General David Petraeus about our military today
This was sent to me by a trusted friend and I promised him I would use it. Thank you Tom!
In spite of any human weakness, his perspective is on the mark!
I remember the day I found out I got into West Point. My mom actually showed up in the hallway of my high school and waited for me to get out of class. She was bawling her eyes out and apologizing that she had opened up my admission letter. She wasn’t crying because it had been her dream for me to go there. She was crying because she knew how hard I’d worked to get in, how much I wanted to attend, and how much I wanted to be an infantry officer.
I was going to get that opportunity. That same day two of my teachers took me aside and essentially told me the following:
“David, you’re a smart guy. You don’t have to join the military. You should go to college, instead.”
I could easily write a theme defending West Point and the military as I did that day, explaining that USMA is an elite institution, that separate from that it is actually statistically much harder to enlist in the military than it is to get admitted to college, that serving the nation is a challenge that all able-bodied men should at least consider for a host of reasons, but I won’t.
What I will say is that when a 16 year-old kid is being told that attending West Point is going to be bad for his future then there is a dangerous disconnect in America, and entirely too many Americans have no idea what kind of burdens our military is bearing.
In World War II, 11.2% of the nation served in four (4) years.
During the Vietnam era, 4.3% served in twelve (12) years.
Since 2001, only 0.45% of our population has served in the Global War on Terror.
These are unbelievable statistics. Over time, fewer and fewer people have shouldered more and more of the burden and it is only getting worse.
Our troops were sent to war in Iraq by a Congress consisting of 10% veterans with only one person having a child in the military. Taxes did not increase to pay for the war. War bonds were not sold. Gas was not regulated. In fact, the average citizen was asked to sacrifice nothing, and has sacrificed nothing unless they have chosen to out of the goodness of their hearts.
The only people who have sacrificed are the veterans and their families. The volunteers. The people who swore an oath to defend this nation. You stand there, deployment after deployment and fight on. You’ve lost relationships, spent years of your lives in extreme conditions, years apart from kids you’ll never get back, and beaten your body in a way that even professional athletes don’t understand.
Then you come home to a nation that doesn’t understand. They don’t understand suffering. They don’t understand sacrifice. They don’t understand why we fight for them. They don’t understand that bad people exist. They look at you like you’re a machine – like something is wrong with you. You are the misguided one – not them.
When you get out, you sit in the college classrooms with political science teachers that discount your opinions on Iraq and Afghanistan because YOU WERE THERE and can’t understand the macro issues they gathered from books, because of your bias.
You watch TV shows where every vet has PTSD and the violent strain at that. Your Congress is debating your benefits, your retirement, and your pay, while they ask you to do more. But the amazing thing about you is that you all know this. You know your country will never pay back what you’ve given up. You know that the populace at large will never truly understand or appreciate what you have done for them. Hell, you know that in some circles, you will be thought as less than normal for having worn the uniform. But you do it anyway.
You do what the greatest men and women of this country have done since 1775. YOU SERVED. Just that decision alone makes you part of an elite group.
“Never in the field of human conflict has so much been owed by so many to so few.” -Winston Churchill-
Thank you to the 11.2% and 4.3% who have served and thanks to the 0.45% who continue to serve our Nation.
General David Petraeus
West Point Class 1974
Today America is over-run with whiny Libtards that have NO idea what it means to serve this nation and can’t even remotely define the word HONOR.
We have a President in office that hates the military and is doing everything in his power to weaken that military, and thus break the back of the United States of America, Why Has Barack Hussein Obama Purged the Military?, and his agenda suits the needs of the Democratic party and their Liberal followers to a *T*.
I say this with NO hesitation: Liberalism is a disease; it is a cancer eating away the very heart of America.
I’m only one man and I am getting old. I’m not in very good health but I would still stand and fight for this nation and the American way of life, the one we had in MY youth, the problem is, I’m not a whiz kid or a slam-bang military leader, I’m an old guy with a really bad attitude and a blog.
General David Petraeus is a man of honor, a damned good leader and his patriotism is beyond question.
There are many men and women in our military that are of the same character, cut from the same cloth, and many more that are retirees. We also have a huge group of recently dismissed (fired) Command Staff, Officers and Non-Coms, that are also above reproach and they too have a burning love for this nation.
There has got to be some individuals in that crowd that are true leaders, some that can rally the troops and remove this CANCER that is destroying the USA.
Dear God, please let these Men of Honor come forward to save this nation and please let me live long enough to see America a free and thriving nation once again!