A live recording of the Spokane Chapter of Veterans for Peace doing a reading of their collection of stories, essays and poems:
Veterans For Peace are not your ordinary Government Issue soldiers. Our militarism, often accepted with gusto in the beginning, has turned sour and dark at its finish. Along with our fallen comrades, we have also fallen, due to the devastation visited upon humankind, by endless war in our name, the chaotic destruction of our fellow human beings.
These writings, dedicated to our good peacemakers from WWI onward, contain memories of, and our response to, the experience of war; we offer essays, letters, stories, poems and prayers, to let you see, if you dare, into the minds of those who trained, fought, and lived the insistent social demand to physically confront other human beings. We now realize all that ferocious, vicious, reptilian behavior required of us (and infused into the young via competitive rather than cooperative “sports,”) was merely for purposes of a corporate colonialism, lining the already deep pockets of profiteers who lack the imagination of how to live peacefully with all peoples.
As 22 veterans, plus many active duty personnel, end their suffering by suicide each day, here in the year 2015, we hereby testify to the tragedy of our nation’s historical policies of preparedness for destruction, as our projected violence and cruelty comes home to haunt us all.
We write in contravention to yet another proposed ethereal war memorial, to be installed at the Spokane Veterans Arena, dedicated to the “fallen heroes of 911,” entitled “illuminating courage,” knowing full well these monuments serve only to perpetuate the reliance upon militarism which defers facing the real solution to our angers and fears – acceptance of empathy, love, compassion, understanding, and caring for all of our selves in this world of uncertainty and wonder.
Please accept our offerings, this second printing of a little book, as an honest remembrance of our time in war, dedicated to a World Without Wars, with the energy, vision, and light to see the way forward to Peace, sweet Peace!