News, notes, and observations from the James River Valley in northern South Dakota with special attention to reviewing the performance of the media--old and new. E-Mail to

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

The war on Iraq rages on in the U.S.

Moline, Ill.--As I noted in a previous post, the war on Iraq was evident in stops I made along the way from South Dakota to Illinois. Around here it is the elephant in the room--and I use that cliche with all the symbolism it can carry.

Saturday morning as I approached the main turn off from the expressway to a sprawling shopping mall, the intersection was lined with people holding signs that tallied the number of dead and injured American soldiers and the number of Iraqis killed and maimed.

A friend who served in the military the same time I did spotted a pickup in a parking lot while we were chatting that carried a bumper stick that said support our troops by supporting Bush and his war on terror. My friend fumed over the absurdity of supporting a leader who tosses away the lives of soldiers as if they are used nose tissues. My friend said that John McCain got it right on the Letterman Show when he slipped up and called them wasted lives. My friend spoke of the President and Vice President sending out the same propaganda they did in preparation for declaring war on Iraq. They are insisting that Iran will start World War III, and they are using the phony nuclear weapon scam again. I don't think we can wait for a year to get these maniacs out of office, he said.

On a college campus I drove through, a young woman handed me a flyer through the open window. (It was 80 degrees Sunday.) It invited me to join a huge war protest to be held in Chicago later this month. There was a sense of urgency in the flyer.

Still as I read news accounts and blogs coming out of South Dakota, I see that some people think the war is going well and is on the way to success--whatever the hell that means. The New Yorker this week has a lead article pointing out that the ultimate occupiers of Iraq will be Iraqis, and they want us out now, and have wanted us out for some time.

This next month will show some concerted resistance to continuing the war on Iraq. Maybe reason, instead of Orwellian connivance and war propaganda, can prevail.

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Aberdeen, South Dakota, United States