anonymous said...

that statement proves that you don't care about the soldiers. all you care about is pinning blame on republicans. Grow a heart, and maybe get educated on warfare because this proves you know all... about the ways wars are played out. Give up.

joe said...

I really have to agree here. If you grounded close air support, I hope you're ready to kiss the rest of the people from Swampscott goodbye, because people would be getting killed left and right without it. There isn't too much you can do to stop every RPG or bullet from hitting a helicopter -- no amount of tactical changes can stop that--, but to ground them would be a tactical flaw that would warrant the word "insanity."

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