This is an experimental story I'm working on about someone writing letters to his/her friend (*the friend is known but the author of the letter is never known) during a time of war. S/he is writting in order to reconcile the meaning of war and his/her purpose in it.
Maybe there is just one Truth with many Voices leading to it...
All Roads Lead North
No matter which direction I face, it’s always North.
Never Too Late to Begin 1
There was a time in my life when my beliefs were questioned and once when those particular beliefs were truly tested. What did I believe in and how could I even be human with such beliefs? But it’s not an easy answer –no real answer is ever that easy. I believe that we humans are neither perfect nor the best creation in any sense of the word best. If we were, we wouldn’t seek to be perfect –if we were, we wouldn’t have the sense of becoming “better.” We wouldn’t be searching (for what?)...
We can only glimpse at the Truth that we hope to emulate, except that in doing so we begin to justify our actions. These justifications tend to reflect the deep recesses of our hearts. Our hearts are in turmoil so we seek peace wherever we may find it externally–hence justifying wars. Yet, lately war has been used to justify freedom. It makes more sense since the basic premise of any fight (grandscale or not) is the privilege of being right -the privilege of asserting ones own authority over others (how then, is that freedom? Exchanging old shackles for newer ones hardly seems freeing). While having (rather, creating) a sense of order isn't a "bad" thing in my book, abusing that privilege of power is crossing the line. It makes sense that destruction is quite devastating and we want to preserve our species -but at the detriment of ALL living things? We create this absurd notion of "races" and proceed to try preserving a particular one by destroying all others (in all aspects). The most extreme case has been genocide! I've never seen any other life form try so hard to end its own species. Only humans do that. All in the name of (sacred) life. Humans need not outlive their usefulness all in the name of breaking the existing laws of nature! Humans the rebellious lot...but I digress. Continuing on the issue of peace:
Only peace is peace for war by its very nature is not peaceful nor does it create a situation for peace. We end up questioning war and its justifications but not its source of contention (which again, is internal). But what is the assumption when one thinks about the word “peace”? “Get along with” –that’s ridiculous (for that's tolerance)! (Besides) There are varying degrees of “getting along” and it only proves we can play the social game, not that we’re peaceful internally. We say we want peace, but the only way to really have peace is to practice peace -NOT telling others to practice it, but leading by example. We live in a diverse world: just as venting frustrations is good, not all forms venting is best -and where some views are simply non-negotiable, it may just be best to allow Time to weather those storms. I strongly suspect that people who want to make the world "fair" and "balanced" want to do so under their own rules by their own control and not by what is already in place. (After all, those who change the rules do so because they can't stand losing: want to understand things not by how it already is but by what they want to see. Even taking a "hands off" approach is counter productive --perfect breeding grounds for tyranny).
What I really find comfort in, is the fact that humans never change even when we endeavor to do so. There will always be wars such is the nature of balance. The world was before humans and will after humans regardless of human endeavor. It’s precisely human vanity to create morals and find purpose to a meager existence (but one that is nonetheless shared by all others!)
Speaking of meager existence, I had nothing better to do than to waste time searching for the answer to one question: why were we invading the Eylah of the North? Even after all I’ve said about justifications (this, that the other) my heart would never allow me rest until I’ve uncovered the Truth. The Truth is, we could abstractly argue against war and cry peace, peace! But the reality is; we’re already at war. I want more concrete and practical answers than abstract idealism. So who’s the real enemy? If this was a conquest of expansion the North would’ve been ours long ago. We don’t need their raw resources and they haven’t violated any of our border laws so… Why now? We’re already stretched thin because of the conflict with our Southern Aiyan neighbors as well as the defense of our Eastern border even though our draft laws have been [recently] repealed! Nonetheless, we’re at war with our Northern brothers with this as our only explanation:
Failed Diplomacy Results in War
After prolonged negotiations with President Morossos, neither parties were satisfied with any of the terms of the treaty. President Morossos declared that our presence was no longer welcomed, and immediate departure is appreciated. However, independent companies and firms [from our country] created successful businesses there, and a substantial amount of the North’s income come from their generated revenue. The withdrawal of our troops is also non-negotiable: NO troops are to remain stationed there or at the borders. Students who attend universities are asked to leave immediately upon graduation –no new applicants [from our country] will be considered. … … …
It’s not necessarily true that a failed diplomacy results in war –are there really no other solutions? I hoped that there would at least be a rational explanation (or context!) from our leaders regarding the North but they provided no satisfactory explanation –only excuses (as usual). Maybe we do provide the military to man their borders…against ourselves, since we are the only country bordering it to the South…Why IS our military still there? We have trading agreements with them, but does that necessitate troops already stationed there? Were we occupying them at any point in history for any reason at all? Perhaps for strategic reasons...except that the location of our "base" is nowhere near harbors or ports but cities). And only recently have any hostilities been expressed in this magnitude.
