Thursday, August 26

Jesus H Christ.

Over at the Eschaton, in a running thread, this was brought to my attention:
"....I am still trying to come to grips with the Dad in Florida who set the Marines van on fire and jumped in, after being informed his son was killed in Iraq. I can't believe how deep that one cut me. It is getting unbearable now!"

This started flashbacks regarding the pictures of the burning monk I had seen as a kid during the Vietnam war. I like to consider myself a resonably well informed person, but had not yet caught wind of this story. That's because it happened yesterday afternoon.
Associated Press

HOLLYWOOD, Fla. - Melida Arredondo said her husband knew what was coming as three uniformed Marines approached their front door.

And when they told him Wednesday afternoon that his Marine son, Lance Cpl. Alexander Arredondo, had been killed in combat in Iraq, police say Carlos Arredondo simply snapped.

Arredondo climbed into the Marine Corps van parked outside his home and set it ablaze, suffering severe burns.

"This is his scream that his child is dead. The war needs to stop," Melida Arredondo, who had rushed home from work when she heard the news, said Thursday on ABC's "Good Morning America."

The military had informed her husband that his 20-year-old son, who is Melida Arredondo's stepson, died Tuesday in Najaf, family members said.

The father then walked into the garage, picking up a propane tank, a can of gasoline and a lighting device, police Capt. Tony Rode said. He smashed the van's window, got inside and set it ablaze, despite attempts by the Marines to stop him, Rode said.

The Marines, reservists who are members of a military Casualty Assistance Calls Officer team, pulled Arredondo, 44, from the burning vehicle and extinguished the flames on him, police said. None of the Marines was injured but the van was gutted, Marines spokesman Maj. Scott Mack said.

"The father was in disbelief, same as any of us would be after hearing this kind of news," Rode said. "But then the father basically loses it. You can only imagine what this father was going through. He snapped, to say the least."

Unbelievable, no actually, quite believable. It is one thing to lose the fruit of your loins, a cherished son, for a Just, Noble, and Honorable cause. It is another thing entirely to lose someone in a war that has turned out to be optional, and shamelessly run on the cheap, and whose case was built on a pack of lies. I sincerely hope that Carlos Arredondo recovers his will to live. I cannot imagine the suffering, emotionally and physically, that he faces, but hope that his flesh will heal and his spirit mend.