Friday, March 24, 2006

Happy Anniversary, Iraq.

I have been reading quite a bit on news sites lately about the 3rd anniversary of the Iraq war. I assume many people are thinking the same thing I am, which is: "I didn't think it had been that long.... Where was I three years ago?"

I happen to know exactly where I was three years ago, because I was in Europe on my spring break when the U.S. invaded Iraq. That's me on the Arno River in Florence, probably a week before war broke out. I remember seeing Italy peppered with "Pace" flags, and also running into various protests of the impending war.

The day U.S. armies actually invaded Iraq, I was having breakfast in a hotel in Paris, and the snippets I could understand of the French news told me what had happened. I remember being concerned for the safety of myself and my classmates, since we had already been approached on numerous occasions with anti-American sentiment.

I also remember with distinct clarity the day in early May of that year, when the U.S. claimed that "the majority of the fighting in Iraq was over." We had been taking our finals that week, and we cheered and celebrated that the war had lasted a ridiculously short two months. What had everyone been worried about, anyway?

And now it's three years later, and thousands of American troops have died in Iraq, and I'm "safe" at home in America, still waiting
for the war to end. How could we have been so blind - in the beginning of every war, the populace is led to believe that it will only take months, or even weeks, to bring the fighting to an end. And we have fallen to the same false hopes that were held by the Europeans before WWI, and the Germans before WWII, and so on and so forth.

Happy Anniversary.

No comments: