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I share our Founding Fathers’ belief that all men are “endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.” But I do not believe that liberty is held in equal regard by all men. Or that the United States of America can or should use force to remove the yoke of tyranny from the world’s populations. But I know that our military men and women protect us from our foreign enemies, and that they are a force for good in the world. One way or another, U.S. troops freed my father from slavery. For that, I will always be grateful. We owe our veterans a debt of gratitude and a duty of care. [Click here to read more about the above video.]

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  1. Thank you Robert. Oh before the inevitable posts about the war in Iraq. I served two tours there and spent time searching for mass graves Saddam had dug and lived on one of his palace complexes which had two lakes that served as mass graves, the large one held deserters insurrectionists and various dissidents the small one held the bodies of children that he and his sons had kidnapped raped and murdered. Since we took him from power the Iraqi people have no longer had to fear being kidnapped and tortured, killed, or having their children disappear in the night. So before you spout of about US troops having done no good over there do the research on the humanitarian work we have done , such as rebuilding water treatment plants re opening schools delivering food offering medical care through free clinics and re establishing basic freedoms and services. Sorry for the rant but it needed to be said.

    • great, but the United States military should be protecting America, not invading countries that didn’t attack us.

      • That might be true but had we not went then there ain’t a doubt in my mind we would have gone when the UN stepped in to stop the slaughter of the Kurds the next time Saddam started up. Hell even now we aren’t fighting Iraqi people we are fighting mostly Iranian Chechnyans (i have no idea how to pronounce them correctly let alone spell it soooo sorry bout that if it’s confusing.) And oddly a small number of Saudis Kuwaitis and Somalies.

      • Can we have a short philosophical discussion here?

        If you know of a crime being committed (In this case a government kidnapping, raping, torturing and murdering innocent people) and you have the power to stop that crime, and you do NOTHING, are you not complicit in that crime and equally as guilty as the criminal?

        If you are armed in public and you see a woman being forcibly raped and you say, as you walk away, “Not my wife or daughter or sister…” who is ultimately responsible for the fate of that woman?

        If a man enters an establishment armed and bent on mayhem and you slip out the nearest exit rather than confront him with you EDC, who is responsible for EVERY person he shoots after you left?

        It’s called morality. Sometimes you just have to step up to the plate. And each and every soldier, sailor, Airman and Marine who went to the Sandbox was a volunteer. All other arguments aside, they done a good thing and we should all be proud of them.

  2. I am an Army Vet. My Dad was in Korea. My Grandfather was in WWI. I have a nice color Certificate thanking and condolances when my Grandfather died from the White House. Too bad it was signed by President Johnson.

    The phrase Greatest Generation was/is used for those from WWII. But I would say the Greatest Generation is those who serve now and are still joining up. The Political climate being what it is.

    The anti’s just don’t understand that the 2nd Amendment protects the others. Who is willing to allow thier government to protect the other rights when they have no fear of the people? They would say well the fear comes at election time. Without the fear of possible armed revolt, they could just suspend elections.

    Our serving Warriors I am not worried about. They are not the ones who will do house to house. They will take the stand against tyranny, not join the tyrants.

    • WW II may or may not have been the “Greatest Generation”. A lot of them were drafted, after all. But they did serve and they did get the job done.

      What we need to realize and promote is that those who serve, and especially those who volunteer, are the greatest part of each generation. IMO.

  3. I stand proudly behind my brothers and sisters in uniform. Damn proud, and damn grateful too. I often regret my decision not to stay with the Army, but I will never regret having the opportunity.

  4. About 700 American World War II veterans die every day. They were our parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, brothers, sisters and friends. Without them and their accomplishments, none of us would be doing what we do today. The world would be very different and nowhere near as pleasant a place.

    There are less than a million left of the 16 million that served in all theaters. The average age of the survivors is 92. Soon, all of them will be gone.

    My father was one of the brave 16 million. He was called up in June, 1941, almost six months before Pearl Harbor. He died 45 years ago at the age of 54. He was not a sentimental man, but among the few personal items I found in a small strong box after his death were his military insignia and battle ribbons.

    His favorite TV show was “Combat.” He never spoke about his experiences in WW2 unless he was asked. It’s not that he was reluctant, just that he thought he had done his duty and that was that. The few stories he did tell me were about the camaraderie that he had with his brothers in arms.

