Stalked by Suicide by Mike Hastie


They are all in the same casket called betrayal.
Just like over 50,000 from the Vietnam War.
In Vietnam, I experienced soldiers committing
suicide by gun, and homicides by gun.
I saw many destroy their lives by shooting
heroin, a slower death that eventually took
their lives when they returned from betrayal.
Everything is about deceit.
Everything is about lies.
I talked to an Iraq vet last week who was
involved in the early invasion in 2003.
He saw American soldiers do things that
would probably lead to suicide when they
came home.
This is all secret stuff,
stuff that the American people will stuff
away even if it gets out.
When the truth threatens one’s core beliefs,
there is an urgent need to deny its reality.
Denial always allows the casket to repeat

Mike Hastie
Army Medic Vietnam

Wealthy Are Richer

Photograph by Mike Hastie


1 Comment

  1. Bill Distler says:

    Hi Mike and all VFP UK Sisters and Brothers.

    There is no comment that could improve on what you wrote. Our homecoming was not the World War II hero reception that I had fooled myself into expecting. For two days in my Catholic school 8th grade class, the nuns read excerpts from Dr. Tom Dooley’s book on the kindness of Americans and the cruelty of the Communists in Laos. I was ready to go on the Crusade against those godless Atheist inhumans.

    We are lucky with our enemies; they are either godless crazies or too- much- god crazies, but they are always crazy. And don’t forget another ingredient in the hate formula they feed us; our enemies don’t care about their children. Or, to say this without sarcasm, we are always being taught to hate the enemy of the moment. Yes, we are betrayed.

    I always feel like any one of us has the ability to unlock the secret of stopping war, we just can’t find the magic words. That’s a delusion that I have to be aware of. I end up doing very small things, but they do make me feel better. And then I do another small thing, and another, and I feel even better. But when I think of stopping war with one sentence, I become paralyzed again. So I’m recommending the activism of small things. (I think I stole that from Arundhati Roy.) And don’t forget to take a break, go outside, and listen to the birds sing.
    Guillermo Distler, VFP Chater 111, Bellingham, Estado de Washington, Estados Unidos

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