war - quotes and descriptions to inspire creative writing
"Lucy, if you want sheep in a pen you need barking dogs outside. In our world, war and terrorism are the barking dogs, the pen is capitalism. And no, don't speak of communism, there is no communism as Marx envisaged, only totalitarianism and oligarchy. So, the question I ask is, who benefits from all this?"
"The roots of war are in how we communicate, from there the path is set. We fail to comprehend that language is just a crude tool to communicate a concept. Often the reply to any question is not a reply but the ruminations of the brain of the other, dealing with what was said. Most of the time our dialogues are simply different ways to express the same ideas. If we communicate like two closed fists, we are doomed to repeat history. If we open our hearts and minds our ideas can come together to create peace and harmony, like open hands coming together to overlap, the fingers weaving together. Perhaps we can't agree on climate change, but we can agree on the need to protect the ecosystems we all depend on, and doesn't that give the desired result for all? Perhaps we can't agree on abortion, but we could work together to make a society where every child has enough food and good shelter - making abortion an illogical choice unless the life of the mother is at stake. If we think that debate equals argument and success is standing your ground, we'll never turn this ship around before we hit the iceberg, and then what? Will we fight over the arrangement of the chairs as we sink beneath the icy brine?"
It was well known from the monsters of history that people didn't react to death tolls if they were too high to comprehend. One death can mobilize a community, even a nation. Many deaths, hundreds or thousands, can make a lasting impression to be used for good or bad intentions. Millions of deaths were the ticket, make it bloody enough and people will keep on eating their cornflakes and pouring their coffee. We just aren't wired to cope with that kind of devastation and so we don't, like a safety shutdown. So the path for the warlords was simple, make sure the death tolls are as high as possible. For those freaks that are able to react - shut them down with fear of the "enemy." Wicked fun. Worked every time. The only antidote was to shine a light on one dead child at a time, just one. Let the world see each God's child killed in the name of war, in the name of money and greed.
When the war came it was Goliath against David, only this time Goliath had all the toys. It was no old fashioned battle with the young men of the enemy coming to fight the fathers of our homeland, the ones who would die for their families. The smart bombs were only as smart as the person guiding them and no amount of collateral damage was too much. If generations were wiped out as they took their "surgical strike" then so be it, even of their target wasn't even home at the time.
As warfare becomes more modern those who chose to kill remain isolated from the horror, and the trigger pullers are heavily trained to follow orders; yes sir, yes marm. Only the lowest ranks see the blood, the dead children and their parents, bodies lined up like fallen dominos. They have the ruined lives and the PTSD. The higher ranks live out their fantasies of power like some hollywood blockbuster "shock and awe." But I can tell you that here on the ground we live out your worst nightmares daily.
The engineering of the war is something I'd like to take credit for, it wasn't easy. In this day and age it would be so easy for the populations to communicate directly, understand each other's points of view and heaven forbid, become "friends." They had to hate one another, human nature helped of course. They all wanted to be "right" and "superior." Religion was such a wonderful vehicle for all that, a way of using the best parts of their natures to boost the worst parts instead of suppressing them. I'm telling you it was genius. I guess that makes me a genius. What? Am I ashamed? Not at all. We're still on top aren't we? Life is cruel. Get over it.
War was always problematic. People just didn't want to fight. In their hearts they're all namby-pamby traders who want to take junior out to the ball park on the weekend. Even with the finest psychologists it was near impossible, those "Your country needs you" posters just wouldn't cut it anymore. We employed ivy league graduates to tell us what it would take to raise the population against our "enemy." We didn't like the answer. But what was the alternative? We needed war for our economy, to maintain our global position, but you can't rally a population around that flag. They needed to be "educated" on why the enemy is bad and fear that they or their families will personally suffer if action isn't taken. It takes years of course, but so long as the lie is big enough no-one suspects a thing - apart from the crazies. But then they also believe in UFO's and dress up for Star Trek conventions, so in a way, the louder they shout the better. It just solidifies the "normal" opinions.
The war ended when people refused to fight. The religious leaders and academics stood as one and said to turned off our media streams. They asked if every weekend we cold spend at least ten minutes meeting someone new from somewhere else on the globe - mostly on Skype - just meet them, exchange recipes and learn their children's names before we choose to drop another bomb. How can you kill people you know? Most of us aren't psychopaths. It took time of course, nothing is instant, some of it happened over YouTube. But the most powerful connections were live conversations between families. After the pleasantries we talked of the details of our every day lives, how we work to put food on our tables and survive. It was crazy, you know, but they were right. I can't kill my friend.
War came over the horizon like a slow moving tank. We became anxious, scared. Violence once confined to the television was playing out on our streets. The drama of hollywood was written in blood on the sidewalk. We choked on the liberal progress we had made to be multi-cultural, to accept different faiths and cultures like it was acrid air. No longer could we see muslims as human, only enemies, threats. Then we did what every generation has done since the dawn of time, when push came to shove we were easy to manipulate into war. Propaganda is so easy to see from the lens of the future, we think it's blatant and those folks long ago were wicked and stupid. But it turns out we haven't evolved at all. Our culture put up some resistance for a time, perhaps if we had caved to the will of the government sooner they might have stopped some of the carnage on our own soil. But we had to “learn.” So in came the brown-skinned men to slaughter our children until we bayed for the bombs...
We had enough food for the most part, housing and healthcare. We had resources and good infrastructure. So why did our young go to war? Why did their parents demand that an army be sent? They say that back then the bombardment of bad news was delivered many times a day in “news stories.” The “enemy” had to threaten our own homes, well-being and culture. They were repeatedly dehumanized and debased in our eyes, shown to be barbarous and cruel. We lost respect for them, and deep down felt glad when they died; glad because the threat to the ones we held dear had been lessened. Who benefited from this war? Not us tax-payers and not the “enemy.” We lost good people, so did they; but they lost far more. They were like David with the sling-shot and we took them back to the stone-age. I've heard people say that with pride, but I've done my own research and I know how many of their civilians died, children included.
With each bullet fired I felt nothing; my brain just shut down. I prayed the kids were alright with their mother, my love. Had I stopped for a moment to consider the awfulness of war I can't say I would have made it home at all. Every death was a man I could have loved as a brother in another time or place. The bombs we dropped killed folks I would have laid down my life for had I been given the chance to know them. But that is war. You fight and win or you die. On wintry nights when my wife sleeps, I creep out to the porch and let the bitter wind bite at my skin. It's real. It keeps me grounded when I think the memories will drown me from the inside. On bad nights I hear the screaming, see the blood, smell the gun powder. One time I saw a toddler at the end of my bed dressed in an enemy uniform. We aren't meant to kill each other, we're supposed to protect, to love. What kind of sociopaths get us into wars anyway? Kids aren't collateral damage, each one is as precious as the ones I lo
In war they say “To the victor go the spoils,” but that phrase has been out of date for so long. In war to the ammunitions and bomb makers go part of the spoils, the rest is handed out in contracts to rebuild what was blown up. Yet more is made from the harvesting of resources. It is a simple business model: the country is selected, fanaticism is sown, encouraged and trained with money that comes convoluted roots from our own elite. Then the young go of their own free will to commit the terrorism that will end their own lives, their state, their culture. They die to protest the wrongs committed to them, but ultimately only play into the enemy's hands. If I could go back in time I'd tell them that the only way to win is to show your humanity, your goodness, your love to the world. I would say the enemy dehumanizes you in order to rally their armies of ordinary citizens. I would say don't talk to the generals or the governments, but ordinary citizens with no vested interest in war.
Gordon raised his silver brows. "You are so naive. In a world with such weapons as we have there can be 'no all-out-wars.' It would be suicide for us all. Instead we win by undermining the economics of the other countries - war by another name. Once undermined, the citizens are stressed and easy prey to fundamentalism. They are "on the ropes" with their national mental health: drinking, taking drugs, or starving. Soon they are at war with one another, citizen X will kill citizen Y over a small difference of religion or perhaps a loaf of bread. Who will be our competitors then? No-one! They'll be lining up at the boarders just to be our road sweepers. So don't look at me like that you idiot, war always causes death, only this time we just supply the weapons, every shade of dogma and hold back on the things they need for basic living. Now get out; I have a war to win."
I turned to face the terrible foes with my hand clutching my gelid sword tightly.Anger kindled in my eyes. Everytime I looked at my sword I remembered all the remorse, all my friends slain in battle. And that fuelled me I fought like the devil devoid of sympathy,crushing my foes and slaughtering them. It was a terrible sight but I wanted revenge. I was thirsty for more blood. When the red sun rose mightily above the battle field only bloodshed and cries of pain could be seen and heard. I walked away mercilessly letting them all rot for it was their time to pay for my friends' lives!
The war was fought by turning the strengths of opposing societies into the tools of their destruction. For the west their greatest strength was their liberalism, their will for all to feel welcome and included in society. All it needed was a shove into politically correct anarchy with the needs of the many being subverted to the needs of a few. For the middle east their greatest strength was their devotion to God and their enemies found it all to simple to set religious factions against one another. Why kill your enemy when it is far simpler to have them kill one another? For the poor countries it was simple to corrupt their leadership with money and power, selling the populous into slavery. But finest strategy of them all was global finance, everyone wanted money and its supply was controlled by the real masters, the ones who thought nothing a few million deaths here and there...
How could I become so indifferent to brutality, ferocity and savagery? Perhaps I strayed a little too far from the shores of reason.
A three-letter word that can obliterate everything.
Wars tear people apart, they turn them into monsters. Wars put barricades between brothers they drive people insane. They make people look over their shoulder in even the safest places. What most don’t realize though is that wars are fought every day in every place imaginable. They strike hard and they strike fast in the places people feel most secure. They shred strength and expose vulnerability. They tear victims apart; from the inside out.
The thing I remember most about those last couple of days before the German occupation is how peaceful they were. How the spring sun shone brightly upon the habitants of Budapest, who carelessly strolled along the Danube and celebrated the many festivals March had to offer.
Life seemed simple – and it probably was – but it was the kind of simplicity one can only find in times before great complexity.
It was the calm before the storm. And the storm coming was going to be on a scale I’d never forget.