The Lives of the Occupied
by Andrew Mason
by Andrew Mason: Military
Life Is Easy
The invaders set up camp on the outskirts
of our village a week ago. A few days later, their tanks began rolling
down our streets with their turrets traversing from left to right
and only stopping to point there cannons at anyone crossing the
roads. A few of the villagers responded with anger. They grabbed
their rifles and rocket launchers ready to use force to repel this
act of aggression. The troops came to recruit police officers and
soldiers to help provide "security" for the new government.
Checkpoints were set up at every other street corner. What did we
do to deserve this? All we want is peace and to be left alone not
guns pointed in our faces with soldiers at every street corner questioning
our every move. While driving to the market, to pick up some food,
I was stopped at a checkpoint. There stood three soldiers and a
giant armored vehicle three times the height, and twice the length
of my car. While staring into my vehicle one of their translators
shouted a series of questions, "Where are you going? What is
this in your trunk? Do you have any weapons? You say you have nothing
to hide?" They clearly thought I might have been hiding something
from them. A soldier pulled me out of my car and searched my body.
He started combing through my hair with his fingers. Completely
frightened, I asked what they were looking for. He barked something
at me in his strange dialect and kicked my legs apart. He patted
me down and across my torn and threw his knife-shaped hand into
my crotch. The other soldiers whipped out their knives and ripped
apart my carís interior only leaving the seatís metal frames. They
motioned me to leave so I limped back to the car and drove off.
This event happened at least multiple times a week, sometimes daily.
Of course, it was a little easier for them the following times since
they had already wreaked havoc on the inside of my car. I only pray
that they donít harm me or my family.
The first villagers who took up arms
against the invaders fired mortar rounds into the invadersí encampment.
Some of soldiers at the checkpoint next to the market spotted the
flashes evacuating the mortar tubes. The occupiers sent armored
vehicles down to the house and ripped through its walls with machine
gun fire. The men inside the house were killed.
The next day the multiple convoys
of troops swept through our village. They were looking for mortar
tubes, rockets, and other explosives. A group of soldiers kicked
down my door and ran into the living room pointing their guns at
my family and me. I was pulled out by my hair into the street. A
translator asked if I had any explosives or weapons in the home.
I didnít. They proceeded to rip apart my home by flipping over the
couches and throwing about all of my familyís personal effects.
The translator informed me they found nothing but I had to be taken
back to their encampment for questioning. My hands were forcefully
zip-tied together behind my back and a black cloth was thrown over
my face. I was then thrown in the back of truck with other people
from my village. Some of the men were crying and begging for godís
help. Some were pissing all over themselves. Others pledged revenge.
We arrived at the military base and
were lined up next to each other. We were individually taken into
a room for questioning. Many of the men were detained there for
days while the rest of us were allowed to go back to our homes.
I later discovered that almost every male for age 15-45 were taken
from the village that day. Once again, others plotted to use force
against the invaders.
I woke up the next morning to the
sounds of rockets being fired over our village. I rushed outside
and saw that they were exploding somewhere inside the military encampment.
Then my sight went black. I woke up in the middle of the street.
The four houses around me were demolished. I looked towards my home
which had also in ruin. My wife and children were under the rubble.
Grabbing each piece of rubble and throwing it wildly into the street;
I searched for my family. I asked a couple of others running frantically
looking for their loved ones what happened. They said the army responded
to the rocket attack by sending a barrage of mortars into the village.
I found my wife and children dead.
They were crushed under the rubble of our home. A patrol of soldiers
came and tried to compensate my losses with money. I refused to
take it. No amount of money could possibly bring back my family
or my home. There were others in the village that lost family and
friends to the bomb-driven slaughter. We have all lost the will
to live. Weíre getting guns and promising retribution.
This could have been a story written
by an Afghani, or an Iraqi but it was written by me. I was part
of that occupying force in Iraq. I put myself in the shoes of a
person on the other side of our guns. Some of the events in this
story I personally witnessed, and others are the stories of what
other veterans have seen. I hope and pray one day that all Americans
are capable of exercising empathy and are able come to the logical
conclusion that violence only produces more violence.
is real and it is perpetual in the lives of the millions across
the globe. However, there is one presidential candidate who has
vowed to end it. Vote Ron Paul to help end this vicious cycle.
[send him mail] is a
former corporal in the U.S.M.C.
© 2012 by LewRockwell.com. Permission to reprint in whole or in
part is gladly granted, provided full credit is given.