by Mike Bryan – Common Dreams
Mr. President, please attack Appalachia.
You have promised the Iraqis that they will share in the wealth of their oil. We could use some of that same sharing here. We have coal and timber that is being extracted, yet very little of the profits remain in our area. If the Iraqis are to share in the profits from their natural resources, we would like to share in the profits from ours.
You have promised healthcare for all Iraqis. We could use the same thing here. Far too many of us are without health insurance and adequate access to good healthcare facilities. You have also promised to rebuild the schools in Iraq. We too have schools that need rebuilt and that need more funding.
Certainly you can find a justification for attacking us. We have weapons of mass destruction. Just go inspect the former uranium enrichment plant near Piketon, Ohio. You will still find all sorts of radioactive waste on and around that site. Test our waters. Test our ground. Test our air. You will find an abundance of chemical and biological agents that could be used as weapons. We literally live among them.
After all, Appalachia is America’s third world. Terrorists are breeding everywhere. Where there is poverty there is unrest. Where there is poor education there is suspicion. Where there is neglect there is anger. As far as potential dangers go, Appalachia should be near the top of your list. Stomp out the bad before it turns thoroughly evil. Pre-emptively strike us now before it becomes too late. Do it before we make something else out of our fertilizer ingredients.
Since Appalachia is a highly religious area an attack could easily be explained as the fulfillment of prophecy. Many here would even agree with your need to attack us. In fact, we would probably help supply the troops.
Without any long-term energy strategy or alternative planning, once the oil is gone the US will become increasingly dependent on coal and wood. Appalachia has lots of that. Even today, the profitability of many US businesses would be threatened if Appalachia refused to supply them with electricity, coal, and other resources.
Can America afford to wait until a crisis is at hand before attacking Appalachia? The decision is yours. You do not even have to involve the United Nations since we are within US borders. You can go it alone.
The rest of the country will be fairly easy to convince about the need to attack us. The national news media will surely rise to your side. Prejudice against hillbillies already devalues our lives in comparison to those in the rest of the country, so our devastation and casualties would have to be nearly as high as in Iraq before anyone from outside Appalachia complains too loudly. Besides, people here have lived as second-class citizens for so long we now thoroughly expect to be treated as second-class citizens – and the rest of the nation expects to treat us that way. How else could you explain the relatively small outcry currently raised by our exceedingly high unemployment rates, poor education, high pollution, poor healthcare, high poverty, and poor leadership?
In fact, attacking us will probably help cement your re-election.
You might experience some local militia counterstrikes, but those will probably be disorganized and minor. After all, Appalachia lacks any central command, what with its being comprised of the parts of twelve states and only the whole of one state. West Virginia could be your focus. Find someone evil there to target, such as Jay Rockefeller.
He asked the FBI to investigate those forged documents you used to help justify your war against Iraq. How embarrassing that must have been: International Atomic Energy Agency Chief Mohamed ElBaradei addressed the UN and publicly humiliated you by showing your assertion that Iraq was trying to import uranium from Niger was based on crudely faked information. Someone should pay for such an embarrassment and who better than a Democrat who is a Rockefeller?
So Mr. President, you have all the elements you need: weapons of mass destruction, a nearly third world enemy, potential terrorists, someone to call evil, and an easy path to victory. Now all you have to do is attack. And please, do it soon. We need the reparations, better schools, better infrastructure, universal healthcare, and a fair share in the wealth of our own resources.
You also promised Iraq democracy. We could use that here as well.
Please, Mr. President, attack Appalachia next.
Mike Bryan firstname.lastname@example.org