Support the troops: Now, more than ever
Some Americans are watching the Democrats on Capitol Hill to see what they propose to do over the next two years. Former Reagan White House staffer, Peggy Noonan, comments: “As for Democrats, they have a unique opportunity, one they havent had in 14 years, to redefine for the public what their party is. It is their chance to change their public label. Now, with the cameras of the country trained on Capitol Hill, they can throw off the old baggage of the 1960s and 70s and erase the cartoon version of their party, which is culturally radical, weak in its defense of America, profligate, McGovernite, bitterly devoted to the demands of its groups as opposed to the needs of America.”
But what does Peggy Noonan mean when she mentions “the needs of America?” The U.S. Constitution is a good place to start. In its very first paragraph, the Preamble, our Constitution speaks of the need “to provide for the common defense.” So, unless Speaker of the House, Nancy Pelosi, is clueless in San Francisco, she will try to lead her Democrat colleagues in the House to match the success of the Bush Administration in the prevention of another 9/11 attack here at home, and provide the funding needed to keep the Islamic fascists at bay, overseas, rather than having to fight them over here.
Or, she can pretend the Islamic fascists are just misunderstood religious zealots who suffer from a lack of indoor plumbing and would leave us alone if we would leave them alone. News flash: Other than incinerating 76 religious zealots (including 21 children), near Waco, Bill Clinton declined that approach, and we were still attacked dozens of times prior to 9/11.
But will the recent shift in power in Congress cause our troops to think the American electorate is not appreciative of their efforts to provide for the common defense? Let’s hope that is not the case because the outcome of the November, 2006, election was, for the most part, about the failure of the Republican majority to do what they were sent to Washington to do. Namely, not behave like profligate Democrats and, post-9/11; reduce the non-defense costs of government. The GOP paid the price for failing at both.
Fortunately, there are ways to reassure our troops that the problem is over here with us and not over there with them. Cards and letters are the traditional means; however, many of our troops have Internet access, to include e-mail. They all have snail-mail and, via the U.S. Postal Service, it is possible to send a large, Priority Mail box for just $8.10. Do not let some untrained postal clerk tell you otherwise.
Go to: www.anysoldier.com (covers all branches) and select your trooper(s). He or she will tell you what they need. We adopted an Army Nurse, sending to her Combat Support Hospital in the Sunni Triangle whatever small items she said she needed. She was great about e-mailing her thanks and news of her unit.
Stationed inside one of the two Iraqi provinces where there is actual fighting, she e-mailed how rare it was for a GI to be wounded or killed. Iraqis wounded by Iraqis or by foreign terrorists made up almost all of the hospital’s patient population. Her reports of maimed children moved Wonder Wife to round up dozens of soft toys and mail off Priority Mail boxes full of them.
But there is a danger in coming in direct communications with our troops in the field. In our experience (that Army Nurse is just one of our seven “adoptees”), what they will tell you about their day-to-day activities will be at major variance with what you will see or hear reported by the Sinistra Media on: ABC, CBS, NBC, MSNBC, CNN and NPR.
Psychologists call that: Cognitive Dissonance, meaning your brain must try to hold two competing thoughts at same time. But please don’t let Cognitive Dissonance stop you from expressing your appreciation to our brave men and women.
Retired Army officer and syndicated columnist, William Hamilton, was named a Distinguished Graduate of the U.S. Naval War College and is a former Research Fellow at the U.S. Army War College. Writing as William Penn, he is the co-author of two novels about terrorist attacks against the United States.
©2006. William Hamilton.