Thanks to fizzbang, I discovered and read this. It's a blog piece on discovering the blase attitude that we've adopted towards the killing of innocent citizens in Iraq -- so blase, that it can be set as background for CNN on-camera journalism.
Ok, so I feel the need to stop and break the monotony of the denial we've settled into, collectively. To date, estimates of the civilian casualties in Iraq are over 12,000. That's a fuckload of people, folks, and 74 were killed just yesterday.
Bring focus to this for a moment. Iraq originally had a population roughly that of what, New Jersey? But imagine that instead of Iraq, it's your state (whichever state you live in, scale accordingly) that's under attack. Imagine the daily fear you might have wondering if you'll be looted, raped, or killed while the occupiers wage a constant war with "insurgents" (and vice versa). If you remember having lived in relative peace and affluence (remember, Iraq did have the internet, cell phones, and most other technologies the western world had to offer before the war), all sacrificed for a battle zone you did not request.... where would your sympathies lie? Or would you even care in the daily battle for survival?
Realize that this is what these people are dealing with. Take a moment and remember that. Remember that in our theoretically democratic country, we are all responsible for the actions of our government. Remember that we, as a collective whole, are killing innocent people in their homes right now. I know it's a hard thing to think about, and it's draining after so long... but we need to remember this so that it sticks with us for future decisions. (I don't mean future as in November.)
And given that GWB has just requested that $3B be reappropriated from reconstruction to security, it looks like we have a lot of time for remembering, too.
(NOTE: For those who aren't US Citizens, I apologize for the US-centered view I wrote this in. I considered making it more general, but then it wouldn't be as effective for my target audience.)