Thursday, November 07, 2019

Ed Emery: On November 11, honor veterans

(From Sen. Ed Emery, R-Lamar)

On Monday, Nov. 11, government offices will close and many Americans will stay home from work. Sadly, some of us need to be reminded why we have a holiday in mid-November. So there is no confusion, let us explicitly declare that on this day, we honor America’s veterans.

The origin of Veterans Day began at “the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month” of 1918. On that day, the United States and Germany ended World War I — a conflict so brutal, and a cause so great, it was described as “the war to end all wars.” One year after peace was achieved, President Roosevelt declared the first Armistice Day, with solemn pride in the heroism of our troops and a hope for a world filled with peace among nations.

As we know, World War I did not end all wars. Following the next world war there was a call to update Armistice Day, and create a holiday in honor of all American servicemen and women. In 1954 President Eisenhower signed the legislation authorizing Veterans Day. One of three federal holidays that recognizes military service,

Veterans Day is the day Americans express their gratitude for everyone who has ever served honorably in the nation’s Armed Forces. The other two holidays, Armed Forces Day and Memorial Day, are reserved for current active duty military and those who sacrificed their lives in service of our county.

At a time when just seven percent of Americans have worn the uniform of America’s military, it becomes increasingly difficult for many of us to feel a connection to service. We see an old man proudly wearing a “Veteran” cap or notice a Purple Heart license plate on a car and we are reminded that others have made sacrifices that we can scarcely understand. Few of us fully appreciate those who have defended our freedoms.

There are times, though, when the meaning of service becomes abundantly clear. 

One such reminder came early on Sunday morning, Oct. 27. The president of the United States appeared before television cameras to announce a daring overnight raid in Syria. Eight helicopters descended out of the darkness, delivering elite warriors in search of one of America’s most dangerous enemies. 

During the ensuing firefight, a number of ISIS terrorists were killed and others were captured. Abu Bakr al Baghdadi, the leader of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, took his own life, detonating a suicide belt that also killed his own children.

The raid on al Baghdadi’s compound in the remote village of Barisha required careful planning and detailed coordination. Untold numbers of men and women pulled together to provide intelligence, support and logistics. For every soldier on the ground in Syria that night, there were dozens more performing tasks essential to the success of the mission. We’ll probably never know the names of the dedicated men and women responsible for eliminating this terrorist leader, but we understand that these warriors stepped forward to accept a duty that most of us are unwilling to bear.

There are currently about 20 million men and women wearing the uniforms of America’s various Armed Forces. These young people – and the vast majority are under the age of 30 – volunteer to keep our nation safe and defend our interests overseas. A relatively few soldiers, sailors, airmen or Marines are asked to lead history-making missions. Most perform less spectacular, but equally essential duties. All deserve our appreciation and respect.

Let us never forget that before our troops swooped into Barisha in search of al Baghdadi, previous generations of young men fought bravely at places such as Mosul, Khe Sanh, Inchon and Bastogne. These names, once unfamiliar to us, are now part of our history and forever seared in the memories of yesterday’s warriors. Then, as today, the soldiers at the tip of the spear relied on help from many more uniformed personnel whose efforts made their success possible. It is these men who stand before us today wearing the veteran’s cap and proudly saluting when the America flag passes by.

Let’s never forget why we have a day off work in November. We rest because others have served. Yes, events half a world away remind us that there are heroes in our midst. But, on Veterans Day, every man or woman who ever wore the uniform of America’s military is a hero.


Anonymous said...

I am sorry, but Ed you must have flunked citizenship in school. Just like our president, must be a republican failing, who said the aircraft of the revoluntary war help win it, Roosevelt was not the president after WW I. What a bunch of ignorant people that are followed by so many other ignorant people in our state. For God's sake do some reading other than what your lackey staff print out for you, or are you using some people from MSSU for staff.

Anonymous said...

Well said 9:00 AM. The sheer ignorance of the super majority that runs our state is breath taking. It is said we get the leaders we deserve. I guess that says it all doesn't it.

Anonymous said...


Hell Yeah said...

4.) Trump melted down and kept yelling, “Quiet!” at a reporter.

While the president was trying to accuse former Vice President Joe Biden of corruption, a reporter interrupted him with a question, which made Trump visibly angry.

“Be quiet,” Trump said. “Be quiet! Quiet! Quiet!”

5.) Trump stuns reporters by saying he might attend Russia’s May Day military parade.

Trump revealed that Russian President Vladimir Putin has invited him to attend next year’s May Day Parade in Moscow.

“President Putin invited me to the — it’s a very big deal!” he said. “Celebrating the end of the war, etc., etc. A very big deal. So I appreciate the invitation… I would love to go if I could.”

Anonymous said...

Donald Trump Jr. wrote that visiting the Arlington National Cemetery in 2017 made him think of his family's "sacrifices" in his new book, "Triggered: How the Left Thrives on Hate and Wants to Silence Us."

What he's saying: The historic cemetery, which memorializes hundreds of thousands of American troops, veterans and their families, reminded Trump Jr. "of all the attacks we’d already suffered as a family, and about all the sacrifices we’d have to make to help my father succeed."

What they're saying, per the Washington Post: Trump Jr.'s "framing of the Arlington Cemetery anecdote, in particular, has provoked fervent criticism and accusations of callousness."

"Eight men I served with are buried in Section 60 of Arlington. I visit them monthly," tweeted Rep. Ruben Gallego (D-Ariz.), who served in the Iraq War. "Even if Donald JR. lived a 1,000 years he will never even get close to being as good and honorable as they were. Sacrifice is only a word to the Trumps."

The full passage from the book:

"Meanwhile, it also took two months for me to realize the enormity of what my father had accomplished, and the weight of the job that he’d won. It was the day before the inauguration, and we were driving into Arlington National Cemetery, where he was to lay a wreath on the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. I rarely get emotional, if ever. I guess you’d call me hyper-rational, stoic. Yet, as we drove past the rows of white grave markers, in the gravity of the moment, I had a deep sense of the importance of the presidency and a love of our country. I was never prouder of my father than when I watched as he stood before the tomb, his hand over his heart, while the Army bugler played 'Taps.'

"In that moment, I also thought of all the attacks we’d already suffered as a family, and about all the sacrifices we’d have to make to help my father succeed—voluntarily giving up a huge chunk of our business and all international deals to avoid the appearance that we were 'profiting off the office.'"