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Life During Wartime

by JANINE DI GIOVANNI | July 22, 2012

WHAT does it feel like when a war begins? When does life as you know it implode? How do you know when it is time to pack up your home and your family and leave your country? Or if you decide not to, why?

For ordinary people, war starts with a jolt: one day you are busy with dentist appointments or arranging ballet lessons for your daughter, and then the curtain drops. One moment the daily routine grinds on; A.T.M.’s work and cellphones function. Then, suddenly, everything stops.

Barricades go up. Soldiers are recruited and neighbors work to form their own defense. Ministers are assassinated and the country falls into chaos. Fathers disappear. The banks close and money and culture and life as people knew it vanishes. In Damascus, this moment has come.

I spent nearly two weeks in Syria earlier this month; I was privileged — and lucky — to get a visa because there is a near-total media blackout. The fear that rises with civil war was palpable. Car bombs exploded in the streets; there was a shootout in a television station. The week after I was in Damascus, the Red Cross declared the 17-month uprising a civil war, which means that international human rights law applies throughout the country. More essentially it means that Syrians can’t any longer deny, as some did, that their country is at war and that the life they’ve lived is rapidly coming to an end.

C o n t i n u e

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Why is this story pinned on DP?

This is a typical CIA-media war propaganda story. I missed the memo that said NY Times is now a credible source for critical thinkers. I wish all links to CIA-media sources were banned on this site.



but perhaps it is a valid account of first-hand reporting in the field. As an opinion piece, we cannot necessarily discount what could be happening even if we may understand the broader cause of strife. If anything, lets postulate about the motivations behind the editorial choice rather than trash whatever merits the article may have. Honestly, I was reading the article from the vantage point of how our domestic situation could change rather quickly with out of work college grads playing games like modern warfare and black ops oblivious to the realities of pain, grief and suffering and the falsehood of the Keynesian dream of war and prosperity.

NYT is beating the war drums by

Pulling on our heartstrings. No doubt this is a tragedy beyond explanation. But since the 'rebels' are almost entirely the product of foreign intervention by US, UK & Israeli intelligence (an oxymoron if there ever was one) agencies, we the people should take with a grain of salt the propaganda we are fed by the MSM. Remember the WMDs in Iraq? The images of human slaughter in Libya but no mass graves? AlQaida and the Taliban cells in Af/Pak? More war propaganda?


very 1-sided version...

I've talked to many people in #Syria over the past several months. The US/UK/EU is engineering this fake revolution. Assad isn't even really a bad guy.... The overwhelming majority of the violence is being perpetrated by "rebels" funded by western governments and then being blamed on the "regime"... If #Syrians still controlled their media, you'd know this truth, but every network has been taken over by "rebels" and western forces.

Don't accept the propaganda at face value. Your Government Is Lying To You!

At their inceptions, the #Liberty, #OccupyWallStreet and #TeaParty movements all had the same basic goal... What happened?

David Byrne knows

Life During Wartime

Heard of a van that is loaded with weapons,
Packed up and ready to go
Heard of some grave sites, out by the highway,
A place where nobody knows
The sound of gunfire, off in the distance,
I’m getting used to it now
Lived in a brownstore, lived in the ghetto,
I’ve lived all over this town

This ain’t no party, this ain’t no disco,
This ain’t no fooling around
No time for dancing, or lovey dovey,
I ain’t got time for that now

Transmit the message, to the receiver,
Hope for an answer some day
I got three passports, a couple of visas,
You don’t even know my real name
High on a hillside, the trucks are loading,
Everything’s ready to roll
I sleep in the daytime, I work in the nightime,
I might not ever get home

This ain’t no party, this ain’t no disco,
This ain’t no fooling around
This ain’t no mudd club, or c. b. g. b.,
I ain’t got time for that now

Heard about houston? heard about detroit?
Heard about pittsburgh, p. a.?
You oughta know not to stand by the window
Somebody might see you up there
I got some groceries, some peant butter,
To last a couple of days
But I ain’t got no speakers, ain’t got no
Heaphones, ain’t got no records to play

Why stay in college? why go to night school?
Gonna be different this time
Can’t write a letter, can’t send a postcard,
I can’t write nothing at all
This ain’t no party, this ain’t no disco,
This ain’t no fooling around
I’d like to kiss you, I’d love you hold you
I ain’t got no time for that now

Trouble in transit, got through the roadblock,
We blended with the crowd
We got computer, we’re tapping pohne lines,
I know that ain’t allowed
We dress like students, we dress like housewives,
Or in a suit and a tie
I changed my hairstyle, so many times now,
I don’t know what I look like!
You make me shiver, I feel so tender,
We make a pretty good team
Don’t get exhausted, I’ll do some driving,
You ought to get some sleep
Get you instructions, follow directions,
Then you should change your address
Maybe tomorrow, maybe the next day,
Whatever you think is best
Burned all my notebooks, what good are
Notebooks? they won’t help me survive
My chest is aching, burns like a furnace,
The burning keeps me alive
Try to stay healthy, physical fitness,
Don’t want to catch no disease
Try to be careful, don’t take no chances,
You better watch what you say


Conscience does not exist if not exercised

"No matter how cynical you get, it's impossible to keep up!
---Lily Tomlin

Starting in the late 70's I was a huge fan and saw many of their

Starting in the late 70's I was a huge fan and saw many of their shows, knew all the words but never heard them till your post. 50 years old and it took this long to pay attention. just watched a vid of this live and I remember the awkward dance moves. Back then they were cool/odd. Today when i watch it, it's an obvious distraction from the words, like shiny lipstick ladies on tv reading the "news", like when the "programming" say's, "NOW THIS"....
I will have to email David Byrne and the talking heads my confession of fan worship and a belated thank you for the early warning.
Just watched Psycho Killer, gives me the shivers!

Thanks for posting this SemperFi!

I turned up the speakers and sang along!! I too never took the time to look up the words of that song..WOW.Fits right in on this story Thanks again..Im going to listen to it one more time with the volume up even a bit more..because This aint no party this aint no disco this aint no fooling around!

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Number 2's picture

When that song came out, I was in high school

I thought it was funny, because of the funny tempo, and the way David Byrne sings it. I didn't much pay attention to the lyrics, except for the chorus:

This ain’t no party, this ain’t no disco,
This ain’t no fooling around

Over time, as the lyrics have sunk in, I no longer find it funny. It is quite chilling to imagine that world that Byrne has created. But whoever he's singing about, they're definitely part of the opposition.

That'll be us, guys, when war comes home to roost.

Truly horrible and depressing...

Those people do NOT deserve to go through all that - NO ONE does!! My heart goes out to all of them


So sad and so very scary! I sure hope they don't add our soldiers to the death toll. Feel so sorry for the people there.