Sunday, October 9, 2011

Support the Troops?

Upon the 10th Anniversary of the U.S. engagement in Afghanistan, Emily Badger posted an excellent article.  A good writer, she makes the case that while the public feels the military's pain, they don't (or won't) share it. A disturbing observation is that "among people who feel the military has made more sacrifices than the public, 26 percent described this as 'unfair.' But 70 percent felt the added burden was 'just part of being in the military.'"

As Admiral Mike Mullen, recently retired Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said this past May, "I fear they do not know us."

I fear the same. After 28 years of service in the United States Navy, despite all the polls that say the military is the most respected institution in the United States, almost none of the people I deal with have any real understanding of what they have asked the military to do or what they have asked the families of those military personnel to endure.

"Well, you volunteered," is a common response.

"Well," I reply, "you have decided that the United States needs a military and have decided to use it. These are people, not hammers that can thrown away when they wear out or break."

If you truly support our troops, then you must know what you have asked them to do and decide if that is really what you want. I guess it is easy to just not pay attention.

Circle Don on Google+