by Pa Rock
There was an article in Huffington Post today regarding a living veteran of our current wars who is being considered for the nation's highest military honor: the Congressional Medal of Honor. The young soldier's name was not revealed, but his (or her) heroic exploits were. He (or she) certainly sounds like a deserving individual for this great honor.
There have been six other Medal of Honor recipients from the current wars - and all were awarded posthumously. The current individual under consideration would be the first living recipient of the honor since Vietnam.
I am an army veteran, and though I never served in a conflict or war zone, I have nothing but respect for those who have done so. I am also cognizant of the arguments that brought us into the current wars, and know that their connection to the attack on the World Trade Center is tenuous at best. One of our motives was to secure access to Middle Eastern oil fields, and another was apparently to let Junior Bush show his daddy that he could do something that daddy had failed to do - topple Saddam Hussein (although Saddam had diddly-squat to do with the attack on the Twin Towers).
And, an overriding impetus for war - any and all wars - is to feed the Military Industrial Complex (MIC), something that President Eisenhower (Five-star General of the Army Eisenhower) told us to beware of half a century ago.
Today after reading the piece on the potential Medal of Honor recipient, I also read some of the public comments that had been submitted in response to the article. One, by a person identified as PharmaCan impressed me as a very cogent argument on why nations go to war. He (or she) also pointed out the bad business of opening the treasury to the Military Industrial Complex, yet under-funding health care for the veterans of our wars. PharmaCan did a very nice job of highlighting the hypocrisy of how we treat the members and past members of our military - and who actually profits from war. Here are those remarks:
Sadly, the brave soldiers who are dying in Afghanistan are not gallantly giving their lives for their country, they are dying to feed the profits of the MIC.
I'll not say anything critical of the brave young men and women who are fighting and dying there. They probably believe that they are indeed fighting for their country. But dead is dead, as far as each individual casualty goes, and all those that died or were wounded surely felt that they were fighting for a cause much greater than themselves.
When you take the criteria, "Requirements include great personal danger and volunteering to take an action that no one could be critical of if that action wasn't taken.", since we have an all volunteer military, wouldn't that describe every single one of our children who are fighting in that god-forsaken debacle?
It's time to recognize this latest MIC profit center for what it is and bring our brave soldiers home. It is well past time that we start taking better care of those veterans who have been wounded, both physically and mentally, in all of our ill-begotten military campaigns of the last 50 years. All the medals in the word will not erase the shame we should feel for the atrocious way we treat our wounded veterans. It is disgraceful that we can spend trillions of dollars on programs that enrich the MIC, but are pikers when it comes to taking care of those brave soldiers who sacrifice so much.
Let's take proper care of those who take care of us.