Supporting the Troops Dr. Michael Ford 22 August 2005 There has been something bothering me for a long time, and I have decided to get it off my chest. For years I have been fed up with those yahoos who say that while they do not support the war they support our troops. Iíve got news for you. It is not possible to completely separate the wars and the warriors. The first reason is the obvious. Each war is somehow characterized and defined by the men that fight it. Each generationís suffering and sacrifice is unique to them. Their experiences, and their familyís stories have a nobility of its own. People who say they are for the troops but not the war have no commitment to an outcome that honors that noble service to the Nation performed by them. The second reason has to do with the character of how armies are constructed in our country. We are not a nation that hires mercenaries to fight its battles. We are a people who send its sons to defend the homeland so that it will still exist for their unborn sons and daughters. Even those of us who become the so-called professionals are citizen soldiers, dedicated to the defense of America because behind us are our wives and children upon whom our skill in waging war depends. The third reason has to do with who decides how our wars will be fought. The plans come from the citizen soldiers who have dedicated their lives to studying war in order to make sure this land will not fall under foreign domination. They too are sons, whose own families saw them go off to defend freedom. For them the disciplined study of past battles, the walking of ancient battlefields, the study of the past philosophers and generals of war do not come from some bloodthirsty fascination with murder and mayhem. The wargaming of potential battlefields and scenarios does not occur because there is an eagerness for the killing to start. It happens so that when war does come they will be able to function as efficiently as possible, fully defeat the enemy, and bring home alive as many of our own as we may. It is not uncommon for the dedicated patriots who plan the battles to see their own sons at the front risking all for God and country. They are the troops too!
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