| No Comments | No TrackBacks

At the beginning of October, 2001, shortly after the towers fell, I left for a long-planned river rafting trip in the Grand Canyon. For two weeks our group floated down the Colorado River, almost entirely occupied with running rapids, camp life, and glorious scenery. I had thoughts about the attacks, but they were quiet, without reinforcement from a constant stream of news.

On the morning of the last river day we landed at Diamond Creek, loaded all the equipment on the waiting trucks, and took the long dirt road out to Route 66 and thence to Flagstaff, to rejoin the group mind.

It was a portal to a different reality. The anthrax scare was raging. The media leaked hysteria; uncertainty was everywhere; the national mood was paranoia. My charge of calm, peace, and good will dissipated within a couple of days.

We called it an act of war, but it was an unusual war -- a conflict between an elephant and a venomous insect. We used the phrase "war on terror", a term coined by the Bush administration. But soon Bush, Cheney, and company conspired to start a real war. They conjured a scenario that would justify an attack on Iraq, then scrambled to find evidence to support that scenario.

Paranoia strikes deep. Into your heart it will creep. Starts when you're always afraid. Step out of line, the men come, and take you away.

The United States worked itself into a frenzy of fear, and we stepped out of line -- we started a real war -- but there was nobody big enough to take us away.

I remain amazed that anyone could take the claims of the Bush administration seriously - the machinations were so obvious - yet to this day we politely ignore the sad reality that the leaders of the US government conspired to start a war that had no objective justification. It may be that they were as motivated by fear as the population at large, but a strong smell of far less honorable intent remains -- intentions that merit outrage, contempt, anger, and criminal prosecution. I can only hope that history will judge correctly.


Recent Entries

Find recent content on the main index or look in the archives to find all content.