Posts Tagged ‘David Krieger’

War Is Too Easy

November 9, 2010

If politicians had to fight the wars
they would find another way.

Peace is not easy, they say.
But it is war that is too easy –

too easy to turn a profit, too easy
to believe there is no choice,

too easy to sacrifice
someone else’s children.

Someday it will not be this way.
someday we will teach our children

that they must not kill,
that they must have the courage

to live peace, to stand firmly
for justice, to say no to war.

Until we teach our children peace,
each generation will have its wars.

Will find its own ways
to believe in them.

— David Krieger

Yes, war is too easy. It could be any war, but what comes to my mind is the illegal war on Iraq pressed by war criminals Bush and Blair riding to war on a pack of lies and jingoism.

Who has benefited from the illegal war on Iraq? Well not the Iraqi people, and even less the Christian minority. But the global corporations who rode the coattails of the war machine as it ravaged Iraq have done very well out of raping and pillaging Iraq.

David Krieger is a founder of the Nuclear Age Peace Foundation, and has served as president of the Foundation since 1982. Under his leadership the Foundation has initiated many innovative and important projects for building peace, strengthening international law and abolishing nuclear weapons. Dr. Krieger has lectured throughout the United States, Europe, and Asia on issues of peace, security, international law, and the abolition of nuclear weapons. He is the author and editor of many books on peace, including a recent book of peace poetry, Today Is Not a Good Day for War.

I first came across David Krieger when I found his beautiful poem The children of Iraq have names, reproduced by Canon Andrew White in his moving book Suffer the Children.

Canon Andrew White is vicar of St George’s Church in Baghdad and president of FRRME.
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Guernica

November 8, 2010
Guernica - Pablo Picasso

Guernica - Pablo Picasso

Picasso’s passion for peace
Symbol of war’s horrors
Screams of death and agony
Fallen man, fallen horse

Nazi Luftwaffe bombs falling
On small Basque village
It was market day, market day
The streets were jammed

Nazis bombed and strafed
Planes diving, machine guns firing
The young Luftwaffe pilots
Found the marketplace

Screaming villagers and peasants
Running for their lives
As death blurted from the sky that day
Seventeen hundred murdered and maimed

Picasso shared his human outrage
In his unforgettable Guernica
The Guernica of screams and death
Of fallen man, fallen horse

Cowardly diplomats and generals
Try to hide Guernica but they cannot;
Cover Guernica and it emerges
Starker, stronger, truer

Guernica was painted for you
Watch the ones who avert their eyes
As they slink by in shame
Planning new wars, new sorrow

— David Krieger

Guernica is a painting by Pablo Picasso, in response to the bombing of Guernica, Basque Country, by German and Italian warplanes at the behest of the Spanish Nationalist forces, on 26 April 1937, during the Spanish Civil War.

David Krieger is editor of Today Is Not a Good Day for War, a book of poetry.

The children of Iraq have names

November 8, 2010

The children of Iraq have names.
They are not the nameless ones.

The children of Iraq have faces.
They are not the faceless ones.

The children of Iraq do not wear Saddam´s face.
They each have their own face.

The children of Iraq have names.
They are not all called Saddam Hussein.

The children of Iraq have hearts.
They are not the heartless ones.

The children of Iraq have dreams.
They are not the dreamless ones.

The children of Iraq have hearts that pound.
They are not meant to be statistics of war.

The children of Iraq have smiles.
They are not the sullen ones.

The children of Iraq have twinkling eyes.
They are quick and lively with their laughter.

The children of Iraq have hopes.
They are not the hopeless ones.

The children of Iraq have fears.
They are not the fearless ones.

The children of Iraq have names.
Their names are not collateral damage.

What do you call the children of Iraq?
Call them Omar, Mohamed, Fahad.

Call them Marwa and Tiba.
Call them by their names.

But never call them statistics of war.
Never call them collateral damage.

— David Krieger

This beautiful poem by David Krieger is reproduced by Canon Andrew White in his book Suffer the Children (2010).

David Krieger is editor of Today Is Not a Good Day for War, a book of poetry.

Canon Andrew White, who I recently had the honour and privilege of meeting, is the Vicar of St George’s Church in Baghdad.


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