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Opinions of Tuesday, 27 March 2018

Columnist: Mercy Aba Blankson

Us Military agreement: If I don't know death, don't I look at sleep?

Now because ideas do not come to me fully formed and only becomes clearer as I work on them, I would like to issue an apology. I apologize for the intensity of the effect this write up might cause except for the primary aim of making a positive impact with respect to making the US military troops return before they arrive in Ghana.

As soon as I heard about US military troops who might be joining us here in Ghana for whatever reason and even further read that they would be using our frequency spectrum the first thought I couldn’t help but photograph was a waiting coup d’état. The first thing that came to my mind was a little history about June 4th issue that happened in Ghana some years ago where soldiers gained control of the Ghana Broadcasting Corporation which I clearly recall learning in school.

Listen, I won’t talk much here because I initially did not want to say anything about it. But now that I have been psychologically and emotionally resuscitated from a heart breaking writer’s block during which I missed opportunities to express my opinion on this same topic on campus TV’s Campus Voice, I might as well talk and do it like I am the only Ghanaian the situation will affect.

When we take a look at the continents and the natural disasters they have to deal with, we would observe that Antarctica is to extreme temperature, Asia is to tsunami, Europe could be linked to earthquakes though the stats available do not support this assertion, while South and North America is to hurricanes and flooding respectively but the right here in Africa our natural disaster have become our unfeeling politicians and some sycophant citizens who unfortunately represent the opposite of what we actually want as Ghanaians. [Remember that I have already apologized for this in the first paragraph].

In 1941, the US established a military base in an island in Puerto Rico called Vieque. The base was used as training ground for testing all sorts of bombs and as human as the citizens were, they protested against this but the government refused to listen. Unfortunately one day in 1999, two 500 pound bombs were dropped too close to a security post tearing one citizen into pieces and leaving four others injured. This raised rage among the citizen and it intensified their protest against the presence of the military on their soil.

It took five years of protests to be able to finally drive US forces away. The soldiers left but they also left behind a high rate of cancer due to the numerous bomb testing. Many Vieques citizens have to spend most of their lives on the hospital bed fighting hopelessly against strange diseases.

I don’t understand why people have just refused to remember that when the civil war in Liberia started US soldiers were already in the country, but what did they do to ensure the safety of citizens?

Ah well, maybe it could be because foreign forces cannot unilaterally intervene in the sovereign matters of another state until it has been invited by the latter but I can't see a fellow human in trouble and wait for him or her to ask for help Before I offer one.

These people watched their own colony burn to ashes. Maybe I can’t accuse them of selfishly evacuating themselves to safety and leaving the Africans to clothe themselves in bloody short and long sleeves of maiming because every military mission comes with a mandate. It is important for me to understand the mandate of a mission before making comments on their activities. Hmmmm.

Even in 1998 the exact time when I was born, about 200 Kenyans and Tanzanians were killed because terrorist decided to attack US installations with over 4,000 persons injured while only 12 of the US lives was lost. Ah, if I do not know death, don’t I know sleep?

I want to go to heaven and I might have to die first but I do not want to be killed by them, on my own land? Never! I spit on it. Piaa!
Maybe I should congratulate the NPP for at least sending the argument to parliament as it was never done by the NDC in a similar case in 2015 and also in the GITMO 2 and just maybe even go ahead to also applaud the defense minister for his tenacity to ensure that the due processes is followed but this whole process is like showing a kid the way to a confectionary shop and telling him or her that uncontrolled sugar is dangerous to one’s health. What does the child care? All he or she wants in that instance is the short pleasure of enjoying a delicious candy without a care for sugar causing diseases.

I totally agree with Papa J [former president Jerry John Rawlings and former military leader] when he expressed concern about this issue that Ghanaians may love Americans but not to the extent of living with the foreign troops. Maybe I am making a fuss about all of this, you may think that I am paranoid, I may be at the age of twenty, I might be too young to talk about this; “when did this one also come;” that is what they will say but that gives me more reason to talk because those are what make me vulnerable to the soon to come self-imposed suicide.

Last time I checked the meaning of the word “republic” in the Cambridge dictionary my dad bought for me when I was in primary six, I was told something that meant that a country that was not ruled by monarchy but by a president and a group of people who represented the citizens at the national level. What are the people saying? The leaders have obviously heard the cries of the people to let the US military troops go before they come. Are we being effectively represented by parliament? We are Ghanaians and a lot as explained above have happened to other African countries as a result of something similar to what we might be doing to ourselves soon. If the leaders do not know death as it is obvious that they have not died before for how can they just go blind to what our sister countries have suffered and say that at least they do not know sleep?

For the safety of Annie Joy who asked me to write something about this, my family and all Ghanaians we tell the US military troop to go before the even come! Forget about the benefit we will derive from them. You talk of benefits at the expense of the uncertainty of our lives and security? We are about to die and you are telling me to have a look at my teeth? Come on! I don’t know a lot including death, but if I do not know death at least I cannot deny the fact that I know sleep!

Aba Radical

The Photographer of Thoughts
FB: Mercy Aba Blankson

Twitter: @aba radical


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