Dear Mr. President

Congratulations, but stop the killing!

Dear President Obama,

     This being my first letter to you on this blog, I  congratulate you with all my heart on becoming President of our really fine country.    You’ve done good things so far.  You’ve stopped torture; you’ve set out to close Guantánamo; you named excellent envoys in George Mitchell and Richard Holbrooke.   But now I must ask you something.  This is what I wrote in the website
     Are you going to continue the irresponsible unmanned bombing missions over Pakistan?   I just read that today we killed 10 people.   We said we had killed 5 “insurgents”.   That leaves 5 non-insurgents, right?  Please do something to stop the killing.

Sincerely, VNV


The Last Day: The Sorrows
January 19, 2009, 10:37 pm
Filed under: Bush, children, crime, death, election, ethics, Iraq, justice, news, Obama, peace, politics, U.S.A., war | Tags: , , , ,
Dear Mr. President,
     Today is your last full day as President of the United States, and this will be my last letter to you.   Consequently, I wanted to be conciliatory.  I wanted to find something good you had done and praise you. 
    Unfortunately there isn’t much to praise, but a great deal to mourn.   . 
     And yet you seem honestly to believe  you have done a fine job..  You seem to believe you have stuck to your beliefs, and that may be true.  You seem to believe that you have acted honestly, and that, too may be true.  But Mr. President, history is replete with tyrants who believed in what they were doing.  It is this very belief that has blinded you to the evil you have committed. 
       You have done those things which you ought not to have done; you have left undone those things which you ought to have done.  This is the human condition.  We are all of us sinners.  It’s just that your great power has made your sins the greater.  
 A picture is worth a thousand words.



No one died when Clinton lied

No one died when Clinton lied

 I do not wish you great unhappiness, Sir, but look at these faces.  Think of what you have done that you should have left undone.  The evil you have done will live after you.   These children of our land and the thousands of other children will not.

    So I end our correspondence as sadly as I began it, over two years and over 600 letters ago, wishing it were otherwise.   And yet, perhaps there is one bit of praise I can utter, all going well tomorrow:  That nothing in your tenure in office became you like the leaving of it.
Sincerely, VNV

One More Week
Dear Mr. President,
    Just think!  A week from today at this time, you will no longer be President!  Isn’t that wonderful?  You will no longer have the power to undermine the Constitution.  You will no longer be able to incite wars with your  prevarications.  You will no longer be able to pass judgments that end in death and destruction. You will no longer be able to authorize renditions of prisoners to countries that torture – and you will no longer be able to condone torture of our Prisoners of War.
    What a relief!  You must be very happy, Sir, finally to be able to cease sinning against God and humankind!
Sincerely, VNV

A Child in St. Johns
Dear Mr. President,
     Did you know there were countries that allowed children as young as 8 years of age to be incarcerated and tried as adults?  And did you know that one of those countries was ours?
     I am, of course, talking about that 8-year-old in St. Johns, Arizona, who is accused of having shot and killed his father and another man with a .22 rifle.  He apparently must have shot, reloaded, and shot again several times in order to accomplish this.
     I watched the video tapes of his supposed confession.  Did you?  Did you see what I saw:  a little boy, his legs dangling from a huge arm chair, questioned without the presence of parent, guardian, or lawyer, for several hours?  Did you hear what I heard?   Did you hear him describe coming home to see men jumping into a white vehicle and roaring off, then finding one man lying on the ground, then running into the house shouting “Dad!  Dad”, and finding his father upstairs with blood everywhere?  Did you hear him say he tried to see if his father was alive, then he sat down next to him and cried? 
   Of course, this was at the beginning of the session.  By the end, he was saying “I think I took the gun then?  I think I shot him because he was suffering?”  I have added the question-marks that I heard in that child’s voice.
    Now I hear tell that the family of the one murdered man is expressing anger that more concern is being shown for the age of this suspect boy than for the victims.  Well, yes.  Rightly so.  8-year-olds need our concern.  This is a child who, except for a 48-hour furlough, has been allowed only brief visits, usually behind glass, from his mother.  This is a child who, as far as we know, is just sitting there in a cell all by himself doing nothing.  He has been sitting there for a month.
     Somewhere in the world neither justice nor mercy is being shown.  Could it be in our own backyard?
     Have you concerned yourself with this issue, Mr. President?
Sincerely, VNV

Cluster bombs and bomblets
December 3, 2008, 5:10 pm
Filed under: Bush, children, death, ethics, Israel, news, peace, politics, Russia, U.S.A., war | Tags: , , , , , ,
Dear Mr. President,
     Words cannot express my extreme disgust at our country’s refusal to join almost the entire rest of the world in banning cluster bombs.  Why????  What good are they???    Have they won us one single war anywhere? 
    No.  They have maimed and killed countless children, but that’s about all they are good for.  I cannot believe that we need to kill off children in order to make the world safe for democracy. 
    And don’t give me that tired argument that the Russians and the Chinese aren’t signing on, either.   Does that make it better, to know that we are in agreement with two of the most repressive non-democracies in the world?  As for Israel, didn’t they just recently use cluster bombs in Lebanon and then say they didn’t?  Why did they deny it?  Because the use of cluster bombs is shameful, that’s why.   
    So do one good thing during your Presidency.  Ban the bomblets!
Sincerely, VNV

Afghanistan Murder
November 6, 2008, 6:41 pm
Filed under: Afghanistan, Bush, crime, death, ethics, news, peace, politics, terror, U.S.A., war | Tags: , , ,
Dear Mr. President,
     What if the Mexicans flew missions across our border and killed, oh let’s say around 60 U.S. civilians, including women and children, whilst trying to fight some pesky Communist terrorists hiding in the hills near San Diego?
     My God Sir!  60 people! people! humans! civilians! not fighters!  And we just say “Oops!  Sorry!”  How can we? 
     Maybe you could imagine it better if you tried to picture those Mexicans sending an armed drone over Crawford, Texas.  Picture the people, running, screaming, bleeding, dying.  Maybe imagining the deaths of citizens of Crawford, of friends of yours, or even of your own family will help you to understand why even our good buddy Hamid Karsai wants us to stop those awful raids.
    So stop them!
Sincerely, VNV

Glorious Fourth
July 4, 2008, 8:09 pm
Filed under: Bush, Constitution, crime, death, ethics, Iraq, news, peace, politics, war | Tags: ,
Dear Mr. President,
     Eleven-score and twelve years ago, our fathers brought forth upon this continent a new nation, conceived in liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal.  In seven short years, you have made it questionable that a nation so conceived and so dedicated can long endure.  You have destroyed our freedoms and diminished equality.  You have undermined our constitution and led us into a futile war. 
    You have forced our brave soldiers, both living and dead, to consecrate with their blood battlefields in an illegal war,and this you have ordered in our name and in the name of freedom.
     You, sir, should be impeached.
Sincerely, VNV