Why did so many women warriors die for liberty in Iraq? Why were
they POWs? Why were they tortured? Beaten? Was
Iraq a "woman's war?" Was it a war of Vigilance, fought by
Mothers of Vigilance?
15, 2003—Ground Zero Plus 580
Women Warriors--Fighting & Dying For Iraqi Mothers' Children
Editor, New York City Combat Correspondent News
GROUND ZERO, New York City, Apr. 15--When examining the purpose of
the war in Iraq, I wonder how many philosophers will focus on how
American women--including mothers--fought and some died so that Iraqi
women and mothers and their children could be free?
A new tableau
is unfolding: mothers are willing to die other mothers and
War protest focuses on the male side of violence. It puts
men in the crosshairs, suggesting that war is a testosterone-based
effort to dominate the weak.
But, in the aftermath of the Iraqi
war, a new tableau is unfolding. It is the picture of
women willing to die not only for their country, but more importantly,
to die for the safety and security of the people of another
nation--specifically, for the other mothers and children.
There are a few examples worthy of
Pfc. Lori Piestewa, the first Native American woman killed in
combat, and son
One is Pfc. Lori Piestewa, Jessica Lynch's roommate. Lori
was a 23-year-old single mother raising a 4-year-old boy and
3-year-old girl. She was the first Native American woman killed
in combat, a member of the Hopi 11,000-member tribe.
Ironically, Hopis are a non-warring tribe. They are
considered the caretakers of the Earth, the peaceful guardians.
Fifty-six Hopis are members of the Armed Services, 45 of whom are
serving in Iraq.
Lori was part of the Army's
507th Maintenance Company ambushed on March 23. She was
one of eight bodies found after rescue teams freed Jessica Lynch from
a hospital where she was held captive.
Shoshana Johnson, recently released POW
Then there is Army Spc. Shoshana Johnson, one of the seven recently
released POWS who spent three weeks behind enemy lines.
The world saw Shoshana on al-Jazeera television, being questioned by
Iraqi soldiers. She is a single mother of a 2-year-old
daughter. The pictures of her limping as she was released
toward a plane set to fly her and other POWs to safety, is a reminder
of the price she was willing to pay, and paid in part, to the Iraqi
Captain Kim Campbell, known as "KC",
also belongs on the list of women willing to die for other women.Women
Campbell, "KC", was willing to die for her country
An A-10 Warthog pilot, 27-year-old KC was flying combat missions over
Baghdad on April 7. The Warthog is an anti-tank aircraft,
specifically designed to search and destroy enemy tanks.
As KC was diving toward enemy positions, her jet came under
anti-aircraft fire. It was hit, knocking out her hydraulic
system. The hydraulic system is like power brakes versus manual,
you need only a light touch when hydraulics are being used.
She switched to manual operation.
Using two hands on the stiff, unresponsive
controls, she used all her strength to pull the plane out of a dive.
It was heading toward a crash in Baghdad, an option KC sought to avoid
at all costs.
She muscled the plane's controls until it
began to respond, and, for the next hour, grunted and groaned as she
used her physical strength to guide the aircraft toward friendly
territory. She made a safe landing, despite the
plane being riddled with bullets and shrapnel from the anti-aircraft.
Warthog riddled with bullets and shrapnel
KC, after landing, called her husband who is also on active duty, and
her family to let them know she was fine.
She is one of 114 active duty female pilots.
In 1993 women were authorized to fly in combat missions.
In contrast to the 114 female pilots, there are 7,735 male fighter and
bomber pilots active in the Armed Forces, according to the Pentagon.
Women in the military are growing.
There currently are more than 210,000 women on active duty, and
another 150,000 in the reserves.
The war in Iraq is perplexing in nature.
Politically, it presents a host of issues,
often lead by the question: "Does America have the right to make
a preemptive strike against another nation?"
Domestically, it creates rifts between pro-
and anti-war factions.
Diplomatically, it drives wedges between
nations who once were allies, and now look at one another with
distrust and disgust.