    Deep down inside, he knew that he and the men and women who served with him had saved the world. At least I hope he knew.

    For sure, I knew. I still do. Maybe that’s just as important.

    • Amen. 3 members of my family were at Pearl Harbor on that day. They all survived. 1 was wounded at Pearl Harbor and then wounded again in the Solomons. He spent the rest of his life in and out of VA hospitals. He lived into the 60s and I never heard a word of complaint from him. All 3 of these men had a lifetime of war in a few short years.

      When they talked about the war later they never talked of the fighting and the violence. They always talked of their buddies and the humorous moments with them.

      This was the generation that had the most impact on me as I was coming up. They taught me more than duty and honor. They taught me to live as a man should.

      • My grand daddy on my dad’s side was 187th PIR he watched Tojo hanged and went on to teach with his brother (my great uncle) at the war college near Carlisle PA before being called on during Korea. My grandad on my mom’s side served on the Missouri during ww2 and Korea. My mom was commo after Vietnam. My dad served in Vietnam, Grenada, Panama, and Desert Storm 1. I served in OIF 5 and everyday I regret not being allowed to go back due to medical reasons.

    • And not only those who served were part of the greatest generation. My father was overweight his whole life and had issues with his heart. He turned 18 during the war. He tried every branch of the service and was rated 4F and rejected every time. It bothered him until the day he died that he did not have a chance to serve and as a result he did everything he could on the home front to support the war effort.

    • I’m of the next generations, my father and 4 of my uncles served in Vietnam, some of those in combat postings and my life has never been the same for what they related, I can’t imagine what it meant to their lives. I grew up knowing a couple of things: be good at combat, never acquiesce when anyone would limit your utility in combat, and learn all you can about combat.

      I’m in that age where I’m far too young for Vietnam, was too young for the first Gulf War, and I’m too old for GWII or Afghanistan. I’ve managed to spend a lifetime learning skills that aren’t useful out side of a war zone but none the less I’ve learned them. At some point the development of such skills can make one wonder what it’s all about; I realize that what they insisted on was that I learn to fight to win. I’ve likely put more time, effort and money into it than even they thought was right, but I’ve lived my whole life with the insistence that I learn to fight well.

      Given that I’m untested I always have to wonder, but I think I’ve done those old men proud with my readiness, and perhaps I’ve gone a little further than they had in mind.

  5. I have the privilege of serving in the Idaho National Guard. Enjoyed a complimentary lunch at one of my favorite places today and the waiter, while thanking me for my service, started to tear up. I saw WW2, Korea, and Vietnam vets all eating together. In the booth next to me, there was an older WW2 vet eating by himself in a booth. I was about to ask him if he wanted to sit with me and my kids when a group of people beat me to it. I love this state.

  6. Bless all who served, past present and future. And especially those who paid the ultimate price.

    US Army 91-95
    Rock of the Marne

    • Nothing is written except that which is within your heart. God has given everyone of us that which we need to create the future he desires us to have, a world of free will so that we may freely choose peace and to be with him, in all ways.
      March On Troopers, Sailors and Marines!

    Those that serve not for GLORY
    Serve for those who can’t and those that wont.
    Walk the talk needless of words
    Those who served, Understand
    Those who serve, Understand
    Those who will serve, will Understand
    Servicemen and women who have given their limbs and lives WE thank you for your sacrifice, WE pray for your courage and strength of will and hope some day will come when such is needed no more.
    Freedom isn’t FREE!

  8. I did not serve for glory.
    I did not serve for fame.
    I served for those who would not serve, and who would never know my name.
    I did not serve for “thank you”s,
    And certainly not for the pay.
    I served because it’s what was right, no matter what you say.
    I do not enjoy violence;
    I’ve had my fill of gore.
    If I were a praying man, I’d pray for no more war.
    I served for what I believe in,
    Though you may not give a fvck.
    But please, dear reader, do remember,
    Regarding war: it sucks.

  9. An old poem by an old soldier:

    Dusty old helmet, rusty old gun, they sit in the corner and wait

    Two souvenirs of the Second World War that have withstood the time, and the hate.

