Above: Taken from CNN, a photo of Maj. Gen. Jeffery Hammond after apologizing to local leaders in Radhwaniya, Iraq for a soldier in his command having used the Koran for target practice.
Dylan C. Lathrop writes: And so the story goes. A story about the ignorance of the American mind (at times) that leads us to undo what little progress (if any) has been made in a region we should have never entered in the fashion we did. I feel as though this story is such a personal and tragic metaphor for the larger scope of the U.S. military invading and occupying Iraq. As the soldier who committed this heinous act stated himself, “My actions were shortsighted, very reckless and irresponsible,
but in my heart [the actions] were not malicious.”
How apropos. I feel those words could be uttered by any of our political leaders who initiated this long and ghastly war. The saddest part of that thinking is that we will most likely never get that small token of an apology and reasoning from our leaders.
The Iraqi people, the region as a whole, will never get to hear those words pushed from the salty lips of the American government that had gone in there with the same shortsightedness that this soldier had shown.
It should be said, I am just a 21 year old student who has never touched a firearm, never held a position of power, and never been on either end of the horror’s of a ruthless dictator, or that of an occupying force. I do have a conscience though,
and it tears me up knowing that these people are meant to represent both myself and my fellow citizens who are much more compassionate and understanding than the world will ever perceive us to be, considering the actions and tragedies of these
past five years.
The world is a heart. Let’s not put stakes on it.