Wars Are Not Fought on Battlefields

Wednesday 19 January 2011
by: David Swanson, t r u t h o u t | Book Excerpt

We talk of sending soldiers off to fight on battlefields. The word ‘battlefield’ appears in millions, possibly billions, of news stories about our wars. And the term conveys to many of us a location in which soldiers fight other soldiers. We don’t think of certain things being found in a battlefield. We don’t imagine whole families, or picnics, or wedding parties, for example, as being found on a battlefield — or grocery stores or churches. We don’t picture schools or playgrounds or grandparents in the middle of an active battlefield. We visualize something similar to Gettysburg or World War I France: a field with a battle on it. Maybe it’s in the jungle or the mountains or the desert of some distant land we’re “defending,” but it’s some sort of a field with a battle on it. What else could a battlefield be?

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