While perusing my morning paper (online, of course; who pays for this stuff nowadays? How many would PAY to read BlackFive every morning?) I came across a series of stories in the Rocky Mountain News about current enlistments.
They have interviewed (Here, Here, Here, and Here) people impacted by the war, both those who have served and their families. They've also interviewed a protester who's son has severe PTSD. Of note is a comment by the father of a Marine who was killed:
Talk of surrender disgusts me. People who would just walk away and surrender would make my contribution worth nothing, and that's my son's life. I do believe we've got to win there. Not only for all the lives lost and the money spent. We've got to win there for the future, for my sons and my grandchildren. We have to win for them. Not just for Mark.
Contrast this to the comment by the anti-war mother:
But he had been lied to: He was told they were going to set up aid stations in the town of Ramadi, they were going to help the Iraqis because they needed medicine and medical care. But they didn't have enough supplies to help the people of Ramadi. His first assignment was to treat prisoners after their interrogation, which means torture.
My take is that the paper most likely went out looking for less-enthusiastic responses to current conditions- and I say that because of the following comment:
Now, five years after the war began, with the conflict more unpopular than ever, I am again surprised by the numbers. - Tina Griego
She went to the local MEPS station to interview new recruits and see what's up with their commitment in a time of war. I've known Tina for some time, and have met with her and talked with her on a number of occasions. I was surprised by this comment by her- especially the fact that the 'more unpopular than ever' one, as that is completely inaccurate (the Surge has been attributed to raising numbers for months).
Folks, we are just on the cusp of what is coming down to be one ugly, hateful, disgusting period of American life. As I have posited on a number of occasions here in the past, things are going to get stupid ugly in the next 8 months.
Normally, the RMN can run some awesome stories about the troops, and they've won Pulitzer's for that work, too. But this set, if you look at it from a more pessimistic view, gives me great pause about the future...
Oh, and write Tina at [email protected] (also posted at the end of the story) and tell her why people enlist. Why YOU enlisted. People have options... and BE NICE, please!
(photo above via RMN)