    Mute witness to a time of much trouble, where kill or be killed was the law

    Were these implements used with high honor? What was the glory they saw?

    Many times I’ve wanted to ask them, and now that we’re here all alone,

    Relics all three of a long ago war – Where has freedom gone?

    Freedom flies in your heart like an eagle. Let it soar with the winds high above

    Among the spirits of soldiers now sleeping, Guard it with care and love.

    I salute my old friends in the corner, I agree with all they have said

    And if the moment of truth comes tomorrow, I’ll be free, or by God, I’ll be dead!

    Audie Murphy. Yes, that Audie Murphy

  10. In memory of all the Cav troopers who have lost their lives.
    Fiddler’s Green.

    Halfway down the trail to Hell, In a shady meadow green Are the Souls of all dead troopers camped, Near a good old-time canteen. And this eternal resting place Is known as Fiddlers’ Green.

    Marching past, straight through to Hell The Infantry are seen. Accompanied by the Engineers, Artillery and Marines, For none but the shades of Cavalrymen Dismount at Fiddlers’ Green.

    Though some go curving down the trail To seek a warmer scene. No trooper ever gets to Hell Ere he’s emptied his canteen. And so rides back to drink again With friends at Fiddlers’ Green.

    And so when man and horse go down Beneath a saber keen, Or in a roaring charge of fierce melee You stop a bullet clean, And the hostiles come to get your scalp, Just empty your canteen, And put your pistol to your head And go to Fiddlers’ Green.

  11. Not to be sentimental, but since we’re sharing; a cadence from basic comes to mind. This has stuck with me since I dropped out of college and joined shortly after 9/11:

    Some Say Freedom is Free
    Well I tend to Disagree
    Some say freedom is won
    Through the Barrel of a Gun

    My Daddy Faught in Vietnam
    Went to War with the Viet Cong
    My Grand dad faught in World War two
    And Gave is Life for Me and You

    So tell me Why, why O Why..
    Do I keep Fightin On
    So tell me why why o why
    Do we Keep Marchin On

    It was a Dark and Dismal Day
    Two Planes Crashed into the World Trade
    Was a Dark and Dismal Day
    Two planes crashed into the world trade

    Tell me why, why o why
    Did those people have to die
    Tell me why, why o why
    Did those families have to cry?

    Was just after dawn
    A plane flew into the pentagon
    Was just after dawn
    A plane flew into the pentagon

    Tell me why, why o why
    Did those soldiers have to die
    Tell me why why o why
    Do these tears fill my eyes.

    Some say freedom is free
    Well I tend to disagree
    Some say freedom is won
    Through the barrel of a gun
    So I keep fightin on…

    • If I die in Viet Nam
      Mail my body home to mom
      In my casket I will ride
      Grounded to the inspection side
      Lay my hands across my chest
      Tell my mom I did my best
      Lay my hands across my lap
      Tell my girl I died of clap

    • An oldy but a goody. I used to sing it to my son as a nursery rhyme as normal ones didn’t cut it but this knocked him right out.

      He was just a rookie trooper and he surely shook with fright, He checked all his equipment and made sure his pack was tight; He had to sit and listen to those awful engines roar, “You ain’t gonna jump no more!” (CHORUS) Gory, gory, what a hell of a way to die, Gory, gory, what a hell of a way to die, Gory, gory, what a hell of a way to die, He ain’t gonna jump no more! “Is everybody happy?” cried the Sergeant looking up, Our Hero feebly answered “Yes,” and then they stood him up; He jumped into the icy blast, his static line unhooked, He ain’t gonna jump no more. (CHORUS) He counted long, he counted loud, he waited for the shock, He felt the wind, he felt the cold, he felt the awful drop, The silk from his reserves spilled out, and wrapped around his legs, He ain’t gonna jump no more. (CHORUS) The risers swung around his neck, connectors cracked his dome, Suspension lines were tied in knots around his skinny bones; The canopy became his shroud; he hurtled to the ground. He ain’t gonna jump no more. (CHORUS) The days he’d lived and loved and laughed kept running through his mind, He thought about the girl back home, the one he’d left behind; He thought about the medic corps, and wondered what they’d find, He ain’t gonna jump no more. (CHORUS) The ambulance was on the spot, the jeeps were running wild, The medics jumped and screamed with glee, they rolled their sleeves and smiled, For it had been a week or more since last a ‘Chute had failed, He ain’t gonna jump no more. (CHORUS) He hit the ground, the sound was “SPLAT”, his blood went spurting high; His comrades, then were heard to say “A hell of a way to die!” He lay there, rolling ’round in the welter of his gore, He ain’t gonna jump no more. (CHORUS) (slowly, solemnly; about half the speed of the other verses) There was blood upon the risers, there were brains upon the chute, Intestines were a-dangling from his paratroopers suit, He was a mess, they picked him up, and poured him from his boots, He ain’t gonna jump no more. Gory, gory, what a hell of a way to die, Gory, gory, what a hell of a way to die, Gory, gory, what a hell of a way to die, He ain’t gonna jump no more!

