Someone asked me the other day, why in the world do our soldiers fight. Well that’s a hard one. Let me give you three reasons why I think we fight. The politically correct thing to say would be that they fight for their country. And most do. But if you asked a COMBAT veteran or a Medal of Honor recipient why they did what they did, most will tell you that they were protecting their own lives and the lives of their buddies.
As most human endeavors, war breaks down to personal involvement. What happens directly to YOU and the ones around you? When there is nothing but chaos, the human mind cannot take it all in, then we retreat into what we can control in our immediate vicinity. We try to control OUR environment.
However, does that make the people in uniform today any less heroic? And I hate to use that word because it has been thrown around a little too much for my liking. But in my opinion, where the courage comes in is putting the uniform on in the first place. When you put on the uniform of the United States Armed Forces that is when you do so for God, Duty, Honor and Country. You know in your heart that placing on that uniform could cause you great bodily harm sometime in the future, but you do it anyway.
I had a medal of Honor Recipient tell me that he did what he had to do because he was too tired, too cold, too mad and just plain didn’t care anymore. Was he any less a hero? No, he was just telling the truth. He went above and beyond the call of duty because he overcame what he was feeling and did the job.
Another reason I believe we fight is that most Americans HATE a tyrant. They hate the governments that enslave their people and they feel guilty because there are people in the world that still survive under governments that are not humane. NO AMERICAN SOLDIER should rest, until every person on the planet is living under the light of freedom that God intended for us all. This is my belief.
And lastly, I think we just like to fight. Come on folks. This country has been at war since its inception. Fighting for freedom and helping the weak the world over so just admit it. WE LIKE TO FIGHT.
Wow, I can hear the howling now. Let me see… We are not the world’s policemen. We should not shed American blood if it does not involve our vital interests and so on and so on. I present to you that if someone is living without freedom, then that IS IN OUR VITAL INTEREST. It is in the vital interest of our spirits and souls. I also present to you, that to do nothing now with these countries simply means that we will have to deal with them in the future. (The Panama Canal comes to mind) Totalitarianism is abhorrent to the people of the United States and especially to the American fighting man or woman.
It seems like almost ever generation must prove itself in the fire of battle. Is this a curse of a blessing? I believe that it may be a blessing for it insures that all generations know the price of freedom. What a terrible price we must pay to keep evil away. But it must be done. As we lose many police and firefighters every year we will lose some of our finest in the field of battle. I am not cold hearted toward the loss of a single American. I have seen myself the agony and the heartbreak of war. I simply believe that we must fight now, when and where it will do the most good for our future and the future of our children.
Why the USA government fights is basically political but SHOULD BE the same as why the soldier fights. The only time in my memory that the government fought for something that the soldier did not agree with was in Vietnam. Even here I believe the principles involved were just, but that the government interfered in the way the war was being fought to the point that some soldiers and the American public simply gave up. When it was apparent that we were not going to fight to win then what was the use of dying?
The government of the United States must always insure that they give our fighting forces the people, training and equipment to do the job. Even more importantly, they must insure that what they are fighting for has the backing of the average G.I. Joe and the American people. And this goes back to my original premises. We fight to protect ourselves and to protect the weak and the innocent. Sounds a lot like police work doesn’t it?
Maybe we should just drop the political correctness and point out to the world that if you screw with our friends, or us or if you even screw with your own people to the level of atrocity, then you might be looking down the barrel of an M-16 with an angry Marine on the other end. Whether that Marine has a badge or the shoulder patch of the 4th Marines it will not make much difference to you. (We could even level a “law enforcement tax” on the United Nations.) We might even fight less if we pounded this point home to the world.
The blood of thousands of patriots runs through our veins. In a soldier, this blood burns to right wrongs and fix problems when all else fails. The time of communism, dictators, terrorist and despots are over. (Radical Muslims and terrorist take note) The light of freedom must shine on the world before the American soldier can rest. It’s a matter of honor.