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Christian Dewar

As our nation girds itself for war and the expenditure of the lives of our sons and daughters and the wealth of this country, it should be pointed out that the architects of this new slaughter are a cabal of little souls that avoided the draft when they could have served in the jungles and rice paddies of Vietnam.

Despite a year and a half waiting list for the Texas National Guard, George W. Bush was accepted on the day he applied. He was allowed to enter flight training despite the lowest possible scores for flight aptitude. He was assigned an obsolete plane which was being fazed out of commission, assuring that he would not serve in South East Asia. He had many unexplained absences. (Vietnam vets have offered substantial rewards to anyone who can prove that Bush did serve at one post he claims to have been assigned to. See awolbush.com). He was permanently grounded after refusing to take a physical exam which included drug testing. He appears to have gone AWOL during the last 17 months of his committment. But as Molly Ivins has pointed out, no enemy aircraft penetrated Texas air space during his tenure.

Dick Cheney received five deferments. When asked why he didn't enter the service, he claimed that he had "other priorities". Other chickenhawks who dodged the draft but thirst for war include Newt Gingrich, Ken Starr, Trent Lott, Bill Bennett, Dick Armey, Tom Delay (He claimed that he would have gone except all of the slots were filled with blacks and other minorities), Frank Gaffney, Richard Perle, Paul Wolfowitz, Jeb Bush, Dennis Hastert, Marc Racicot, Charles Krauthammer, Bill O'Reilly, Rush Limbaugh (he had anal cysts), Karl Rove, Phil Gramm, Elliot Abrams, John Bolton, Ted Olsen, Clarence Thomas, John Ashcroft, Scalia, etc.

A website designed by a Vietnam Vet lists many more of these heros. (see the New Hampshire Gazzette's Chickenhawk Database at nhgazette.com). Members of Congress are contemplating reinstating the draft. During the Gulf War, only two children of Senators and Congressman served in the military there. The fighting and dying will be reserved for our children. Like Vietnam, the troops in this volunteer army will be disproportionately minorities.

To these brave men who lust for war, I dedicate the poetry of Stephen Crane.

War is Kind
by Stephen Crane

Do not weep, maiden, for war is kind. Because your lover threw wild hands toward the sky And the affrightened steed ran on alone, Do not weep. War is kind.

Hoarse, booming drums of the regiment Little souls who thirst for fight, These men were born to drill and die The unexplained glory flies above them Great is the battle-god, great, and his kingdom-- A field where a thousand corpses lie.

Do not weep, babe, for war is kind. Because your father tumbled in the yellow trenches, Raged at his breast, gulped and died, Do not weep. War is kind.

Swift, blazing flag of the regiment Eagle with crest of red and gold, These men were born to drill and die Point for them the virtue of slaughter Make plain to them the excellence of killing And a field where a thousand corpses lie.

Mother whose heart hung humble as a button On the bright splendid shroud of your son, Do now weep. War is kind.

(Christian Dewar writes about politics, history and race relations for democrats.com, democraticunderground.com and Pulse of the Twin Cities. His work also appears at progressive sites such as buzzflash.com, bartcop.com, thehamster, smirkingchimp.com and others. He can be reached at christian_dewar@hotmail.com )