CIVILIZED WAR: A POEM

CIVILIZED WAR: A POEM  

We’ve not become so civilized as to end war:
But we’ve become too civilized to win war.
We decry the necessary brutality that war summons
taking pains to avert another Dresden,
While our enemies lop off heads;
and, laugh at our Geneva Convention vanity,
from urban redoubts behind civilian kryptonite.

They are not hypocrites like us,
who pretend that war has rules,
lest we not feel good about ourselves.
Perhaps it is that the wars we have
chosen to fight of late, are not of survival.
Perhaps they have been mechanisms
of greed to oil the economic wheels.

Perhaps we would recover the strength of will
to see war clearly, if the threat were existential.
Perhaps we would then deploy at war
the fullest, most brutal measure of our power
adhering only to the one honest rule of war,
should we be dragged into its madness –
that immoral slaughterhouse –
“Win by whatever device necessary.”

Knowing that afterwards, it is the victors
who will order rules, the vanquished
will be charged to have violated.

© 2014 by Robert S. Steinberg, Esquire
All rights reserved

WAR CAN MAKE YOUR RICH

Hawks in DC are once again beating the war drums suggesting we get involved in Syria and attack Iran. The questions to be asked: What giant corporations stand to benefit from such action?  How much is contributed to campaign coffers by defense industry companies?  What reason for huge defense budgets absent an ongoing state of fear and war?  Which wars since WWII were fought from necessity or existential threat?  Do these suggested involvements meet that test?

WAR CAN MAKE YOUR RICH
(To tune of “Autumn in New York,” by Vernon Duke)

War can make you rich
If you’re among the connected
War can make you rich
Contract outsourcing perfected

Afghanistan, Iraq and Iran
Hold dividend yields
Those mean battle fields
Bleed gold

War can make you rich
The war machine needs supplying
War can make you rich
If you’ve the right kind of friends

Young men will wave goodbye
Don’t mention how many die
War can make you rich
The reason war never ends

Lyric © 2013 by Robert S. Steinberg, Esquire
All rights reserved

ALL IN THE NAME OF ONE GOD

This post relates to the terrible events in Boston, although it’s not know that religious fanatics perpetrated the act. But, one might rightly ask, “What kind of God allows such horror?”

ALL IN THE NAME OF ONE GOD
(To tune of “Lost in the Stars,” by Kurt Weill and Maxwell Anderson from the 1949 Broadway Show of the same name).

First they killed all the Christians ‘cause they didn’t like them
Then they killed every Muslim in Jerusalem
Then they murdered the Jews knelt in prayer to Ha Shem
All in the name, of one God.

So a child sets a bomb off without any shame
Without feeling guilt, with a purpose to maim
Saying God has commanded, the dead bear the blame
All in the name of one God

Now if God made, everything on earth
Each of his children, would have equal worth
And love would prevail, but of that there’s a dearth
Making what to believe in so hard

So, I’ve been gazing towards the heavens above
Asking whoever is up there, please send down some love
Quiet the lions, awaken the dove
And give us a kind world, a God’s worthy of
We’re all mortals, spare us the rod
All in the name of one God
All in the name of one God.

Lyric © 2013 by Robert S. Steinberg, Esquire
All rights reserved