I would like to thank Judy Chappell for her letter published on Nov. 11. She expressed my sentiments exactly.

My dad was in World War I and my wife’s family was in WWII. I was in the U.S. Air Force Strategic Air Command and knew that my roommates and friends, who were bomber and tanker air crew members, stood ready to fly knowing that half of them would probably not make it back home.

These people, along with the hundreds of thousands who served and who have lost their lives in service to the U.S., deserve our greatest respect.

If you’ve never been in the military, you can’t understand the feelings, camaraderie, and unspoken dedication we have.

I belong to the Crestwood Village veterans group, and we’ve talked about this and wish there were some way to convey our thoughts and attitudes to our country’s non-veterans, especially to today’s younger people who have grown up in a world where the idea of armed conflict and its effects has never entered their minds.

Larry Schwartz

Frederick

(11) comments

FCPS-Principal

Again, soldiers are not the ones safeguarding our freedoms, so stop claiming they are. They are not even in the position to do so. Soldiers are puppets of generals who are puppets of the JCS. They all just follow presidential orders, which originate from discussions with the JCS for military matters. Soldiers are thus tools of the president who is a politician that cares only for his own power. Freedoms are safeguarded by lawyers and judges and the likes of the ACLU. If not for them the government, i.e., president and congress, would have taken them away long ago and never given them back. In times of war our liberties are the first casualties under the phony baloney excuse of national security. We saw that in Adams' Alien and Sedition Act, Lincoln's suspension of Habeas Corpus, Wilson's sedition acts, Roosevelt's internment acts, Bush's ill-named Patriot Act, and many many other similar acts. Slowly, parts of all these acts are overturned, but by courts, not elected officials. No president has ever said, "Gee, we should repeal this act because it violates the Bill of Rights." Rights like the right to privacy and the right of gays to marry have come from lawyers and judges, not the military. So remember: The judicial branch is what safeguards our liberties, not the legislative branch and certainly not the executive branch. And not the military. That you can bet your life on.

gabrielshorn2013

Good God what is wrong with you FAUX? Although I support the ACLU, they are not the ones that defend our country from foreign invaders. Remember WWI and WWII? Did lawyers tell Hitler, Mussolini, and Tojo to stop or they will sue them? No, it was our military that turned the tide of the Axis expansion, and put those aggressors back within their boundaries. Our world would be significantly different if the Allies failed. It was the military that pushed Saddam Hussein out of Kuwait, back into Iraq. As for domestic liberties, you may have a point, but law enforcement keeps those that would do us at harm in check. Lawyers and the courts can only uphold the laws established by Congress, the States, and local statutes. No law, no foul.

jsklinelga

Gabe

You have to wonder about who FCPS really is.

shiftless88

Gabe; I get your point but really, when was the last time we fought to defend our liberties? That would be WWII. Even Afghanistan, which I agreed with, was pretty much just revenge. 9/11 was a one-hit wonder and the chance of seriously being threatened again wasn't much hindered by our invasion of that country.

DickD

Thank you for your service, Larry. How about writing some articles on your experiences? Sounds like you were flying over Europe, am I right?

jsklinelga

Mr. Shwartz,

You have expressed a concern that is certainly worthy of note. Unlike previous generations most young people today have no thought about military service. There is little chance they would have to fight in any conflict unless they volunteered. In certain respects it is similar to law enforcement. Most likely the push for gun control is influenced by this. The thought of having to use a gun against another human being to protect our nation's freedom or our own personal safety is an anathema . A disconnect exists. But you and your fellow veterans know the world is not ideal. Some must pay the price for freedom and law and order.

DickD

Interesting, Jim. Having been in the Marine Corp, I can say killing anyone is not what I wanted to do, but we were trained to do just that. At boot camp you learn to follow orders, unquestionably. Guns may be bad, but we also practiced bayonet trainging, using pogo sticks. You learn quicly there is nothing fair about fighting to the death. We would have one on one, two on one, even three on one and sometimes the odds were reversed.

During combat and advanced combat training you learn more. I was in a tank battalion and we used high explosive anti tank shells some of the time. We also had a 50 caliber machine gun on top of the turret, in addition to coordinated 30 caliber machine guns and a 90 milimeter.

After WWII we had a German exchange student come to our school. He had been in Hitler's youth movement. Not by choice, but because it was mandatory for all young Germans. I still think of what it would have been like if we had of been older and been shooting at each other. Thank God, that didn't happen.

Today, Franz comes to all of our high school class reunions and is liked very much. Franz actually served in the U.S. Army, before he went back to live in Germany.

jsklinelga

DickD

"Thank God that did not happen" Amen!! But it is a reality. You asked why I would like a draft. Simple. If people were conscripted we would be engaged in far fewer wars with far less killing. The draft was a primary catalyst fueling the anti-Viet Nam protest.

DickD

SMH I just don't understand how the draft has anything to do with being involved with war. The draft is to fill the military ranks. With a full or what is considered full military we could fight more wars and be ready to fight. But look closely at why wars are started. You will find it is for economic reasons.

jsklinelga

DickD

Simple answer. If people are required to serve justification for any engagement will receive greater scrutiny. I understand the logic of an all volunteer service but it makes it far easier to prosecute police actions. Anyway moot point.

shiftless88

jsk; your answer doesn't make sense given the current long-running conflicts we have had using a volunteer force. Can you please clarify?

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
Engage ideas. This forum is for the exchange of ideas, insights and experiences, not personal attacks. Ad hominem criticisms are not allowed. Focus on ideas instead.
TURN OFF CAPS LOCK.
Don't threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
No trolls. Off-topic comments and comments that bait others are not allowed.
No spamming. This is not the place to sell miracle cures.
Say it once. No repeat or repetitive posts, please.
Help us. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.