OIL? WHAT A LOVELY WAR?

The last time the Exocet Ensigns of the Argentine navy sought this sort of glory it was over the Falkland Islands where the English interrupted the medals ceremony.

The television crew then jumped to Buenos Aires, where thousands of angry mothers demonstrated against the admirals at the Malvides Memorial to the dead.

No such massive demonstrations against the oil war have taken place in the United States.

Despite the protest, it is understood in Argentina that it is the military where status and power reside. In Ireland the country does not bother to publicize its warrior generals, a celebration, in any case, that could be commemorated upon an air-mail stamp even smaller than a postal cover devoted to Irish cuisine.

The great Wellington himself only merits a dingy obelisk in Dublin, a questionable honor for a man who rejected any identification as an Irishman, pointing out that because one had been born in a stable did not make one a horse.

Instead of war memorials, Dublin is flooded with a poster dedicated to twelve Irish writers, legends of the tongue like James Joyce and Samuel Beckett. One of the dozen so honored was Sean O'Casey, author of the immortal The Plough and the Stars.

While I was in Ireland, O'Casey's play Juno and the Paycock was revived for a run to coincide with the Dublin Theatre Festival. In the closing act, Juno's son has been killed by his own mates in Ireland's never-ending death dance. Her neighbor's boy is dead, too. She turns to the audience.

" . . . Maybe I didn't feel sorry enough for Mrs. Tancred when her poor son was found as Johnny's been found now --because he was a Die-hard! Ah, why didn't I remember that then he wasn't a Die-hard or a Stater, but only a poor dead son! It's well I remember all that she said--an' it's my turn to say it now: What was the pain I suffered, Johnny, bringin' you into the world to carry you to your cradle, to the pains I'll suffer carryin' you out o' the world to bring you to your grave! Mother o' God, Mother o' God, have pity on us all! Blessed Virgin, where were you when me darlin' son was riddled with bullets, when me darlin' son was riddled with bullets? Sacred Heart o' Jesus, take away our hearts o' stone, and give us hearts o' flesh! Take away this murdherin' hate, an' give us Thine own eternal love! "

In the theatre, to my left, to my right, behind me, mothers wiped away tears from their eyes.

Juno's daughter Mary is pregnant and deserted by the father. And Juno herself has decided to leave her drunken, layabout husband. As the two women prepare to go, Mary worries out loud about bringing a child into the world without a pa.

"Come, Mary, an' we'll never come back here agen. Let your father furrage for himself now; I've done all I could an' it was all no use--he'll be hopeless till the end of his days. I've got a little room in me sisther's where we'll stop till your throuble is over, an' then we'll work together for the sake of the baby."

"My poor little child that'll have no father!"
"It'll have what's far betther--it'll have two mothers."
. . . And maybe Juno is right. It surely wasn't my wife who bought my son the lead soldiers.

Bush is not deploying Americans for moral purposes. We march for oil. Of course, this is the same reason Hussein marched.

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