Tuesday, October 17, 2023

Shadows of War

On September 8, the world was rocked by the incursion onto Israeli territory by gunmen directed by Hamas, the radical group in control of Gaza – from the extremely tiny territory of Gaza populated by over 2 million inhabitants that have been subjected to a severe and unconscionable blockade for 16 years. This blockade has successfully interdicted shipments of such important commodities as medical supplies, water and with effective control of electrical power that is supplied to this enclave. Free passage out of Gaza by Palestinians has been made virtually impossible. Gaza has been described as the world’s largest outdoor prison.

On Sept 8, a state of war became the second major global conflict in the human world adding to the ongoing Russia-Ukraine War.

My thoughts on this situation –

At times like these, it is tempting to take sides and offer a plethora of rationalizations regarding the infinite wisdom of going to war and fill ourselves with a sense of righteousness ennobled by our grievances. And yet, the age-old song of violence and retribution gets played once again. And once again, humanity is infected with a bolus of rage and hatred that will ultimately get us nowhere. And once again, true human progress is thwarted.

What is not clearly understood is that the human world is heading towards an unsustainable future, for humanity is undermining its own prospects by maintaining a structure with a vast imbalance in the distribution of wealth and the reliance on massive violence and death to sustain the status quo. This subservience to power leads inevitably to needless suffering on a massive scale. In addition to this recurring onslaught, we are collectively laying waste to the biological infrastructure that sustains all of life.

Shadows of War

Darkness once again falls

heavily upon this tiresome human world.

Shadows of war

propelled by ridiculous dreams of dominance and empire

sustained by minds

unable to see the horrid future they project,

unwilling to embrace the pain and suffering

they inflict,

unreceptive to the laments of mothers

over the children forever lost to the shrill

call of bombs and bullets

as explosions rip through the fabric of neighborhoods,

unrepentant for the death they distribute

to the innocent like candy,

for all the blood and bones and carnage,

for all the wrecked lives and distorted hatred

injected into the future,

unable to embrace all of humanity as equals,

ever ready to crawl into bed

with hollow and pointless death.

Shadows of war,

a long and tiresome story

revisited again and again

the litany long,

the dark foreboding song always the same,

the list seeming endless,

stretching back

to the very beginnings of


How long can Homo sapiens endure?

how long can the natural world

upon which we depend

sustain us?

when we choose

chaos over harmony

needless death and unimagined suffering

over love and life,

darkness over light,

stupidity over real intelligence

over and over again.

Darkness once again falls

heavily upon this tiresome human world.

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