War… what is it good for? Absolutely nothing. The original title of Tolstoy’s most famous book. Instead he settled on War and Peace, and we will never know if the original title would have created more success for the underrated Russian thriller.
But war, is it all bad? Can men in indie-kid clothes, shooting at other men forced into battle by their CIA backed tyrants, really be wrong? Is oppressing inferior races who don't believe in allergies and refuse to wear jeans, necessarily a bad thing? Yes. But pushing that to one side, ever since childhood when we crashed a plastic truck over our little sister’s head to steal a wham bar, we realised the joy of battle. It is only one step from the crib to the SAS. My father picked me out as a soldier as young as three, as he’d spent all the family’s savings on MDMA and heard the army was a sweet deal.
Living with the British soldiers, in Iraq, 2003, I learnt the true price of war. I was shocked to see them cower in fear each night, popping speed cubes, biting their fingernails through their bullet proof gloves, cringing as the Colonel screams for one more yard, one more push, one more dead body, that will lead to the end of this terrifying though necessary war. One soldier, who shall remain anonymous, due to him being an unreliable source and not strictly speaking in the army, said, ‘I can’t take this, the Americans have killed my family, I have no food or water, why is this happening?.’ ‘Shit, ‘I replied, ‘I didn’t mean to interview you.’
I was lucky enough to be positioned in Baghdad when Tony Blair arrived to smirk at the troops and pull some Iraqi Chicks. You could say I looked into the eyes of death and realised just how much I needed telly to convince me it would be alright. The men and I were gathered on the basement floor of a high-rise block of flats near the centre of town. It was cold. Soldiers had to sit on top of each other. Some men were gazing at the ceiling as the plastic chairs bent back.
Tony skipped in, waggled his lips with a finger, half turned and whacked the back of his hand against his forehead, announcing, ‘teeeerup!’ Soldiers stared, their jaws slowly falling open, eyelids flickering as Blair waved in two Iraqi boys, pushing a lazy-boy. Blair collapsed into the leather seat and flicked the footrest up. He groaned, pulled a Cadbury’s fruit and nut from his pocket and tore into it.
‘Now,’ Blair chomped, ‘I’m gonna cut straight to da chase. Big anti-war protests, lotsa people slagging me off, yeah? Well the long and da short of it is, I’m banning youse from killing people,y'understand?’
‘Pardon?’ Colonel Godamn asked.
‘Sorry, jus don’t make me look good, ya git me.’
‘How do expect us to defeat the enemy Prime-minister?’
‘Well, dope question, homeboy. I believe we are de most charming mo-fuckers on de planet, yeah?’
‘Yeah so if some geezer giving you shit, screwing, yeah, you just slide up to him and slip ‘im a spliff. Blow a kiss t‘is ladee yeah…? That type o’ shit. I’m outta here check youse all later. Peace out.’
Watching enemy children, hanging off your fellow soldiers' shoulders, clasping each leg, bashing him to death with stones, while unable to retaliate by shooting them in the head with an AK, is a sad sight. But this is the way warfare has been for centuries. An out of touch leader makes decisions from his underground bunker thousands of miles away from the bloody horror-show, declaring war, while enforcing a one-sided, undeclared ceasefire. All of this made irrelevant by the American's carpet-bombing campaign killing millions.
Ain't war hell?! Yeah boyeee!