What does “support the troops” mean to you?


“Supporting the troops” means withdrawing them – General William Odom (Nieman Watchdog)

One Soldier’s Story (Seattle Post-Intelligencer)

EXCERPTS: “An elderly reader named Barbara called up this month…”I don’t mean to bother you,” the Seattle resident began. “I don’t want people to forget.” Between the chronicles of Paris Hilton and the singing of Blake Lewis, she didn’t want anyone to forget the men and women who are scared to death, risking their necks in Iraq everyday. Meanwhile, back here at home, people are at the mall shopping or engrossed in reality TV shows that deflect attention from the reality of war. I don’t know what you can do, Barbara asked me — maybe remind people or something? How about telling a soldier’s story?”

“Staff Sgt. Darrell Griffin Jr. hails from Southern California. He joined the military and eventually was assigned to Fort Lewis. One reason Griffin, an Army staff sergeant, caught my eye is he defies the stereotype of soldiers as unthinking automatons with guns. The book he was reading when the Iraq war got in the way was about Søren Kierkegaard — the 19th-century Danish philosopher whose thoughts touch on the nature of faith, ethics and the feelings that individuals experience in the face of life choices. Heady stuff.

Another reason Griffin comes to mind is the introspective e-mails he wrote to his family and to journalists he met on the battlefield. Here’s one excerpt from his encounter with a young Iraqi mother: “I noticed the mother attempting to breast feed her little baby and yet the baby continued to cry. (The interpreter) … told me that the mother, because she was very frightened by our presence, was not able to breast feed her baby because the glands in the breast close up due to sympathetic responses to fear and stressful situations.” “My heart finally broke for the Iraqi people. I wanted to just sit down and cry while saying I’m so, so sorry for what we had done. I had the acute sense that we had failed these people.”

Pentagon underestimates war casualties, says veterans group (PoliticalAffairs.net)

Reservist fighting his fifth tour of duty; about to lose home, job (Miami Herald)

Kill anyone still alive”: American Special Ops in Somalia (Atlantic Free Press)

The War Inside (Washington Post)

The plight of veterans who aren’t receiving adequate mental health care, including one of the soldiers who captured Saddam Hussein.

U.S. use of Agent Orange in Vietnam 40 years ago still echo today, and continued use of biological warfare agents continues, and will affect generations to come (Slate)

Sifting the Sands of Time (LA Times)

This volunteer has excavated the remains of 20,000 people, most of them Germans and Russians, killed in fighting as Berlin collapsed toward defeat in the final days of April 1945…”In these bones you see what war is like. I know war now. I’ll tell you what it is. War is young men killing other young men they do not know on the orders of old men who know one another too well.”

Sprint cancels soldier’s cell phones (BetaNews)


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