I use a ‘Live TV’ toolbar to get a number of stations, worldwide, which brings up a player that stays up as I’m browsing or working. Most aren’t worth watching or are not in english, but some interest viewing can be found as well as a few english language News Programs or Networks, like the BBC and Al Jazeera.
Checking in on Al Jazeera English to see what they were reporting, most of the time like the BBC and a few others, much more than the U.S. MSM, free press and all, on Iraq and Afganistan and other regions, I caught the near ending of a Special Program series they are running called ‘Veterans’.
In a special four part series Al Jazeera looks at the fate of veterans from some of the world’s most savage or forgotten conflicts.
Whether they are conscripts, civilians, survivors – all have felt the shock of war and have been forced or chosen to fight to defend their country, their families or even an idea they do not fully comprehend
Some veterans have reintegrated into normal life with great ease and success but others have been unable to overcome the legacy of the conflict and say they have been abandoned by the countries they once served.
The first of these reports is on the Soviets in Afganistan, Remembering the Soviet ‘Vietnam’
, which I happened on, the last few minutes of.
More than 600,000 troops participated in the Soviet Union’s decade-long war in Afghanistan, the USSR’s largest military operation since the second world war.
Yet for many in modern Russia, and in other former Soviet countries, the conflict is one they would rather forget and is regarded with humiliation. Two years after the Soviets were forced to withdraw the USSR collapsed and many veterans returned to a changed country.
Al Jazeera found many of those who returned alive and are still disappointed by the lack of support they received and still bear the psychological scars from a conflict sometimes referred to as the USSR’s “Vietnam”.
They have this report on their YouTube Channel, and I bring both parts to you.
While you watch this, if you choose, place in your mind another country and a present conflict, actually Two, might even travel back in memory, for some, some 30 to 40 years ago as well!!
Veterans – Soviets in Afghanistan – March 31 – Pt 1
12 and a half minutes
Veterans – Soviets in Afghanistan – March 31 – Pt 2
11 and a half minutes
The next three, in the series, will be:
Few conflicts are imprinted in the public conscience as much as the Rwandan genocide of 1994.
In one of Africa’s bloodiest ever atrocities it is estimated as many as a million people from the country’s Tutsi minority and moderate Hutus people could have been killed in a period of only about 100 days.
Although now at peace Rwanda still has many wounds to heal and the reconciliation process has been painful for many veterans of the country’s often forgotten longer civil war.
Bosnia: The siege of Sarajevo
The Bosnian capital Sarajevo is a tranquil and picturesque place. However its name will forever be associated with bloodshed after the city was subjected to one of the longest sieges in modern history in 1992.
For 44 consecutive months, its citizens were forced to take up arms to defend themselves from attack by Serb forces – forces whose violent actions against Bosnian Muslims across the country gave rise to the term “ethnic cleansing”.
The destructive effects of war endure for many veterans and Al Jazeera met people who fought on both sides and a volleyball team who have put physical injuries aside to turn misfortune into triumph.
Argentina and the Malvinas
The Falkands war is a conflict many people in Argentina would like to forget but one that most cannot. Although the war in 1982 lasted just 74 days the effects have lasted a last time for the country’s veterans.
A total of 649 Argentinians died in the conflict and for those who survived they became synonymous with a humiliating defeat and an unpopular military junta that collapsed soon after. At least another 350 veterans have committed suicide in the 25 years since the war.
Al Jazeera visited survivors still effected by the war for who the Malvinas (as the Falklands are known) are still an inalienable part of Argentina.
Veterans, beginning with Soviets In Afghanistan, airs from Monday March 31 at the following times: Monday 0630, 1430GMT, Tuesdya 1130GMT, Wednesday 2030GMT, Thursday 0730GMT, Friday 0230, 1330GMT
I came in a few minutes before this was stated: “Veterans are the best peace keepers, they know the value of life!”
I’ll just say most are and most do!
The rest look like a continuation of this interesting series, but that first, and our own, should have been Remembered and Understood by the Neo-Cons, who’s interest were, and are, Wars Of Choice, sending others to battle for them.
In Wars Of Choice an ‘enemy’ didn’t exist, it’s created once invaded and those invaded fight back many times with regional help, more often than not, no one intercedes except the arms merchants, for there’s wealth in them there Wars, and Damn the Inhumanity!!
And I hope the Treatment of our returning Veterans, of Mutiple Tours, Stop Lossed, and some Returned to Theater with PTSD, more than once popped into the mind as you watched the above Video Reports, as well as what some of these Soviet Soldiers are now experiancing, reminds me of my ‘Nam Brothers!!