13 February, 2005

War is a fashion statement, don’t you know

Dear friends

If you ever thought that the illegal occupation of Iraq was OK, just explore http://riverbendblog.blogspot.com/ check the links and see what the 'free' life is really like in New Iraq. Surely the allies in the so-called 'Coalition of the Willing' will not be allowed by their citizens to follow this disaster with an invasion of Iran. Or will they?

Today's poem begs the question: how did we get to agree to being military aggressors?

War is a fashion statement, don’t you know

These days you can buy
Tart gear micro skirts
In cam khaki
And desert biscuit tones
SAS survival camping kit
Feather lite for family
Spearhead operations

I rescued a cam holster
From Kampala’s mud
To stash my Nokia phone
Rather that than have Africans
Mimic Mzungu wastefulness
And I wear it as an anti-statement

But have you noticed the dress code
Of Liberian rebels and the
New York street-gang names
They award themselves
Bandannas and mirror shades
Real tossers
And bloody dangerous at 12

Have you watched the hi pyrotechnic
Foxtel news action-packed images
Of carnage in Fallujah
Plenty of smoke and flame
Carefully avoiding
The shredded limbs of grandmothers

Have you tried doing microsurgery
On babies
Hard wired to your iPod
With Burn Mutherfucker rap
Breaking your eardrums
Feel it pulsating in your veins

Now you can download the song
To your cellphone
So it becomes
Your ringtone
And you can enjoy mass-slaughter
With every incoming call

Have you noticed how
Like a creepy new belief-system
The sacrament of the Unknown Soldier
Is taking over public religious observance
Yet the limbless and despairing
Silently disappear into their slums
Unthanked by the triumphals

An F111 flypast somehow
Enhances a River Festival
With special tricks from Blackhawk choppers
Militarising our government-sponsored entertainment

The references to war in our sports commentaries
Business-speak and marketing jargon
And personal development
Having a moral compass
Is just plain post-modern unfashionable

Till our resistance has wilted
Under a firestorm of empathy-free napalm
Are you ready to be frightened
By smirking politicians
Visiting a sanitised
Shopping mall
Near you

Willy Bach © November 2004

1. Lite now refers to soymilk, saccharine soft drinks, torture, and ‘success’ in the ‘war on terror’.
2. A Mzungu is a ghost, a person lost in Africa, in short a Caucasian.
3. Refers to the lyrics of ‘Full Nelson’ by US rap band Limp Bizkit favoured by American soldiers going into combat engagements in Iraq.
Lyrics: http://www.lyricsdownload.com/limp-bizkit-full-nelson-lyrics.html


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