The Aftermath of War  

waggypolly 71F
7449 posts
6/21/2006 1:56 am

Last Read:
4/15/2008 12:54 am

The Aftermath of War

Phonsavanh has two claims to fame. Around it is the Plain of Jars, covered in huge megalithic pots, which are quite worth a visit. The other, which I wasn’t prepared for, was that the Plain of Jars was the target of America’s “Secret War” thirty years ago. There are bomb craters everywhere. Cluster bomb casings and parts are put to a variety of uses ‒ such as raised planters (to stop the animals eating the veggies), stilts of houses, fence posts, fire fenders. But worse! Everywhere there are unexploded “bomblets.” Going to visit the Jars, cleared paths are clearly marked (funding from NZAid), but the local people just have to manage as best they can. There are already two generations who have grown up unaware that land can be safe to walk on.

I got to visit a dirt-poor hillside Hmong village, and also a Lao farmhouse. The Laos had a slightly better standard of living, eg they had pine floorboards rather than no floor. Nether places had chimneys. The fire was in the middle of the floor on the mud or a stone, with bits of old ordnance to prop up the pots.

The Lao family showed us their vegetable fields. They all looked really fertile and thriving, but we saw four unexploded bomblets which have recently been exposed by the rain. They can’t do anything other than dig carefully, keep on warning the children, and wait for the government agency to come and deal with them. They know there are many, many more under the surface.

Can anyone explain to me how it is that we humans let this sort of tragedy occur?

This is Polly, still Wagging.

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rm_FreeLove999 46F
16127 posts
6/21/2006 2:04 am

i presume you are referring to landmines?? angola has a similar (US supplied) problem. the US has still refused to sign the landmine non-proliferation treaty. this was one of princess diana's big causes. it is horrific how many generations must suffer these terrible weapons, how many children are maimed and families ripped apart while just trying to go about their business and eek out a living!

(seems like we are on the same page again, cos this past weekend, without knowing why, i was really thinking a lot about the landmines in angola... you must have been broadcasting "mental" landmines.

[blog freelove999]

waggypolly replies on 7/10/2006 2:54 am:
I think landmines are placed on/in the ground by soldiers on the ground. Cluster bombs are rocket-shaped bombs, about three metres long, filled with bomblets. These are small bombs, about the size of a hand grenade, filled with ball bearings. The bomb casings open as the bomb is dropped from the air and the bomblets are scattered all over the ground below. Sometimes the casings don't open, sometimes the bomblets don't go off for decades. Hence the Lao problems.

happyladychat 47F
3740 posts
6/21/2006 2:32 am

Polly, if civilisations never give up it's selfish and greedy nature, man-made tragedies like these will be never-ending......

Make it your challenge.... turn me ON!!

waggypolly replies on 7/10/2006 2:54 am:
You are so right.

ByteChaser2 52M

6/21/2006 7:44 am

cuz... we can't test for megalomania in the womb? Cuz executing a fetus that's destine to be a third world despot makes mothers of america foam at the mouth? Who knows...

waggypolly replies on 7/10/2006 2:56 am:
That would be a good test to develop. Would it gain someone a Nobel Prize? There's no need to execute the infant, we could just extract the megalomania.

redswallow777 48M
6810 posts
6/21/2006 11:13 am

I don't know Polly....I have never been able to figure out the logic of their use.....or the logic of my government not being willing to sign off on never using them.

waggypolly replies on 7/10/2006 2:57 am:
How about suggesting that militaries should go back after they've finished playing and clear up after themselves?

VATraveler1948 68M

6/23/2006 5:42 am

It's a mystery to me Polly, and it's a very sad legacy to leave behind in another country.

waggypolly replies on 7/10/2006 3:00 am:
It's a mystery to all right thinking folks I think.

interested13563 53M
2557 posts
6/23/2006 5:20 pm

Unexploded, burried bomblets, landmines, and agent orange
with dioxin: a shameful heritage that only exacerbates the
millions of directly inflicted deaths.... And it has been
done again and again... It is being done today....

waggypolly replies on 7/10/2006 3:00 am:
Yes, it is still being done . . . .

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