August 13, 2008

A political conversation with a 7 year old

My darling, bright and talented son is almost 8. Sometimes I think he can't hear me at all, but then he comes up with questions that stun me and show me he really is listening to everything. (He must be choosing to ignore the sound of his mother's voice when she asks him to pick something up or get in the car. Go figure.)

So this was the conversation in the car yesterday after listening to a news brief on NPR.
Bug: Why did Russia invade Georgia?
Me: Georgia used to be a part of Russia and they were upset that Georgia wanted Russia out of the decision making for them. And they said Georgia had attacked some Russian military peace keeping forces. You can't really be sure of that though, sometimes the truth doesn't come out for a long time.
Bug: Are the US and Georgia allies?
Me: I am not sure, but I don't think we can officially be an ally to Georgia until they join NATO, which they were trying to do and Russia also didn't like.

Side conversation about NATO... Help!

Bug: Why would the US send troops to Georgia?
Me: the US has doesn't like it when a smaller country is attacked. I guess our leaders think it's their job to protect people, depending on their interests, and what they can do out of the deal.
Bug: So who were the bad guys in Iraq? Why are we over there?
Me: (taking a deep breath) Remember when the US was attacked by those terrorists and all of those people were killed? The US discovered that the bad guys were trained in Iraq and Afghanistan and that they were hurting other people over there, so they decided to try and stop them.
Bug: So we aren't fighting with Iraq, just the bad guys who live there and hurt people?
Me: right, kind of. There's more to it I think.
Bug: So that's why they are calling it The War on Terror.
Me: yep.
Bug: Mom, you missed your turn.
Me: Yes I did. I guess I got distracted. Thanks, my GPS kid.

I long for the days when I can just answer simply "This is a good conversation to have with Dad."

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