I’ll Be Home for Christmas

That WWII hit from Bing Crosby always brings a tear to the eye of the older crowd, the dwindling set of WWII Veterans and their families.  No doubt my grandmother’s eyes watered-up each time she heard that song. She lost her eldest son in WWI in France. She was a Gold Star Mother and, as such, was transported back to France some years later with the other mothers who lost sons during that Great War, to see the graves of their sons. The ‘war to end all wars.’

This year, many more Veterans will be home for Christmas thanks to the end of the Bush War on Iraq. Just one more Bush War to end before all of the troops in conflict will be looking at the snow and mistletoe and presents on the tree. And not only in their dreams.

As our troops finally exited Iraq a few days ago, the sectarian violence there ramped up, as if we didn’t know it would. The Shia Muslims are now in control thanks to Bush, Cheney, Rice and Rumsfeld’s intervention, and so it is now the turn of the Sunni Muslims to get back at their long-time adversaries.  What was it that we were supposed to bring to Iraq?  Something like democracy? Stability?

Fewer Americans these days ‘believe’ what they heard from the former White House quartet back in 2003; too bad they they weren’t paying more attention to it all back then, but we Americans are easily manipulated, especially by warmongers.  There is already another war murmur echoing in the far-right political wings – even before all of our troops from Iraq have come home for Christmas. Bomb, bomb Iran. Yes, that murmur.

When will we ever learn? Korea. Vietnam. Iraq. Afghanistan.

I wonder how many WWII veterans and widows of veterans are jumping on the Bomb Iran bandwagon? Or Vietnam Veterans? The further distance from the conflict, the more clear the vision of war-making. My grandmother died a month after Eisenhower took the Oath of Office. I still remember her saying, “Maybe he’ll be a good president.” Although a staunch Democrat all of her life, my grandmother hoped that this new Republican might be wise enough to keep us from further wars.

Sadly for the families of 4485 members of the U.S. Military who served in Iraq, there will be an empty place set at this year’s Christmas table. Four thousand prayers of remembrance. Four thousand aching hearts.

And for what end? What did they die for?  Freedom? Democracy? End of a dictator? Four thousand, four hundred eighty-five. These will not be home for Christmas, not even in their dreams.


5 thoughts on “I’ll Be Home for Christmas

  1. Hello Muddy,
    In the early 2000’s I was a Regional Sales Manager with a company and had my products in military equipment. I remember well during a meeting, a couple of Generals from the Pentagon saying before the invasion at the start of W. Bush’s Iraq War, that John Nash’s “Game Theory” had been applied and no matter how you played out the variables, Iraq imploded to some level in the long run. This also projected many scenarios that Iran would have a much bigger influence based on Religion within Iraq in the long run.

    Still the people cheered and the bands played on.

    I know Microdot will like this part when I take an old 1970’s song and modify it a bit to:

    “W. Bush’s Iraq War, Huh!! What is it good for? Absolutely NOTHING!!!” Uh Huh…Say It Again!!

  2. Still the people cheered and the bands played on.

    Indeed they did and anyone suggesting otherwise was a traitor to America!! I wonder how many still believe that?

  3. My heart goes out to these families this holiday season.
    Merry Christmas to everyone…………………….

    Mud- Even us young punks shed a tear when we hear that song. Great song.

  4. Hello J.O.B.
    As you well know that I too have a soft spot for veterans as I have known too many good men who did not come home…not only physically but mentally too. They just do not fit into society anymore.

    Aged beyond his years,
    He has seen things no one should.
    He has left those who would understand,
    The Band of Brother Hood.

    He’s supposed to start a normal life,
    But he won’t remember what one is.
    He will try to start where he left,
    The home where his parents live.

    Life passed him by when he left,
    Old friends have a life of their own,
    Everything is gone he use to know,
    He will feel lost and all alone.

    A wasted life does not only have to mean that they came home in a box.

    1. Correct, Engineer. Although I only focused on the dead military, there are tens of thousands of returning Iraqi Veterans who will ‘sit’ at the table tomorrow missing parts of their bodies; others will sit there not fully knowing what is going on. Still others are still in a VA hospital, too damaged to join their families.

      Our local newspaper re-printed the ‘Mission Accomplished’ photo of GW Bush standing on the U.S.S. Lincoln declaring that the ‘major military operation in Iraq has ended.’ May, 2003. Sure it was! Today’s headline above the photo reads, “The Real Mission Accomplished.”

      What is so terribly sad beyond the deaths and severe injuries of this Bush War, is that there is still a large clutch of right-wingers who actually still ‘believe’ that this war needed to be waged and that the deaths, injuries and huge loss of treasury was justified. They’d do it all again.

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