The recent rising tensions with Iran have reaffirmed a belief of mine. I will always be an anti-war pacifist, but that doesn’t mean I can’t support my boyfriend’s choice to serve in the Marine Corps. I have to accept that he might be deployed to fight in inevitable conflicts involving the United States.
When it was reported Jan. 3 that President Donald Trump ordered an airstrike to kill the Iranian General Qassim Suleimani, I was with my boyfriend and his family, celebrating the holidays, as well as the rarity of my boyfriend being home. Since this only happens once every six months because of his career choice, everyone was in a happy mood before the news hit.
On Jan. 4, Trump took to Twitter to defend the airstrike, tweeting, “Let this serve as a WARNING that if Iran strikes any Americans, or American assets, we have targeted 52 Iranian sites ... those targets, and Iran itself, WILL BE HIT VERY FAST AND VERY HARD. The USA wants no more threats!”
Our president making reckless threats via Twitter isn’t a surprise. It seems like the other day that everyone on social media feared a nuclear war with North Korea because of his big powerful button brag in a tweet directed toward Kim Jong Un in January 2018. I was scared back then, but not to the degree of my fear of the most recent tensions with Iran.
The relationship with the Middle East and the U.S. has been notoriously complicated, and it’s common to hear that anyone who served in the military from the years 2001-2014 was deployed to either Iraq or Afghanistan.
I believe the tensions in the Middle East were influenced by our national interest in oil as a natural resource in countries like Iraq. The wars fought in the Middle East saw senseless lives lost on both sides. I can’t stand behind the actions that were taken by former President George W. Bush and his administration at the time of the conflicts.
Although I am steadfast in my opinion, I can’t put that blame on my boyfriend. I won’t be over the moon if he has to fight in a war with Iran, but according to the Defense Department personnel data from 2017, he’s merely one of the 1.3 million active-duty service members who are simply told what to do for the U.S. military.
Blaming people who serve this country for terrible actions ultimately caused by corrupt presidential administrations is pointing blame at the wrong individuals.
I can be anti-war without being anti-military. I can also choose to not support the conflict with Iran but still be supportive of my Marine boyfriend if he gets deployed.