War Should Not Be Treated As A Game

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To:
Mr. Bob Wright, Vice Chairman and Executive Officer
GE Chairman and Chief Executive Officer
NBC Universal Headquarters
30 Rockefeller Plaza
New York, NY 10112

I have lived and worked in areas of military conflict.  Why, why is NBC producing “Stars Earn Stripes”?  War is not a game.  Does corporate America think it is?  Here are media — Comcast, NBC, GE; there are military contractors who profit from war, developing  nastier and nastier weapons, providing sub-contractors and civilians for ‘chores’ formerly assigned to military personnel,  thus freeing young military personnel to serve as ‘cannon fodder’ in these wars (the wealthy young need not apply for this function) — General Wesley Clark knows this.  I repeat, war is not — should not be treated as — a game.  People are slaughtered in their villages and homes.  Villages and homes are the ‘battle fields.’  With what do the villagers — some sleeping or sleepy inside homes or on roofs — fight?  Countries are destroyed, societies  and societal ways radically changed, cultural creations ruined/pillaged — General Clark knows this.  We destroyed Iraq — oops, no weapons of mass destruction.  A mistake can be erased, corrected.  It was not a mistake and it was/is not a game, certainly not to the Iraqis. The attack and war were neither defensive, nor pre-emptive, nor preventive and not a game!  (Background note:  Iraq had been aided by us during the Iran Iraq war but Iraq also declined to lay an oil pipeline down to Aqaba!)

In view of our recent military actions, why would NBC design a program glorifying our application of military skills; do civilians now require on-line boot-camp training?  Must we, should we glorify our militarism?  Is this what we desire for our country, for this and future generations?  Our country has loftier endeavors needing attention.

Implicit in military action is slaughter and destruction. WAR IS NOT A GAME!  How about a TV game program where contestants examine specific current (or past) international conflicts and  really look into REAL cause(s), underlying and immediate,  of the conflict and then make recommendations for remedial action?  Contestants could be rewarded on the basis of their analyses and recommendations — the rewards to be used for a decided upon purpose.  Such might provide some thoughts for the moving away from gratuitous war and from the unfortunate making of ‘a peace to end all peace’ — (“A Peace to End All Peace –The Fall of the Ottoman Empire and the Creation of the Modern Middle East,” by David Fromkin, 1989.)

– Barbara Walker
for the Granny Peace Brigade