Masthead graphic based on a painting by Gudrun Thriemer.

Monday, July 06, 2009

Roger Pulvers, "Double standards fly high when it comes to bombing of civilians," Japan Times, July 5, 2009.

Sad to say, every generation for the past century has known its own war — wars that have touched so many millions through the loss or traumatization of relatives, friends or fellow citizens.

"My war" was America's in Indo-China, centered on Vietnam. Abhorrence of what my country, the United States, was doing to the region caused me, and many in my generation, to choose the life of an expatriate.

But it wasn't until years later that I came to realize exactly how masterly criminal the prosecution of that war was. I didn't know that Laos, for instance, is the country on which more bombs were dropped per capita than on any other in history. Between 1964 and 1973, 90 million cluster bomblets were rained on Laos in approximately 500,000 missions. Up to a third of those didn't detonate; and, as a result, there are now about 25 million of them lying around in that country unexploded.

  If anything, civilians are brought together by terror bombing, their resolve reinforced.

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