web counter Media Lies: This is America

Thursday, November 25, 2004

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This is America

Blackfive reports on a reporter's reaction to our troops in Iraq. This is nothing new. It's the way we were in Europe during World War II. It's the way we were in Vietnam, although few want to admit it. It's the way we've been in every war we've fought for some time now. As the Marines say, "No greater friend, no worse enemy".
While surfing through websites for information on my old unit, the 101st Airborne Division, I ran across a quote by a reporter, who was embedded with the 101st in Iraq during the invasion. In his tribute to the young troopers he served beside, he marveled at how they could fight Iraqi forces so ferociously through the night, then spend their days handing out food and medicine to Iraqi civilians. The reporter observed that Stephen Ambrose, historian and author of “Band of Brothers,” another tribute to the Screaming Eagles, but those of an earlier war, had this to say about American troops,
“"When soldiers from any other army, even our allies, entered a town, the people hid in the cellars. When Americans came in, even into German towns, it meant smiles, chocolate bars and C-rations.”
The reporter followed that quote with two sentences of his own which I find truly moving and profoundly insightful,
“Ours has always been an army like no other, because our soldiers reflect a society unlike any other. They are pitiless when confronted by armed enemy fighters and yet full of compassion for civilians and even defeated enemies.”
Those words should be chiseled into granite on a prominently displayed memorial somewhere, because they speak a great truth, not just about our fighting men and women, but also of the nation and society that molded them.
This is America.

You should be proud.