Poor fighters: Another slightly uncomfortable question

Between thinking of ‘some slightly uncomfortable questions‘ posted by Sandmonkey yesterday and reading the last chapter of Nawal Saadawi life where she talked about her participations as a doctor in 1958, 1967 and 1968 wars against Israel, I felt bad, not only for those civilians getting killed in this current war on Lebanon but also for those fighters who are losing their lives as well.

Nawal gave an account of a young Palestinian fighter who lost both his arms and legs in Al Karama battle in the Jordanian Ghor in 1968. Coming from a poor background, Ghuassan, the young man dreamt of dying in the battle in order to have a place in heaven as they taught him. He felt honored for the first time in his life for being able to fight for his country and religion.

The proud hero became a begger after he lost his arms and legs in the war. Leaders took all the credit. Poor fighters like him got killed and forgotten, others lost their insanity, some lost body parts like him. No one left to take care of him, he didn’t get rewarded for his sacrifice, instead as Nawal says, when an Amrican leader used to visit the town, the government used to clean the street of those beggers.

The same happens in Egypt, real fighters who went to war against England ended up killed or in jail for becoming a threat to the afterward goverment. Real ones who fought for the revolution in Egypt, ended up in jail after the revolution as well. In reality, poor men fight for the rich. Poor men got killed and forgotten while rich gets the credit.

Sandmonkey’s blog, we talked about compassion for Israeli civilians. Many Arabs would feel rage even talking about such idea, some would consider it out of humanity reasons, but how many would feel sorry for Hezb-Allah fighters and Israeli soldiers?

Do those fighters on both sides deserve to die? Why do we feel happy when we hear about the numbers of fighters being killed of the other side rise? Humans are humans. Being in civilians customs or military customs, they are still humans. They are mis-guided, forced, and brainwashed to fight others battles. And at the end, they don’t get anything in return. Maybe some would be lucky to get a memorial ceremony at most, but a lot others would be forgotten in history.

Can’t we stop all this mess?


  1. First To answer you question “Can’t we stop all this mess?” Arab people should stop their mess in their way of thinking and how they think of others first then we move to the next step.When you mentioned fighters, I just remember how Iraq/Iran war was running. Saddam was throwing people “specially the educated ones” into war like garbage against their will then show them as heroes in TV to fool “Arab World” and as usual ARABS believe anything when it comes to WAR and Killing against anything not Arabic “racism issues”.The second thing which is interesting;is using regular people to protect fighters and Military plans, just like what happened in Kana in Lebanon and before that in “Al-Ameriya”, Just collect people and make them as targets to empower your position in war.Basically in Arab world a “Human Beings” are the cheapest tools in WAR and achieve a Specific goal.Fadi the real mess is in our ethics, the question is how to restore our ethics and abstract them from religion and religious people effects.


  2. I know what you are talking about Raid, but this isn’t just an Arabic issue. In every war, the poor are the people who fight, they pay the price for their masters while no body even care about their loss.Look at the American marines, most of them come from a poor background. You don’t find rich people going to war. As of Moore’s film, remember it? when he asked congress men in the US if they would let their sons fight for the country? Those leader don’t allow it. They just gain profits of others misery.


  3. You are right but I gave you the ARABS because they are the most perfect example and at least the environment we are living in.For American, they have their issues but at least when a solider dies in war as happening in IRAQ “even if he is black” they send him in respectable way to his country and put him in a well respectable grave, you got the point!, they respect their fighters more than we respect ourselves.


  4. There is an intersting tradition in Judaism regarding this.When the Israelites escaped from slavery in Egypt, it is said that G-d parted the sea (probably a tidal marsh near the current Suez canal) for them. After the Israelites crossed, the cavalry of the Pharoah pursued them into the sea. G-d closed the sea on them so that they all drowned.Upon seeing this, the angels in heaven started to sing. Gd silenced them, reminding them that the soldiers are his children, too, and that he was saddened at seeing them die. To this day, in celebrating Passover, Jews are commanded to acknowledge the tragedy of the deaths of the soldiers who were pursuing them, and commemorate this by spilling wine and abbreviating the singing of songs of praise. These are only symbolic gestures, of course, but they are meant to remind us that even after 3500 years, we have to temper our joy at liberation with sorrow for those who had to die so that we could be free from slavery.


  5. brooklynjon, this is interesting. I have heard about Jews espcaing from Egypt and the parted sea as it is written in the old testemony of the bible, but I have never heard about the angels,God’s part and Jews intake of this feeling sorrow for those who had to die. Thanks for sharing this 🙂


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