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There Is No War, and You Would Not Have to Consider It if There Was.

 You see, dollars spent on whatever our armed forces have
undertaken in Afghanistan or anyplace else are not ordinary dollars.
Because this money is allotted for completely different purposes than
the usual government spending on agricultural development, commuter
trains, or consumer protection agencies, this cash flow does not arise
from taxation, nor does it involve fiscal activity in the standard sense
used to calculate, for example, GNP. Such peace or security funds,
including everything from weapons procurement to repatriation of remains
and future veterans' care facilities, in fact evaporate
retroactively the moment these dollars are spent and therefore generate
zero impact on the economy, let alone budgetary surpluses or deficits.
 You see, too, Afghans have a proud warrior culture. You'll recall
this fact from the news stories when our allies were arming, training
and supplying the tribal groups that now, sadly, have become the enemy
or at best are indifferent to the fate of the present tribal inhabitants
of the National Palace, who require an ever-increasing number of our
troops, and those of our coalition partners, to protect Kabul from other
tribal alignments among the resolute fighters who comprise--leaving
aside women and children-- that portion of the population not
unfortunately freezing or starving to
   death as they watch the convoys of ammunition pass through their
villages or along the roads, or not busy raising the one stable cash
crop all sides encourage and purchase: the poppies whose residue
eventually is detected in the veins of deceased inhabitants of certain
urban districts in our own country --thus demonstrating that while the
balance of casualties inflicted by our soldiers or theirs currently may
be tilted in our favor, the comparative statistics are not yet complete
regarding collateral non-combatant deaths. And speaking of fatalities,
remember that the tragedy of Canadians killed by firefights or
improvised land mines only occurs because the insurgents are doing their
job. Wait, that's wrong: our
 soldiers are the ones who, as they stress in media interviews, have a
job to do. Armed individuals on the opposing side, you see, by contrast
are devious and malicious, display no regard for human life and, despite
lacking any airborne logistical or tactical capabilities and bolstered
by foreign personnel who have no right to intervene in
Afghanistan's domestic affairs, are determined to impose by force a
set of alien values on an abject and defenseless people. 
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Author:Wayman, Tom
Publication:Antigonish Review
Article Type:Poem
Geographic Code:9AFGH
Date:Jun 22, 2009
Previous Article:Richard Meissenheimer (1947-2006).
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