Tuesday, August 23, 2005

Die and be a slogan

This is apalling.

We all know that the term, 'operation Iraqi Freedom' was a cute, catchy little slogan thought up to put a smiley face on this war. In fact, with the apparent outcome of that war the creation of an Islamic Republic where women will have less rights under the law than they had even under Saddam Hussein, the name is a farce.

But to stoop so low as to advertise it by putting the slogan on tombstones of the dead -- with or without approval from their families-- is despicable.

The vast majority of military gravestones from other eras are inscribed with just the basic, required information: name, rank, military branch, date of death and, if applicable, the war and foreign country in which the person served.

Families are supposed to have final approval over what goes on the tombstones. That hasn't always happened.

Nadia and Robert McCaffrey, whose son Patrick was killed in Iraq in June 2004, said "Operation Iraqi Freedom" ended up on his government-supplied headstone in Oceanside, Calif., without family approval.

"I was a little taken aback," Robert McCaffrey said, describing his reaction when he first saw the operation name on Patrick's tombstone. "They certainly didn't ask my wife; they didn't ask me." He said Patrick's widow told him she had not been asked either.

"In one way, I feel it's taking advantage to a small degree," McCaffrey said. "Patrick did not want to be there, that is a definite fact."

There is nothing they won't stoop to to promote their war.

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