Bush Values Human Life, Bombs Away
November 8, 2001
It's hard to read the paper these days without getting a case of cognitive dissonance.
On November 7, I read an article entitled, "U.S. uses world's largest regular bomb." It said that the Pentagon was using a 15,000-pound bomb called a "daisy cutter," a bucolic name for a nasty device that, according to the A.P. story, "incinerates everything within up to 600 yards."
Then I read Bush's speech he gave to European leaders on November 6. He said, "Our efforts are directed at terrorists and military targets because, unlike our enemies, we value human life. We do not target innocent people..."
But incinerating everything within a 600-yard distance does not show great reverence for human life.
How many innocent people will fall within the deadly parameters of the daisy cutters?
How many fall victim to the carpet bombs and the cluster bombs?
The Taliban say that 1,500 civilians have already been killed. The Pentagon says that's exaggerated.
But when the U.S. bombs a hospital, a nursing home, and village after village, as well as the capital city of Kabul-which has more than one million people in it-it's likely that the number of dead is fast approaching 1,000, if it hasn't reached there yet.
These civilians did not fly those planes into the World Trade Center; they did not deserve to die. And it is the smallest of comforts to their families that Bush did not "target" them.
As Howard Zinn says in the December issue of The Progressive, "Even if you grant that the intention is not to kill civilians, if they nevertheless become victims, again and again and again, can that be called an accident?"
The United States is causing hundreds of fatal accidents .
We need to get this reckless driver off the road of war.