The Misfortune Teller

Polemical Poetry XII: The Iraq Catastrophe

Michael Murry.  Introduction by William Astore. Iraq is in the news again.  As ISIS continues to expand its power, U.S. politicians engage in rehashing dishonest debates about “bad” intelligence in regards to Iraq (vintage 2002-03) or in recriminations about who did or is “losing” Iraq, e.g. this article from today’s New York Times about how…

The Misfortune Teller

Polemical Poetry XI: Remembering Bush’s Iraq War

Michael Murry.  Introduction by William Astore. It’s fascinating to witness Republican candidates for president continuing to swing and miss as they’re tossed softball questions about George W. Bush’s invasion of Iraq in 2003.  Jeb Bush was first at bat.  He initially said he’d invade Iraq all over again; then he got testy about answering “hypothetical”…

Sniper Chris Kyle Did Not Live Long Enough

Walter Stewart (Major General, U.S. Army, retired) Sniper Chris Kyle did not live long enough.  I don’t say this in the context of his and Chad Littlefield’s senseless murder at the hands of a supposed brother-in-arms, but in the context of the American Sniper movie trailer that has Kyle saying, “I’m willing to meet my…

The Misfortune Teller

Polemical Poetry X: Dead Metaphors

Michael Murry I wrote this poem in 2005, two years after U.S. President George (Deputy Dubya) Bush’s notorious “Mission Accomplished” proclamation. With the U.S. Military hopelessly mired in the twin quagmires of Iraq and Afghanistan and desperately searching for any face-saving way out, I understood the predictable predicament, since I served eighteen months as a…

Veterans Day, 2014

Daniel N. White I always liked the original name for this holiday, Armistice Day, and the idea behind it—celebrating the last war this country would ever fight, a lot better than its current iteration as Veterans Day, honoring all the veterans who “served” this country in peace or war.  The Great War (1914-18) certainly wasn’t…

The Misfortune Teller

Polemical Poetry IX: Soldier’s Soldier

Michael Murry As I believe either Barbara Tuchman or Frances FitzGerald wrote about Vietnam: once a war has gone on for more than a couple of years it can only repeat itself indefinitely. This poem focuses on America’s War on Southeast Asia (Vietnam, Cambodia, and Laos), but it has much to say about America’s current…