Living Testimony From Sand Creek Massacre of Nov. 29th, 1864

by Daniel Russ on December 20, 2009

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{ 7 comments… read them below or add one }

Corsair8X December 20, 2009 at 3:53 pm

I think it’s quite a stretch for them to compare Sand Creek with Iraq today if their intention is a comparrison of US practices. What happened back then can probably best be described as genocide. I think it is completely false to describe civilian deaths in Iraq as anything approaching genocide. Any genocide occuring in Iraq in these recent years has been the result of one religious group attmpting to snuff out another – and I think that even the trigger for that can be blamed on actors who might not be from Iraq but who are definitely from the region.

Daniel Russ December 20, 2009 at 4:23 pm

Thank you again for your thoughtful comments. But we sit here sheltered from the facts on the ground what by I will call a perfect storm of a limp dick hollowed out shell of what once was a truth seeking national media, and a generally mis-informed/ill-informed American public.

According to Wikipedia, there are several organizations that have tried to put a number on the violent deaths that have occurred since the invasion in 2003. These deaths were caused by civil violence that occurred, in my estimation, by the war planners who wanted victory on the cheap and they got it. Chief of staff of the US Army Shinseki estimated that we would need upwards of 300,000 to 400,000 troops to invade, destroy the Iraqi army and then hold the country down, meaning, stabilize it. Well, as many have said, because Rumsfeld insisted on a smaller more nimble force, tens, perhaps hundreds of thousands have died. Here are the statistics

Iraq Family Health Survey 151,000 violent deaths. June 2006

Lancet survey 601,027 violent deaths out of 654,965 excess deaths. June 2006

Opinion Research Business survey 1,033,000 violent deaths as a result of the conflict. August 2007

Associated Press 110,600 violent deaths April 2009

Iraq Body Count 92,489 – 100,971 violent civilian deaths as a result of the conflict. June 2009

Whether you call this inadvertent, or genocide, I believe, depends on who you ask, and where they live. If you were an Iraqi who supported the invasion, and knew literally dozens of people who were killed in the aftermath, you might call it genocide. was this fault of Muslims fighting each other in a small scale civil war…or an invading army that did not do due diligence?

Corsair8X December 20, 2009 at 11:50 pm

Genocide implies intent however. This is why I have a problem with the comparison. To simply compare numbers with genocide and to disasociate that from intent deprives the word of its true horror. It does a diservice to the world and the many legitimate victims of genocide.

Let us not neuter this word by incorrectly applying it as a convenient code word implying something horrible. Such has happened to the word fascist. May we never see the full implications of that mistake and so too with genocide.

For it to be properly applied you would have to believe that the intent of your government is to *purposely* wipe out all or a significant portion of the population in question. You have to ask yourself if you actually believe this. You have to believe that this is the actual intent. The very word genocide demands this examination. And if you do truly believe this then you must do more than simply write about this. You live in a free society as opposed to a fascist state. How did history judge the citizens of Germany who did not live in such a free society? If you truly believe this intent then simply writing about as you are is simply not enough.

Genocide as a word carries such weight. It cannot be thrown around as lightly as you have. You too have a responsibility to the truth. I ask you to please think about that fact. With so many people writing publically today – it is more important now than it has ever been.

Daniel Russ December 21, 2009 at 12:59 am

Again I appreciate your thoughtful comments. I will leave you with this.

We sit here and pat ourselves on the back for a job well done while thousands of innocents have been killed. To the Indians Manifest Destiny was genocide. To the pioneers, it was God’s blessing upon them. Everything depends on your point of view.

We may not have meant to kill thousands or leave them in a maelstrom. But they died because of our actions nonetheless.

The road to Hell is paved with good intentions.

Corsair8X December 21, 2009 at 8:24 am

This is something we can agree on. You should not have been there in the first place. My country tried to tell you this and your leadership did not listen. Your press led the march into Iraq both figuritively and literally.

Sadly nobody listened to Eisenhower and trusted the military industrial complex PR that said it could be precise and practically bloodless. It was neither. Sanctions were working. I wish all the best to the Iraqi people. An Iraqi friend once said to me that he wishes that the region never had oil. “Maybe people would leave us to ourselves then.”

But please. Heed my words about genocide. It is critical that this word not be watered down by careless application. We all have a stake in this.

Daniel Russ December 21, 2009 at 9:07 am

agreed

merry christmas

where are you from?

Corsair8X December 21, 2009 at 12:45 pm

And to you as well.

I’m from Canada (just outside of Toronto)

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