AmeriCAN-DO Attitude

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Troops to Politicians: Please… Just Shut the F**k Up!

Laughing Wolf at Blackfive directs us to Sgt Hook’s “Letter to the Candidates“. As Laughing Wolf notes, this letter should be read by all elected officials, not just the candidates. And it should also be read by all of us civilians as well, to keep things in perspective, since, as Laughing Wolf notes, this sentiment is common among the elisted personnel:

It is well worth reading, and well worth sharing. It also echoes a message that I was asked to send by multiple enlisted soldiers this last embed. Note, enlisted: not officers, not senior NCOs, but enlisted. Grunts, line animals, the guys on the sharp end. The guys who are walking among and working with Iraqis every day and helping them not just rebuild, but build new and better lives and communities. The guys who watch Iraqis pay a price for jaws flapping here that creates violence and problems there. The guys who catch the packet as well when jaws flapping here creates violence and problems there. The summation is, Iraq and the lives involved are NOT a political football for your use, and what you say is heard and acted upon there. I like the way one of them put it: “Please tell them to just shut the f**k up!” Your words do have power, and are getting people hurt and killed, and making it harder, far harder than it should be, to get the job done so they can come home and leave something good behind.

Go read the entire letter. An exerpt:

[ … ] I have been witness to Iraqi citizens who previously cowered behind mud walls come out into the light and demand their neighborhoods back. They’ve found the courage to stand in their streets and dare evil to return. They do so, because they trust the American Soldier and that he/she has got their backs. I’m sure you are aware of just how hard it is to build trust, and then keep that trust once it’s established. So I ask, what happens to that trust, to those Iraqi citizen neighborhood watch groups, to the Iraqi children once again attending school when we immediately withdraw our troops?

It may not be important to you, but I’d also like to know if you’ve considered how our men and women serving in uniform, our heroes, will handle letting down an entire people? We are here, boots on the ground, showing that the trust we’ve asked for is not misplaced. Should we be immediately withdrawn, our warriors will face having to live their lives with the knowledge that they’ve failed that trust. As Soldiers, we take an oath and our word means everything to us. The thought of not living up to our word is both foreign and frightening. [ … ]

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January 17, 2008 , 1:40AM - Posted by | 2008 Presidential Election, Iraq, Military, The Long War, War Effort in Iraq

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