Those of you who've been in my house might have noticed the map of Hiroshima over my bed...it's actually quite a rare map, the first bomb-damage evaluation done by the Army Corps of Engineers in 1945. Seems like a morbid thing to have over one's bed, but I've been interested in Hiroshima and Nagasaki since 1984, the year I saw "Hiroshima Mon Amour" and "The Atomic Cafe". Whether or not we ever hang the albatross of 11 September around Osama bin Laden's neck, those two cities are part of our legacy, along with Tokyo, Berlin, Dresden, Hamburg. Not that I'm ridden with guilt; my great-uncle's ship, the Saint Louis, was at Pearl Harbor. A Pole who points a finger at the Germans for Warsaw forgot the Polish destruction of Kiev...and so on. When we forget the sins we've committed against each other, that's when our righteousness gives us permission to commit more sins.
This is the poem that was recently published in Children, Churches and Daddies; I wrote it the day of our "Stop the Bomb" party on the 50th anniversary of the Hiroshima bombing. Yeah, that was nine years ago:
What are you to me?
Wasteland, American child, setting of a thousand Sunday movies,
Post-nuclear orphan. Hold you in my arms,
your skin peeling from your bones.
My country is not apologetic. Your country is not apologetic.
There is a map of Hiroshima over my bed. Every day it reminds me:
Countries mean nothing. People mean nothing.
But the name of a city will go into history forever.
Athens. Alexandria. Rome. Pompeii. Calcutta. Chicago. San Francisco. Tokyo. Dresden. Hiroshima. Nagasaki. Managua. Mexico City. Los Angeles. Rise from the ashes, bitter and filled with love. 6 August 1995
Maybe it's best not to take our citizenship (in the Greek sense) so seriously:
Ex-Porn Star to Run for Mayor of Milan
But as I said earlier, let's never forget that we are CITIZENS; not Americans, Canadians, Europeans, Africans, Commies, Terrorists, but citizens, Los Angelenos, Tapatios, Chilangos, Sevillanos, Londoners, Parisiens, Muscovites, Baghdadi, Jo'bergers, etc. That's where our loyaltys should lay, and then, friends, there really will be no more war:
Averting a Hundred Hiroshimas By J. Sri Raman t r u t h o u t Perspective
For example, our friends in New York City were once again under threat:
Officials: Financial Targets Face No Immediate Threat
By Kevin Johnson and Mimi Hall USA TODAY
Or were they?Pre-9/11 Acts Led To Alerts By Dan Eggen and Dana Priest Washington Post Officials not sure Al Qaeda continued to spy on buildings.
Old Data, New Credibility Issues By Glenn Kessler Washington Post
Fabricating Terror By William Rivers Pitt t r u t h o u t Perspective
I don't mean to sound cynical, but I think George Bush would rather nuke New York himself (Goddamn liberals) than see any more of this:
Shocking Prisoner Abuses Are Revealed By Andrew Buncombe and Nigel Morris Independent UK Prisoners at Guantánamo Bay were subjected to Abu Ghraib-style torture and sexual humiliation in which they were stripped naked, forced to sodomise one another and taunted by naked female American soldiers, according to a new report.
I mean, how awful is it when "Doctors Without Borders" is pulling out of Afghanistan and the US Army is using its own doctors to violate the Geneva Convention? Anybody remember "The Guns of Navarone"?
Doctors and Torture By Robert Jay Lifton, M.D. The New England Journal of Medicine http://www.truthout.org/docs_04/080604J.shtml
When Hiroshima and Nagasaki were bombed, at least no one could say it was an oversight or a mistake on President Truman's part; he meant to teach the Japanese a lesson they and the world would never forget. But with Bush, one wonders; the dope could accidentally irradiate half the Middle East and gulp "oops". I've been asked to pass along this tidbit, which many of you will already have heard about:Bush bitten by own soundbite
He actually made another more interesting gaffe yesterday; when asked by a Native American journalist about "Indian Sovereignty in the 21st Century", he hemmed and hawed (obviously not knowing jack-shit about Indian sovereignty) and said, "the Indians have always been sovereign regarding the Federal government." Really? The Indians are probably pretty happy about this reversal of almost 200 years of policy regarding their status. If, for example, the Navajo Nation now starts asking for passports, you only have GWB to blame.
Here's how to get that nudnik to do whatever you want (thanks, Geri):
Everyone's botching it this weekend; I know a few women that I'd hoped to see modeling these, but no:
Victoria's Secret apologizes for Buddha bikini: Sri Lanka
That, and even George, are tame compared to this unapologetic Nazi asshole:
Republican Candidate Admits Supporting Eugenics By Amber McDowell Independent UK
These idiots could take a lesson from the Austrians:
Spa in southwestern Austria offers tasty new treatment - chocolate baths
Don't take your job too seriously, citizens:
British police sniffer dog dies of suspected drug overdose after raid
Speaking of taking yourself too seriously, I've also enclosed two photos of a Swiss toilet...you've got to the love the Swiss, and you've got to love Dr. Bays, who thought the photos were worth forwarding. It's so much fun being alive, I hope nobody drops an A-bomb on us.
And finally, I don't know why, but I found this article more sad than anything. You can't smile for a passport picture, because if you did their computerized facial scans might not be able to ID you...it's Big Brother with a sourpuss:
No smiles please, we're British
Vive le Screed!
07 August 2004