Friday, January 26, 2007

A different perspective on the soldiers in Iraq

The issue of US soldiers in Iraq should be even hotter this year as the political climate tumbles and turns like a storm on the ocean. The marching has started and politicians are jumping in the ring to prepare for their presidential campaigns. But while the politicians and their constituents smash heads over their respective positions, there's something else going on that's rarely heard. What the soldiers in country are doing. Oh, we hear all about this convoy attached and that helicopter shot down and the like. But what about the other 98% of their time?

This is something that's already making the rounds on the 'Net. It needs to be emphasized as more than just an email chain letter, though. This picture and story are the reason why our soldiers are there. While the war administration has been quite fubar, the guys on the ground are trying to make things better.

You see, I grew up with military. I lived on Army and Air Force bases for the bulk of my youth. I've worked in and around the Department of Defense (DoD) for over 25 years. The politicians, generals and the rest of the big wigs have grandiose schemes and plans, but it's the grunts who catch the bullets. The people in the US need to see more of what the men & women in country are doing. Not just when they get shot. It would make a huge difference and might even lead to some actual changes that could actually mean something.

Now, I'm not advocating either side of the "War in Iraq" here. My political stance seems to be extremely rare in this world; I'm not a Democrat, Republican, Libertarian nor an Independent. My politics is based on common sense and, as Jefferson Smith put it, "a little bit of plain, ordinary, everyday kindness and a little looking out for the other fella, too." This does, at times, put me squarely outside the political and economic systems of this nation. But call me Don Quixote 'cause I'll keep tilting at these windmills until the very end.

What else is there to do?

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