Above photo: Gerry Condon. Workers World.
Who Lies? Who Dies? Who Pays? Who Profits?
Gerry Condon’s Speech at San Francisco Rally, October 4, 2023.
While reading the latest news of the war in Ukraine today, I was reminded of a song by Emma’s Revolution. The name of the song is Who Lies? It asks four fundamental questions that can be applied to just about any war:
“Who Lies? Who Dies? Who Pays? Who Profits?
Veterans For Peace certainly knows who lies. Our members have been lied into multiple wars, from Korea and Vietnam to Iraq, Afghanistan and beyond. Who lied? The President lied. Our political leaders lied. The newspapers and television lied. Even religious, academic and municipal leaders encouraged us to fight and die in a war based on lies.
And we most definitely know who died. 58,000 US soldiers – mostly poor and working class — died for lies in Vietnam, while we killed over 3 million Vietnamese men, women and children – mostly poor peasants. Thousands of US soldiers were killed and wounded in Iraq and Afghanistan, while hundreds of thousands of Iraqis and Afghanis died.
Our soldiers continue to die. PTSD and Moral Injury have led to more soldiers taking their own lives than those who died on the battlefield.
Who Pays? We all pay –our precious tax dollars, which are intended to provide essential public services like healthcare and housing – are stolen from us to pay for war.
Just one-third of what we are wasting on death in Ukraine could end homelessness in the US,or even end world hunger. But that is not where our money is going.
And now the final question, Who Profits? The weapons manufacturers like Boeing and Raytheon reap obscene profits. As do banks and huge financial institutions like Blackrock and Vanguard, which are heavily invested in the military, in high tech, and in media.
BlackRock and Vanguard are the two largest shareholders in the six major media companies that control more than 90% of the U.S. media. So while they reap huge profits for the 1% off of war-related industries, they are simultaneously shaping the media narrative that supports war.
In Ukraine right now, we have a stalemated war of attrition, where as Caitlin Johnstone writes, “soldiers are being killed and maimed in a battle for inches. At least tens of thousands have died in this war with hundreds of thousands wounded, all for those teeny, tiny little blips on the map. Ukraine is now freckled with more landmines than anywhere else on earth, which experts say will take decades to clear. This giant deathtrap is exacerbated by the cluster munitions that are covering the land with greater and greater frequency, which will go on to detonate and kill civilians (mostly children) for years to come. The mines and artillery fire on the frontline of this war are reportedly creating tens of thousands of amputees, numbers comparable to what was seen in World War I.”
And now Depleted Uranium weapons,known to cause cancers, birth defects, and genetic damage, are being added to the lethal mix.
It is no surprise then that military-aged Ukrainian men have been fleeing and attempting to flee the nation in droves to avoid conscription.
Veterans For Peace supports those draft resisters. We support the right to Conscientiously Object to participation in killing and war. We support war resisters and the right of peace activists to speak out against war without persecution, in both Ukraine and Russia.
We call on our own U.S. soldiers to thoughtfully consider whether they will obey orders to fight in illegal, immoral wars, or participate in training and arming this US proxy war against Russia.
Veterans For Peace joins with peace-loving people throughout the US and around the globe who are calling for URGENT Negotiations to End the War in Ukraine, Not More Weapons to Prolong and Escalate It. See official Veterans For Peace statement, here.
Even a civilization-ending nuclear war is all too possible if the war in Ukraine is not ended soon, along with insane Neocon push for war against China.
So please keep in mind the four questions posed by Emma’s Revolution – Who Lies? Who Dies? Who Pays? Who Profits?
War is NOT the Answer! Keep on Waging Peace!