By Richard Ray:
Happy Veterans Day. 9/11 has totally ensured that America respectfully embraces and honors the commitment of its men and women that have served in the armed services. That honor and respect has not always been given to those in the armed services and as many men can attest after serving in the vastly unpopular Vietnam War, they returned to this country, often vilified and left to fend for themselves with little thanks and appreciation for their service.
That is no longer the present sentiment in the United States. Servicemen and women are acknowledged for the sacrifices and honored for their dedication. Presently there are approximately 1.4 million men and women enlisted in the armed forces along with over 800,000 additional National Guard and Reservists.
The men and women in the armed services protect the freedoms that we take for granted both domestically as well as throughout the world. They put their lives in harms way, and should be accorded all of the accolades available to acknowledge sacrifice and dedication of those that selflessly risk their lives to protect and ensure out freedom and safety.
I am a big proponent of acknowledging the commitment of our servicemen and women. However, I find that America has been blinded by its reverence for the men and women and who have served and we are failing to question our politician’s decisions to essentially have us in continuous warfare for the last 15 years.
In no way am I trying to denigrate or diminish the service of the men and women in our armed forces. In fact I think that their sacrifices are being wrongly used in political propaganda to have people ignore the decisions of those that are continually putting them in harm’s way, including by this current president and others in wrongly using our military and Flag as pawns related to peaceful protests against social injustice… Not the Military or Flag… during NFL games.
We all knew and expected that America was going to have a strong retaliatory reaction to the attacks from 9/11. The leader of Al-Qaeda, Osama Bin Laden was a Saudi Arabian from a wealthy family. 15 of the 19 9/11 hijackers were Saudi Nationals, 2 were from the United Arab Emirates, 1 was from Lebanon, and the other was from Egypt. 15 of 19 were Saudis as well as Al-Qaeda’s leader, yet a well documented relationship with former President Bush and his son and then current President Bush, left us seeking no direct retribution from Saudi Arabia.
False information and outright lies lead us to invading Iraq and overthrowing their dictator Saddam Hussein. There were no weapons of mass destruction as alleged, and there was never any proof of Iraq backing the Saudi lead terrorists.
No one is arguing against the idea of our servicemen and women fighting to protect us against terrorism. But 15 nearly consecutive years of war on several fronts that was started by almost complete un-truths need to be re-examined and questioned.
Instead, the governments spends tens of millions on propaganda marketing, including paying the NFL, commercials and other ads putting the heroics of our servicemen and women on display. They have been used as pawns to stop the American people from questioning the trillions of dollars that have been spent on wars and military strategy that are questionable at best.
Our men and women of the military should and must be applauded for their service and commitment. However, the praise we bestow upon servicemen and women must not be confused with our ability to loudly and boldly question the tactics and strategies of our politicians to expend so many human and financial resources without true accountability.
The service of those that have committed to our protection can never be questioned. The politicians and those that profit from war NEED to be examined.
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