I missed a call last night – common enough for me, since I turn my phone to vibrate during the day and usually forget to change the ringer when I set it down at home. The call I missed was from my dad… he was letting me know that he’ll be going to Baghdad, Iraq in two weeks. My dad is in the Air Force Reserves, doing a project on archives. He’s fifty-something. Why the !@#? is he going to Iraq?
I tried calling back when I got the message but it was already really late in their time zone, so I didn’t have any luck. I have no idea how early they leave in the mornings, so I’m just waiting till tonight to get the full story. I’m having a roller coaster of emotions about this news. On the one hand, I know plenty of people go to Iraq regularly without getting hurt. I’ve heard about the soldiers coming back and saying it’s not as bad there as the media says. On the other hand, the sheer senselessness of this government of ours having a stupid war and then sending a fifty-something archivist to the heart of it makes me so mad, I want to petition for the abolishment of the whole Republican party. But, of course, that would leave my father without a political party.
As the title says, this was news I never expected. The best way for me to describe my feelings/reaction is this: I see the war in Iraq as a lethal virus and I’ve just found out that the government has given my dad the virus.