posted on Nov, 10 2013 @ 06:45 PM
Do you remember coming home?
To the warm embrace of your family?
To a parade down main street? Kissing the girls? Hugs from complete strangers? The war was over... Hitler dead and gone... His thousand year Reich put
in the dustbin of history in less than a decade...
Japan defeated. Pearl Harbour avenged.
You reclaimed the threads of your life, went back to college, met a pretty girl... Lived life as it was meant to be lived... Though some nights the
dreams and memories were all too vivid...
All too soon, your nation needed you again. A place called Korea. In a place called Chosin, you relearned the meaning of hell. Where you learned how
dangerous an ex ally can be as an enemy...
Do you remember coming home...?
All but forgotten... Ignored by those same girls, and those strangers didn't even know you.
But you picked up those threads again, and got on with life. Farming. Logging. Building a life. Trying to ignore those dreams that seem more frequent
then once they were...
You started a family. Wife. Kids. That white picket fence. All the while, memories and dreams would come calling...again, and again.
All too soon, the country called again. If Korea was a frozen Hell, what was Vietnam, but a wet, humid Hell? This time the enemy wasn't nearly as
clear cut. Sometimes it seemed that Charlie was less dangerous to you then the guys in the same uniform as yourself... REMF's with agendas that
seemed to not include winning a war...
But you, and your brothers in arms survived to come home again...
Bet there were moments when you wished you'd been forgotten again... I sometimes wonder what it was you guys, and gals, expected when you got home...
I can guess it wasn't what you got in all too many cases.
Spat upon by those girls? Shunned by those strangers? Even some of your loving family seemed to hate you...
Do you remember that?
I can't even begin to imagine the pain that caused you. All you were doing was serving your country. Like Dad did. Like Grandpa did. Like your
Uncles. Were you angry? Confused?
Probably all of those.
Yet you picked up your life, again, and got on with it. Just like you're supposed to, right?
Thirty years or so later...
The world trembled as two buildings came crashing to Earth... Victims of our inability to live with our neighbors in peace...
This time it was your sons and daughters that went off to a far, far place. You'd give your soul to take their place.
Afghanistan. Iraq. Where a nations soul has been torn asunder.
This time it wasn't my dad. This time it wasn't my Uncles. This time it was my sisters. This time it was my brother. My best friend.
My sisters served, and served well. My brother served and served well, though troubles came of it later...
I remember when his unit of the Oregon guard was ready to go... Politicians came and made brave speeches about service and courage, and a whole slew
of words that meant less than nothing to them...mere words, mere sound bites for the evening news.
My little brother, trying to be brave. Yet I could see the fear... I know you too well, my brother. I see the fear in the eyes of your compatriots,
Yet like generations before them, they went off to war.
...and like generations before them, all too many brought it back with them.
...and the brave, brave politicians who put them there can not, in too many cases, be bothered to even acknowledge them. Or help them... Or attempt to
make sure that another generation might not have to go to war.
The soldier has become the enemy. The face of all that all too many of you despise...
They're murderers, you say...
Babykillers, you say...
Puppets of the PTB, you say...
No, no they're not. They're our children. They represent the best and brightest of us.
Do we remember...?
I remember. Grandpa (WWI). Dad (WWII, Korea, Vietnam, the Cold War). My uncles (WWII, Korea, Vietnam, the Cold War). My sisters (the Cold War, a
terrorist attack.). My brother (Iraq).
I also remember the aftermath. I've heard the dreams. Nightmares, really. The pauses in conversations when a face no longer there flashes across your
memories. The long looks into the past on days like today. You remember only too well.
You don't see stark white crosses dotting the Normandy coast. Or a field in Arlington. Or a multitude of places all over the world... You see the
broken bodies, you hear the screams.
I can't change that. I can't remove the pain you feel, or fix the pain you've caused. All I can do is remember that it's up to me, and all of the
"me's" around me to make it so no one else has to remember those things.
I remember. I salute you. You served when your country called. Willingly. Or reluctantly. You stood to be counted when the time came.
Scorn them if you will, I can't stop you. I can, however, pity you. So self righteous in your anger towards these kids. Not realizing, or caring
either, that they have nothing to do with the decision making that put them in those far off places. That particular mantle belongs to us. We put them
there. We keep them there. We put the politicians whose platitudes we so despise, into those offices that sent our own children to war.
We are the one's who allow agenda's to kill our kids. ...and put our kids into positions where they kill other peoples kids.
Us. You. Me. No one else did this. No one. Until we make our selves bring the kids home, it's going to continue.
Continue to play your blame game if you must... Just make sure you save some of that blame for yourselves.