Maybe we generate a substantial amount of their revenue…but generating money doesn’t guarantee where it gets spent…Our CEOs live in the North, if they don't observe the laws they get penalized by OUR system. That would make sense IF our system actually penalizes white collar crime (we don't). CEOs also press for laws that would benefit their companies rather than benefit all in question (an ungrateful gesture) thereby negatively affecting our entire nation's status as allies. Perhaps extreme, but the fact is they DO negatively affect our relationship with the North.
And possibly our students may participate in protests and cause general mayhem –not to condone their behavior, but it is normal (as a fellow democratic nation they should know it is "normal"). And if these were true problems (not to belittle it, but to put this in context) why is President Morossos flexing his muscles now? He can't run for re-election, so what is the real issue? This is an extreme (agressive) approach coming from the North, having no known history of strong animosity towards us, although, if anything serious transpired we were able to have frank discussions...but then again President Morossos and our current President Soavez never had gotten along...is it really necessary to involve ALL of us into their petty disputes and make issues bigger than they really are?
I find it hard to accept this world without any fighting at all –even predators kill to eat. (We have moral reasons not to, yet we justify killing anyway.) What I don’t believe is fighting meaningless battles –so I decided to legitimate my presence over there as a nurse. Before I go on, of course the article laid out terms of us leaving the North-but there was no agreement on a definite, specific time frame. As well you know, we're a nation of thieves ~ our creativity thrives in finding loopholes and as such, I don't doubt that we (the military) will still be there well after this whole debacle. Being a research journalist left a fleeting impression on my mind…yet as fun as it may be, being targeted by allies and foes alike isn’t my ideal way of obtaining information. And really, how much information is true ~who willingly and readily tells a journalist anything? Besides, I can’t write –you know this.
At any rate, it was certainly a beautiful day when I registered –how nonchalant I felt, such an easy process too. It wasn’t a long wait and when it was my turn the recruiter had asked me to state my purpose (Why was I there?! Would you seriously turn down much needed help?) So I gave the usual spiel –the soldiers need healing. I would be honored to serve (etc.) He went through the usual cautionary speech then explained the benefits of joining and welcomed me aboard.
It’s a good thing I joined, there’s really nothing else for me to do here. I was becoming bored with life –even making up goals and purpose[s] became undesirable–all just lies and a false direction. Why work for something you don’t believe in –it’s called merely surviving. If I wanted to do that, I’d live in the jungle (At least it’s more exciting). Well, I mean as much as I wanted to work, my goal isn't to become rich, but there's not many jobs that really hold my interest. I really wish I could just be a career student, but that requires funds I simply don't have...I have many interests and hobbies yet in my mind, as soon as I "need" to do those hobbies as a function of living than enjoyment I lose interest in the hobby. (Do I just hate the idea of doing a hobby to "earn" money -I don't want it, but I "need" it. In my perfect world, people are honest and don't need money to deal with each other... unfortunately, I live in this one, so it'll have to do). Being in the service at least allows me to travel and earn money while doing it -and in the event I have nowhere to return to at least I have somewhere to go.