Supporting the Troops Is Key
April 1, 2011
Back in the late '70s I went to Ramstein AB in Germany several times with the Air Force and got to meet some of the local people. One couple called the U.S. the policeman of the world. At that time I thought that was kind of a strong assessment, but after our recent actions in Libya, I now agree with them.
For the record, I do think that Moammar Gadhafi has been a terrorist for decades and needs to be removed from power if not more. I’m glad that the U.S. took a stance where it backed out of the lead role from the military action against Libya and insisted that the United Nations take over. We’re already fighting two wars and our military is definitely spread thin.
The military is doing an excellent job. It is the most advanced military in the world and deserves all that we can give it. The days of war bond rallies are long over, but we can show support in many ways.
When I joined the Air Force in 1974, being in the military was not a popular thing. The Vietnam conflict was winding down and everyone knows how unpopular that war was. A lot was blamed on the military even though it was run by the politicians back in Washington. Vietnam veterans never received the respect that they earned like their comrades do today.
Today I see young kids with goals to join the military. Their parents, family and community are behind them all the way. The military is marching in local parades, posting the colors at sports events among other things and rightfully getting applause from those watching.
Politicians are fighting for the veterans rights to ensure they get what they’ve earned while they’re deployed and when they get back home.
There are some anti-war protests from time to time, but not like in the 1960s and 70s. At these protests they say right out that the protest isn’t against our young men and women in the military, but the actual war itself. I have seen a few military funerals and the deceased are treated with the highest respect for giving the biggest sacrifice. Here in Alaska there hasn’t been any protest at these funerals. I would hate to see what would happen to the protesters if there was.
Our military personnel deserve all that we can give them to finish their mission while deployed and after they come home. We should also ensure their homes and families are protected and cared for while they are deployed.
They are doing it all for us, we should do the same for them.
—Dave retired from the U.S. Air Force in 1994. He now works part time as a salesman for a local auto parts supply to support his habit of photography, wild bird rehabilitation, viewing wildlife and exploring his hometown of Anchorage and Alaska. Check out his blog Around Anchorage.