[thingist] The War Is Coming

Keith Sanborn mrzero at panix.com
Thu Sep 10 21:32:17 UTC 2020


> On Sep 10, 2020, at 3:48 PM, sebastian at rolux.org wrote:
> The War is Coming
> For Ghayath al-Madhoun and his million Arab poets
> 1.
> I decided to leave Syria the day a stray bullet passed in front of my eyes. 
> That day I realized my homeland was not my homeland, my blood not my blood, and 
> my freedom belonged to a freedom fighter who didn't think to ask my permission 
> before he shot me: a lack of courtesy we encounter often in war time.
> 2.
> If they are going to kill me, better to kill me in a foreign language.
> 3.
> On the road from Damascus to Berlin I met an old soldier from Dara'a who 
> couldn't carry his nightmares anymore. I wrapped them and put them in my 
> suitcase; at the airport I paid the fine for excess baggage.
> 4.
> Whoever is not afraid to cross the border carries the war on his back.
> 5.
> Swap your best shirt for a bulletproof vest, your poems for the first chapter 
> of the Koran and your house in Athens for a throne atop Mount Aigaleo so you 
> can survey from on high the coming war.
> 6.
> This war is trite and pedestrian, filled with similes and ornate adjectives, 
> its history is written in the font Comic Sans, violence so limitless the war 
> doesn't know where to put it, one grave for every thousand corpses, one shadow 
> for every thousand survivors, it's an indelicate war, barrels vomiting 
> explosives, steel cylinders filled with accessories for washing machines and 
> car parts, the death that disseminates is an earthy death, this war is 
> rightfully ours because in it we have buried all our loved ones.
> 7.
> On the 7th of January 2014, the United Nations stopped counting Syria's dead. 
> This decision certified mathematics as the science of quality, not quantity, of 
> living labor, not shapes, of time, not space - in other words, mathematics is 
> the science that studies the material relations among all countable objects.
> 8.
> By the end of 2015, according to Facebook, 311 friends of mine had died since 
> the start of the war. I decided to shut down my account: death must have a 
> beginning, middle, and end. I can't spend my life in its wake.
> 9.
> I, Ahmed, son of Aisha, although nothing more than a humble migrant, wish to 
> apologize on behalf of the Syrians to Greek men and women for filling their 
> televisions with our deaths as they eat their dinners and wait for their 
> favorite shows, I wish to apologize to the municipal authorities for leaving 
> our trash on their beaches and polluting their shores with tons of plastic, we 
> are uncivilized and we have no environmental awareness, I wish to apologize to 
> the hotel owners and tour operators for damaging the island tourist industry, I 
> wish to apologize for shattering the stereotype of the miserable migrant with 
> our mobile phones and clean clothes, I wish to apologize to the coast guard who 
> have the thankless task of sinking our boats, to the police for standing in 
> disorderly lines, to the bus drivers who have to wear surgical masks to protect 
> themselves from the diseases we carry, I also wish to make a most humble 
> apology to Greek society for exceeding the capacity of their detention camps 
> and for sleeping in their squares and parks - finally, I wish to apologize to 
> the Greek government who had to request additional funds from the European 
> Union in order to pay the purveyors who stock the detention camps, as well as 
> the bus drivers, the police, the coast guard, the tour operators, the hotel 
> owners, the municipal authorities, and the television stations.
> 10.
> "Don't worry," said the bullet, "I'll go in and out." I explained to her that I 
> couldn't allow it since when she left she was bound to take some of my memories 
> - like the face of the girl I loved in the fifth grade, the voice of the imam 
> the first time my father took me to pray, the smell of the freshly baked bread 
> in my grandmother's house, the fingers of my teacher as she taught me to write 
> the word الحرب and Van Basten's final goal in the Euro of '88.
> 11.
> It's well known that no organization can buy arms on the black market without 
> American authorization. This is one of the reasons I never managed to 
> understand the difference between enlightenment and genocide.
> 12.
> If you don't want to be canon fodder, if you don't want the war to catch you 
> with your pants down, put on that thinking cap, double down the class struggle, 
> get organized, triple down the class struggle, fight, fill your pockets with 
> rocks, stick to your guns.
> Out with the Left! 
> Bring back the Spartacists!
> Out with the NGO's! 
> Bring back Garibaldi's brigades!
> Out with the Humanists! 
> Bring back the Italian Autonomists!
> The slaughter is about to begin.
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