Remembrance Day 2008:
I am a veteran. US Army Medic Serial. The teaching method was simple but effective. During Basic Training, I marched in single file int...
I am a veteran. US Army Medic Serial
The teaching method was simple but effective. During Basic Training, I marched in single file into a small bunker ‘gas chamber’. The gas is turned on and you are ordered to put on your gas mask. Then you are told to take the mask off and recite your enlistment serial number. Amazingly, almost a zero failure rate among 100 trainees
Every November 11 we are asked to publicly remember our brothers and sisters who gave their lives, so we could live ours in freedom. For most, that memory, like the one during basic training, has been embedded into our minds by trauma, fraternity, and prid
Today, at the Corozal Cemetery, three Ambassadors will stand shoulder to shoulder out of respect for the American, British, and Canadian soldiers who have died fighting many battles on many continents
These diplomats know that war is a failure, not an extension of diplomacy. They know that those who are our enemies today, will be our ‘most favored nation’ trading partners, tomorrow. And, they know that the most devastating ‘weapon of mass destruction’ is an arrogant, immoral, mendacious, and failed foreign policy
But you don’t have to be a diplomat to recognize the futility of war. That armed conflict is a blunt sword that kills more innocents than combatants. That it’s old men who send off young men and women to die, for the most specious of reasons.
So, as we honor our dead brothers and sisters under the helmet, let’s honor the living, as well
Let’s support the VFW, (Veterans of Foreign Wars) The American Legion, The Royal British and Royal Canadian Legions and politicians to ensure that our returning vets get the benefits they were promised.
Let’s improve medical services and eliminate the extra charges. Where physicians and hospitals stole money for almost a decade from the VA through Tricare in Panama and Puerto Rico, where corruption was judged the worst by government oversight probers, let’s get that money back, name the culprits, and send them off to jail
Honor the dead by helping the living through these simple measures: 1. Reduce VA backlog of pending claims; 2. Ensure VA’s disability compensation program is fully funded and preserved in its current form; 3. Oppose any change to current definitions of “line of duty” or “programs for disability and survivors benefits;” 4. Extend the GI Bill s.22 to vets who enlisted before 2001; 5. Ensure that active-duty, National Guard and Reserve troops receive increased pay, affordable health care, and adequate housing for them and their familie
The VFW is a force to be reckoned with. It’s a service organization that includes more than 70,000 Afghanistan and Iraqi war veterans among the group’s 2.3 million members. The above actions are what vets expect from their nation, and it is what the millions of VFW members and its Auxiliaries demand from government
Heed their call.
Remember, on this Veterans Day/Day of Remembrance, we owe our vets more than poppies and pageantry.
We owe them our word. And, keeping that word is our sacred duty.
So today, take time to honor the dead and figure out what you can do to help the living.