By Brian Small at Aug 12, 2008
I had a chance to attend the speech of an ivaw.org member.
He needed a break from the rather busy and authoritarion schedule for an Article Nine organization here in Japan. Ash Woolson blogged about his 'kidnapping'. It was just my way of supporting the troops, the survivors - working on surviving anyway. It was some Low-key R&R. IT was a small rather aged event, the new interpreter was challenged but it was positive. They sold a lot of booklets from the events organizer. I learned that the State Guard hadn't been sent abroad since WW2 and that their hourly wage over there comes out to 3 dollars an houre. That sounds a bit less than the Triple Canopy Peruvians' 75 dollars a day. (A cursor link sent me to a Dutch journalists' article about his Green Zone trip) I'm hoping he was calculating each day as 24 hours and not eight but I forgot to ask.
I was struck by how involved the operation of paying reparations to a family were. They had to take 3 vehicles and 14 soldiers to pay a family a 100 dollars for a daughter and 200 dollars each for goats struck by a convoy. It's hard to imagine having to (almost) point rifles at a family after killing their daughter. This was in the Shia area of southern Iraq, "American friendly" meaning they weren't attacked as often with as much organization. And this was a few years ago.
Afterwards I was thinking I missed an opportunity for a serious political discussion. I don't get many of them. Haven't had much practice. I guess you have to start somewhere. Are there any Z sustainers in the Philadelphia area? I've never met and spoken with a like-minded individual in English in the States. I'll have to explore the new Znet functions and see if I can work something out for my upcoming family visit back to Pa and Jersey.