From a Friend

I usually avoid politics and religion on my blog.

Lynne Sears Williams sent me this video, which was made by a friend of hers, featuring her son.

Message from a young soldier.

Whether you agree with what the young man has to say or not, and I don’t agree with everything, he paid the price to express his views.

He reminds me in many ways of Will. He wears his hair the same, the same mustache and beard. Of course, Will has to be clean shaven now because of the gas masks.

It makes me think of Will and cringe a bit inside. Their mission will be convoy security, which isn’t an easy job. He assures me their area is fairly calm with few attacks. I have prayed a shield of protection around him and the rest of the company. I have to trust God to care for them.

Will joined the Guards when he was seventeen. He was a junior in high school. He planned on becoming a marine, but he could join the Guards while he was still in school and have two years under his belt by the time he graduated. He planned on being career military.

When the recruiter came out to the house to talk to us, he made it very plain it wasn’t a matter of if he would deploy, but rather when. The normal rotation was once every seven years and since they had been called into active service to help in New York after 9-11, they probably wouldn’t be called up again for a while. His unit went to Iraq when Will was a senior. Since he was still in school and still had his AIT to finish, they didn’t call him up to finish the tour with them.

They leave again in November for another tour.

Will could have volunteered to go to Kosovo or several other places and it would have taken him out of the call to Iraq. He chose to stay with his unit and go to Iraq. He has a deep bond with the men and he believes in the mission. They’ve already been once. They know the dangers. They told him about the experiences. He isn’t some dewey-eyed child, dreaming of glory. Perhaps some of them are more adamant about their beliefs after witnessing the horror of the Towers.

So, while I support the right for everyone to believe and speak what they wish, I support my son and his mission even more.

This is the reason I am not engaging in the political debates. It’s the reason I avoid my favorite writing forum. It’s the reason I avoid a lot of blogs. The men and women who serve are who I support. Politics be damned.


  1. Tony, yes they are. I’ve had the opportunity to attend several functions with this company and it is amazing.

    One woman at a ceremony here remarked to me, “Aren’t they just the most beautiful young men?”

    They are and it touches your heart to watch them. So many expectant mothers being left behind. So many children clinging to Daddy and Daddy holding on just as tightly.

    The pride you feel when you’re around them is infectious.

  2. As a vet I definitely support the troops. And I respect the rights of individuals to have an opinion just as you say, Julie.

    What I am confused by is how thinking the war was wrong is disrespecting the troops. It isn’t. They are doing a fantastic job in trying circumstances–the worst circumstances, IMO, because it’s practically an occupation. The rationale for the war cannot add to nor take away from the professionalism and courage with which the members of the armed forces do their respective jobs.

  3. WW, I don’t agree that an opinion on the war disrespects the troops. For or against it.

    I wish the Iraqis were prepared to defend their country tomorrow so our troops could come home. They aren’t ready and their leaders know this.

    The main thing I do agree with is the final wording on his statement. The day we lose our will to fight is the day we lose our freedom.

    Watch the recordings of Bin Laden. Read what he has to say. We ran from so many fights they started he knew it was safe to bring down the towers. “America is a paper tiger. She will never fight.”

    Years of running from conflicts brought the world to this opinion. Sometimes you do have to stand up and fight.

  4. I think Bin Laden had more in mind than that, though. The key to terrorism and his plans is that he says he will bankrupt us in our response to his actions. Well, hmmm… The argument over what we shoulda/ coulda/ did do in response will be going on long after our kids die, I think.

    (And I wasn’t saying you thought anything about opinions on the war; just commenting on the vid!)

  5. I haven’t heard him say that, though he did think the attack on the Towers would send us spiraling financially. I seriously don’t think he thought we would fight back. At least that’s what he said in interviews and on tape.

    He named Somalia specifically and said, “our boys were surprised the Americans had no morale. We hit them once and they ran. We were expecting a fight like we had with the Russians. We knew we were safe to attack them.” That is probably not verbatim, but very close.

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