        • I remember it from Benning 🙂 2 cousins were Rangers, my best friend is 82nd Airborne. I never got my tab, but I recall the time rather fondly. Turns out I was destined to fly helos in the guard instead. I hold you guys in the highest regard. Much respect Jay.

        • I learned it in Airborne school and again in Air Assault I was just a Cav scout that liked schools I was tryin for selection till events beyond my control had me move home and transfer to a guard unit hopin to stay home too bad it didn’t work and I ended up goin right back over.

  12. USN, (Desert Storm) EW

    Little Brother, US Army… Air Assault/MP
    Mother, US Army…MP
    Uncle USN (Vietnam) AO
    Grandfather, (WW2) 10th Mountain, Italy Infantry
    Grandfather, (WW2) Merchant Marines/Battle of the Atlantic
    Aunt, US Army… Supply
    Two Cousins, Both USAF (late 90’s)
    Grandmother, WW2… WAC

  13. While I may not support the wars we are fighting, I will ALWAYS support the brave soldiers fighting them.

  14. The US GI is the only soldier that has never fought for rape nor wealth, he is the only soldier in history that has ever fought for the sole purpose liberating slaves and nations of slaves.
    The USGI has freed an estimated 45 million PPL while his foes have Murdered an estimated 100 million since 1913.
    But Obama is about to turn those numbers around

  15. I offer this, though it is long and thick, as my final tribute to veterans day.

    If we are mark’d to die, we are enow
    To do our country loss; and if to live,
    The fewer men, the greater share of honour.
    God’s will! I pray thee, wish not one man more.
    By Jove, I am not covetous for gold,
    Nor care I who doth feed upon my cost;
    It yearns me not if men my garments wear;
    Such outward things dwell not in my desires.
    But if it be a sin to covet honour,
    I am the most offending soul alive.
    No, faith, my coz, wish not a man from England.
    God’s peace! I would not lose so great an honour
    As one man more methinks would share from me
    For the best hope I have. O, do not wish one more!
    Rather proclaim it, Westmoreland, through my host,
    That he which hath no stomach to this fight,
    Let him depart; his passport shall be made,
    And crowns for convoy put into his purse;
    We would not die in that man’s company
    That fears his fellowship to die with us.
    This day is call’d the feast of Crispian.
    He that outlives this day, and comes safe home,
    Will stand a tip-toe when this day is nam’d,
    And rouse him at the name of Crispian.
    He that shall live this day, and see old age,
    Will yearly on the vigil feast his neighbours,
    And say “To-morrow is Saint Crispian.”
    Then will he strip his sleeve and show his scars,
    And say “These wounds I had on Crispian’s day.”
    Old men forget; yet all shall be forgot,
    But he’ll remember, with advantages,
    What feats he did that day. Then shall our names,
    Familiar in his mouth as household words-
    Harry the King, Bedford and Exeter,
    Warwick and Talbot, Salisbury and Gloucester-
    Be in their flowing cups freshly rememb’red.
    This story shall the good man teach his son;
    And Crispin Crispian shall ne’er go by,
    From this day to the ending of the world,
    But we in it shall be remembered-
    We few, we happy few, we band of brothers;
    For he to-day that sheds his blood with me
    Shall be my brother; be he ne’er so vile,
    This day shall gentle his condition;
    And gentlemen in England now-a-bed
    Shall think themselves accurs’d they were not here,
    And hold their manhoods cheap whiles any speaks
    That fought with us upon Saint Crispin’s day

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