HBO’s documentary on a combat surgical hospital in Iraq, “Baghdad ER,” aired tonight. See it if you can. It’s tough to watch from the bubble of safety in which most of us live because it involves viewing people who have suffered awful, often fatal injuries. On the other hand, the work of the medical people and their commitment to all those who need their help is inspiring to see.
One quote of many that stood out, from Major Martin Harnish, a surgeon:
“This war and the number of lives it’s affecting is just unbelievable. I have to think the people in this country [Iraq] are in a better place for it, or will be in a better for it. I have to believe that, because otherwise this is just sheer madness.”
Quotes like that and the film’s occasional unfiltered glance at the terrible reality that lies behind the casualty statistics is sure to provoke some in the Fox News sphere to denounce it as anti-war propaganda. I prefer to think of it as a glimpse at the price we’re all paying, some way or another, for the war.