The right-wing songbook on this Pearl Harbor Day, is ringing out a thumping version of “The Battle Hymn of the Republic.” Taking a cue from reliable gasbag, J Pod, they are clamoring for utter defeat and humiliation of our enemies, weeping over our country’s divided views on the Iraq War, and wringing their hands for their fellow countrymen and women’s failure to express patriotism through blind acquiescence.
Glory! Glory! Halleluiah!
As tempting as it must be to draw comparisons between WWII and our current entanglement in Iraq, the cognitive leap is too great to withstand scrutiny. Like pathetic Harpies, the wings refuse to abandon the long ago discredited claims of a connection between Iraq and the events of 9/11 – screech, screech, screech – and in doing so, they show an utter lack of respect for every civilian and soldier who served or lost their life as a result of Pearl Harbor or the attacks of 2001.
Patriotism exercised with blinders honors no one, least of all the dead.
For my part, I prefer the alternative lyrics to the Battle Hymn composed by Mark Twain in 1901, in the wake of the Phillipine-American War.
Mine eyes have seen the orgy of the launching of the Sword;
He is searching out the hoardings where the stranger’s wealth is stored;
He hath loosed his fateful lightnings, and with woe and death has scored;
His lust is marching on.