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More Moms Have to Go to War

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In 2001, after the attack on the twin towers, the US went to war in Afghanistan. Since the folks that had attacked us were funded by Saudi Arabians, and the people of Afghanistan are some of the poorest and most insular on earth, that didn't make much sense. But we've spent almost 10 years moving the rubble around to the tune of a few hundred billion a year anyway.

Attacking Iraq in 2003 made even less sense since they had absolutely nothing to do with the 9/11 attack, had one of the most westernized/secular regimes in the region, and were fully contained by a very effective no-fly zone. We've been at war there for more than seven years . . . and all we've done is set up a puppet government that will fall unless US military forces and vast sums of military aide are continuously poured into Iraq to maintain it.

Here in the US . . . most of us have managed to do a pretty good job of ignoring both wars. And one can make the case that's kind of adaptive. If people of the US allowed ourselves to get violently angry every time our government did something completely stupid, our society would rip itself to bits. So we all work hard to ignore the crap it does.

But now it is time for us to start a war of our own and I think Mothers are going to have to be on the front lines.

Yes, I Mean You . . .

Most of us Mom's can barely manage to get the kids to school and feed them dinner every day. Most of us work. Most of us are responsible for doing the laundry, paying the bills, getting the dog to the vet and taking Grandma to the doctor.


Most of us have barely five minutes a day to call our own.

But I'm here to make the case that if you love your kids you had better decide to spend that five minutes every day working hard to end these two stupid wars.

Our lack of effective political action has cost us a great deal in the last decade and it is on the verge of costing is a great deal more in the months to come. Ignoring these wars and all the related government spending is like ignoring a lump in your breast or your husband's chest pains.

You'll live to regret your mistake very much.

I Know You Don't Have Much Time . . . So Here's the Low Down

The wars in Iraq and Afghanistan have cost the US about one trillion dollars ($1,000,000,000,000) in cold hard cash. Since the war was paid for by deficit spending, which is effectively like paying for it with high interest credit cards), and since those direct costs don't take into account the impact on VA and veterans benefits going forward, or the cost to states, National Guardsmen and their equipment, the price is actually two or three times higher.

Much of the money we have spent has gone to companies like Kellogg Brown Root, who poisons the water our soldiers drink and electrocutes them in their showers, and Blackwater, who (unconstrained by the Universal Code of Military Justice), commits atrocities that get our military men killed. These companies, and all the other military contractors our money has been "donated" to, have very active "political lobbies" that we've funded insanely well over the last decade.

Believe me, hundreds of millions of the dollars you and have have "invested" on fighting this war are being used to keep it going in perpetuity by the folks who make a profit from it.

Spending all this money on war has meant not spending it on education, jobs, or anything else you or your family benefit from.

In fact, this spending has siphoned money from every program that provides any direct benefit to you, including law enforcement, government regulation that's supposed to protect your food, water or financial investments. It has even gutted disaster relief programs, as we saw in New Orleans.

The Problem has Become Critical So You Have to Take Effective Action Now

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www.nobetterfriendmovie.com

Nancy Fulton is a writer and filmmaker. You can find her work at www.backfromiraqmovie.com and www.nobetterfriendmovie.com. She's the daughter of a military family with a firm commitment to protecting civil and human rights worldwide.

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Often we have more time and sometimes we appear to... by Bia Winter on Tuesday, Dec 29, 2009 at 1:07:53 PM