But, through the threads of differences, is
sewn one common hem--perhaps best stitched by the presence of American
women warriors. That is what I will call for simplicity
purposes: The Mothers of Vigilance (MoVs)
Mothers of Vigilance are those MoVs who
stand willing to die for other mothers.
The first woman to die in the war, and the
first Native American in Armed Forces history to die in combat, was a
mother of two children. She was also part of a tribe of
peacekeepers, the Hopi, who are caretakers of the Earth.
There is great power in Lori Piestewa's death.
She is, was, the Womb of War.
For countless generations, her tribe
has been given the duty of peacekeeper, guardian of the Earth.
She went to Iraq along with Pfc. Lynch, Spc. Johnson, and Captain
K.C., to bring peace to a land ripped in torment.
Those eager to move on with the news
and pass over the death of Lori Piestewa need to stop and ask the
"How come a Native American woman, mother
of two, died in Iraq?"
"How come Spc. Shoshana Johnson, single
mother of one child, was freed with other POWs at the end of the war?"
"How come Captain KC was able to pull her
plane out of a deadly dive after it was ripped by enemy fire?"
"How come Pfc. Jessica Lynch was the first
successful POW rescue since World War II?"
"And how come Pfc. Lynch endured so
much pain that an Iraqi lawyer and his wife risked their lives making
countless trips between U.S. forces and enemy forces to give
information leading to the successful release of Lynch?"
If one takes these questions,
plus the countless others that rise from the fact that women in the
Armed Services are willing to die for their country and the cause of
freedom, it provokes the issue of Vigilance.
standing up to the Beast of Terror
When women are willing to die for other women, even at the expense of
their own motherhood, what does that mean?
Women with children fighting a
war for people in a far off land signals, at least to me, their clear
vision to the need for Vigilance over Terrorism.
When I think of the
Jessica Lynch's, the KC's, the Shoshana Johnson's, the Lori
Piestewa's, I see Mothers of Vigilance standing with Swords of
Vigilance and Shields of Vigilance gathering the children around them.
They stand up to the Beast of Terror who seeks to attack and conquer
the children with the Beast's Fear, Intimidation and Complacency.
From the air, the
ground, the sea, the women attack.
from the air, ground and sea
They use incredible Courage, unwavering Conviction, and the fuel of
Right Actions in behalf of the Iraqi women's Children's Children's
Children to cripple the Beast of Terror.
Each is ready,
willing and able to give her life in defense of the children.
As Mothers of
Vigilance, they represent symbols of strength and purpose that far
exceed the political and diplomatic reasons why we are in Iraq, and
counter the reasons why we shouldn't be.
fought in Iraq had the ultimate edge over all the other warriors:
they had wombs
It is clear that the women who fought and those who died in Iraq, had
the ultimate edge over all other warriors.
They all had wombs.
They were all either
mothers or potential mothers.
Their willingness to die
was clearly based on the safety of future generations--specifically
for the children.
If there is a pure
reason why we fought and won such a decisive victory in Iraq, it may
be solely because the world saw American women willing to die for the
people of another land.
It wasn't the men of
America who stood out as the heroes, the one's willing to die.
It was the women.
Proud, dignified Mothers
of Vigilance, offered their lives.
When Iraqi soldiers saw
the willingness of American women to die, perhaps that message helped
crush their will to die for Saddam.
While we might never know
the exact reason why the enemy so quickly gave up, I speculate that
one Hopi Indian woman--a caretaker of the Earth--with two young
children, may have spoken to the Mothers of Vigilance in Iraq through
The Sisters of
Vigilance will guide the Citizens of Vigilance to peace and
Her spirit, urged by the willingness of her fellow Sisters of
Vigilance, may have thundered through the sand and beat a tattoo of
peace that begged the Mothers and Fathers of Vigilance to not fight
for the Beast of Terror.
Iraqis stopped fighting.
The war ended quietly.
Hopefully, the peace will
Hopefully, the spirit of
Lori Piestewa, and all her Sisters of Vigilance, will guide the
Citizens of Vigilance, the Mothers and Fathers of Vigilance, to a
state of peace and prosperity.
14--Flower Power Blooms Despite Weeds Of War
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