Friday, July 6, 2007

A War Without Legs

While living in LA and pitching series ideas for television, the question most frequently posed was, “Does it have legs”? Network executives were aware that it was critical the characters and stories be able to sustain in the fifth season of the show. This is a question that should have been considered before our president rushed to send troops to Iraq. Too many of them now have no legs.

It’s not only American soldiers who’ve become amputees. Since the beginning of 2007, 13,000 Iraqi citizens have survived attacks by bombs, mortars and rockets. 1/4 of all injuries over there involve the loss of limbs. Though the atrocities are withheld from us, this morning shortly after announcing that Bush is celebrating his 61st birthday, CNN showed a clip of an 18-year-old Iraqi girl, younger than the Bush twins, who lost both legs as the result of an explosive attack.

Not only did this young Iraqi innocent lose her legs, but she lost her sister and sister-in-law, who'd been killed in the attack. She's having to wait over a month to get fitted for prosthetic limbs. They're able to fabricate only 1200 prothetics a year, half of what’s needed. The girl was sadly telling the reporter that she can’t go out. And these are just the immediate horrors. Unmarried Iraqi women who’ve lost limbs don't marry, so she’s lost her future, the chance to find love and have children.

The war had been billed as “Shock and Awe”, sounding like a Hollywood box-office hit. The title was changed to “Operation Iraqi Freedom”, with no subtitle to remind us that since its start, somewhere between 66,000 and 73,000 Iraqi civilians have been killed. Tragically, this is, in every way, a war without legs.

We’re advised not to go to bed angry at our husbands, which I find easy. What’s harder is not to go to bed angry at Laura’s husband. Happy birthday, George.