The war in Iraq should we care about the other people that were affected besides AmericansIt's hard to talk about how the war has affect the American side of things, however do we dare to think...

The war in Iraq should we care about the other people that were affected besides Americans

It's hard to talk about how the war has affect the American side of things, however do we dare to think about ALL of the people who have lost their lives because of the war. And were not just talking suicide bombers. What about the innocent people who have done nothing wrong still were killed by the (americansoliders) who thought it okay to take their anger and frustrations out on the innocent people (from Iraq) who done nothing wrong and just were a victim of being from Iraq. Which was the only real crime.

 

Asked on by mrsgrimes1

12 Answers | Add Yours

missjenn's profile pic

missjenn | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Adjunct Educator

Posted on

This is a really good question, and I'm not too sure if it's directed towards a lesson idea or use in the classroom but I suggest reading Mark Twain's "The War Prayer" to help you come to a conclusion. Fair warning that it does take place in a church so if this is something that may offend someone be aware please. It is an excellent, illustrated, short story about a town going to war and subsequently how they realize their prayers for success mean death to innocent people and those people "over there" are more than likely doing exactly what they are doing.

Also, I think the first distinction should be made Iraq (or any country) is made up of individual people. The war is against a certain group of people, who identify themselves as "other" as is often the case. As one of my students pointed out during The Devils Advocate, not all Germans were Nazis. So in this sense, yes we should care about the other people.

pohnpei397's profile pic

pohnpei397 | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted on

In reply to posts 6 and 9, it does not seem that you do "completely understand" because your further comments suggest that there are just as many "bad" soldiers out there who are taking out their frustrations and anger on innocent civilians in Iraq.  If you look at the statistics of the number of incidents in Iraq that are related to rogue ("bad") soldiers in Iraq versus the schools that have been reestablished/built, the medical treatment that is becoming available to people who did not have access to it under Saddam's reign, and the other positives in the country, you'll see that there are far more soldiers over there doing their jobs with respect and honor, all with concern for the Iraqi and Kurdish people than there are those who are acting out of rage.

I agree that there are issues that war can never solve or even that the war in Iraq did not have to take place, but I strongly disagree with the broad assumption of the original question that the majority if not all of the British, American, and other NATO soldiers in Iraq are simply over there killing innocent Iraqis so that they can vent. We must all remember that the soldiers go because their governments send them, governments that for the most part are elected by us the people. The majority of Congress voted along with President Bush to send troops to Iraq; so if there is any question about who is concerned or not concerned about the Iraqi people, it shouldn't be foisted upon soldiers who are over there doing what they've been asked to do by their governments and people and who are for the most part completing their missions honorably.

Very good point, and just what I thought when I saw post #6.  I also took the liberty of editing your last paragraph because you said "agree" where you clearly meant "disagree."

In response to #9... this is a pretty confused post.

You say that we must look at things from both sides, but you also say that it is not fair for us to justify what we did and how we did it.  How do we look at both sides without attempting to justify one side of the argument?

You also say that part of being a good American is accepting everyone for who they are. So do we accept the Taliban for who they are as they execute apostates?  Do we accept Sudan's government for who they are as they commit atrocities in Darfur?  Do we accept China's leaders for who they are as they suppress free speech?

 

 

scarletpimpernel's profile pic

scarletpimpernel | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

Posted on

In reply to posts 6 and 9, it does not seem that you do "completely understand" because your further comments suggest that there are just as many "bad" soldiers out there who are taking out their frustrations and anger on innocent civilians in Iraq.  If you look at the statistics of the number of incidents in Iraq that are related to rogue ("bad") soldiers in Iraq versus the schools that have been reestablished/built, the medical treatment that is becoming available to people who did not have access to it under Saddam's reign, and the other positives in the country, you'll see that there are far more soldiers over there doing their jobs with respect and honor, all with concern for the Iraqi and Kurdish people than there are those who are acting out of rage.

I agree that there are issues that war can never solve or even that the war in Iraq did not have to take place, but I strongly disagree with the broad assumption of the original question that the majority if not all of the British, American, and other NATO soldiers in Iraq are simply over there killing innocent Iraqis so that they can vent. We must all remember that the soldiers go because their governments send them, governments that for the most part are elected by us the people. The majority of Congress voted along with President Bush to send troops to Iraq; so if there is any question about who is concerned or not concerned about the Iraqi people, it shouldn't be foisted upon soldiers who are over there doing what they've been asked to do by their governments and people and who are for the most part completing their missions honorably.

mshurn's profile pic

Susan Hurn | College Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

Posted on

In response to post #6, I must strongly disagree. I think there are far more good and decent American troops than bad ones. Wearing the American uniform is a source of pride and honor for the vast majority of our troops; they serve with courage and integrity, and many come home traumatized by the suffering they have seen among civilians as well as their own friends in uniform.

Any man or woman in uniform who would deliberately kill the innocent is not a soldier. That person would be a criminal, and the American military prosecutes and punishes a criminal who disgraces the uniform.

scarletpimpernel's profile pic

scarletpimpernel | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

Posted on

Your "question" is based on a faulty premise. You ask,

"What about the innocent people who have done nothing wrong still were killed by the americansoliders) who thought it okay to take their anger and frustrations out on the innocent people (from Iraq)."

That question/statement assumes that all innocent Iraqis who perished at the hands of American soldiers were killed simply because of the soldiers' anger and frustration--where is your support for such a broad generalization?  While there have been some cases of soldiers' abusing their power in Iraq, they have been few and far between, and I think that Americans have shown that they not only care about those lives lost but have punished those who killed out of "anger and frustration."

I can state truthfully that while my husband was deployed to Iraq, he and his fellow soldiers became such close friends with some of their Iraqi intepreters that they mourned their injuries and death as much as they did American casualties.

One last point, I currently teach a Kurdish student--she's from Saddam Hussein's favorite ethnic group to attack and murder.  She lives in freedom now in the United States because of Americans being in Iraq and liberating the Kurdish people.  She would one day like to return to Iraq to live in freedom and thinks that that might be possible now that Saddam is gone (again, because Americans were in Iraq). So, even if a person disagrees with the war or the reason for going there, it is illogical to assume that American soldiers are over there deliberately making life miserable or risky for the Iraqi people or that they and we do not consider or care about all that the Iraqis have suffered and lost.

drmonica's profile pic

drmonica | (Level 2) Associate Educator

Posted on

There will always be innocent victims of warfare. This is the dilemma faced by those in position to make the decision to go to war. The leaders must weigh the innocent lives lost and determine if that necessary evil would justify the end to be achieved.

The situation you describe, where American soldiers murder innocent civilians, is not an act of warfare, but a crime that merits prosecution under civilian law, in my opinion.

pohnpei397's profile pic

pohnpei397 | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted on

It is not clear that this question is actually asking for discussion.  It seems to me that simply a polemic against some sort of straw man.  Does caring about lost American lives really make us unable to care that others died?  Does the fact that we remain there necessarily imply that we don't care?

I personally think it was a mistake to invade Iraq.  But the fact that we did does not mean that we willed the death of all the innocent people that have died.  Neither does it mean that Iraqis would have been better off if we had stayed out.  It is worth remembering that there were a lot of people suffering and dying because of Saddam Hussein.  It is also worth noting that much of the suffering and dying that happens now is due to power struggles among the Iraqis themselves.

It is important, whether we oppose the war or not, to think clearly about what they war actually means and to be honest about the effects it has had on the whole world.  But that means we have to think rather than engaging in one-sided polemics.

 

lrwilliams's profile pic

lrwilliams | College Teacher | (Level 1) Educator

Posted on

I think that we have to care about the way the war in Iraq affects all people involved. We are suppose to be there to help "liberate" the people of Iraq, it would be hard to not have concern about all people if that is indeed part of our mission.

jenny2010's profile pic

jenny2010 | Student | (Level 2) eNoter

Posted on

in response to #10 i completly agree with you. we should not be blaming the soldiers in iraq or afganistan simply because the governments dicision was not somthing we agree with. i live in the uk and whilst im angry with the government for dragging us into this war i completly support the men fighting it. higher political issues should not get in the way of the support for these men. yes, there have been a few reports of bad things happening but it is a real minority. the majority are doing our countries proud. i have a long term boyfriend who is going to be deployed to afganistan in the summer and whilst i dont agree with the war, i am supporting him every step of the way, even though im secretly terrified for him, i am still proud.

mrsgrimes1's profile pic

mrsgrimes1 | (Level 1) eNoter

Posted on

It is easy for strong countries to wage war on weaker countries without caring for people of those countries. But history has shown that this kind of arrogant recklessness does not pay in the long run.

People fight war to secure peace for themselves, but unfortunately war only begets war, especially if it is fought to club other nation into submission without any concern for their rights and their welfare. A lasting peace can be achieved only by being just and fair. and this requires concern for others.

Your response means that you have read what was said and gave a great response to it. What I was trying to say that it's easy for the U.S. or us to just say it's our way or no way at all. We have to look at it from both sides of the fence. And in not doing so WE have brought our own country to its knees. And its not fair for us to try to justify what we did or how we went about doing it. We pride ourselves on how we are a democracy and accepting others but does that only mean for americans or are outsiders incuded as well. Part of being a good american is accepting every one for who they are.

krishna-agrawala's profile pic

krishna-agrawala | College Teacher | (Level 3) Valedictorian

Posted on

It is easy for strong countries to wage war on weaker countries without caring for people of those countries. But history has shown that this kind of arrogant recklessness does not pay in the long run.

People fight war to secure peace for themselves, but unfortunately war only begets war, especially if it is fought to club other nation into submission without any concern for their rights and their welfare. A lasting peace can be achieved only by being just and fair. and this requires concern for others.

mrsgrimes1's profile pic

mrsgrimes1 | (Level 1) eNoter

Posted on

Your "question" is based on a faulty premise. You ask,

"What about the innocent people who have done nothing wrong still were killed by the americansoliders) who thought it okay to take their anger and frustrations out on the innocent people (from Iraq)."

That question/statement assumes that all innocent Iraqis who perished at the hands of American soldiers were killed simply because of the soldiers' anger and frustration--where is your support for such a broad generalization?  While there have been some cases of soldiers' abusing their power in Iraq, they have been few and far between, and I think that Americans have shown that they not only care about those lives lost but have punished those who killed out of "anger and frustration."

I can state truthfully that while my husband was deployed to Iraq, he and his fellow soldiers became such close friends with some of their Iraqi intepreters that they mourned their injuries and death as much as they did American casualties.

One last point, I currently teach a Kurdish student--she's from Saddam Hussein's favorite ethnic group to attack and murder.  She lives in freedom now in the United States because of Americans being in Iraq and liberating the Kurdish people.  She would one day like to return to Iraq to live in freedom and thinks that that might be possible now that Saddam is gone (again, because Americans were in Iraq). So, even if a person disagrees with the war or the reason for going there, it is illogical to assume that American soldiers are over there deliberately making life miserable or risky for the Iraqi people or that they and we do not consider or care about all that the Iraqis have suffered and lost.

I completely understand how you feel about the comment that was made. Your husband and his friends may be some of the better people whom were there but we should always believe for every good persons there are bad ones as well.

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