Gifts Of Thanks

Major Elizabeth Robbins, deployed in Iraq, thanks America and Americans for the "paper love" sent to the troops deployed overseas. It means the world to the men and women serving our country in distant places.

Those of us overseas know that "support the troops" is more than a slogan. Here we are besieged by what my master sergeant calls "paper love," the cards, letters, posters and other gestures of support sent by people across America. The paper love is often accompanied by packages of snacks and comfort items. Some mail comes from family members, but even more is sent by private citizens and troop support organizations. The war has inspired a remarkable level of civic involvement that goes largely unnoticed — except by those of us in the field or recovering stateside.

All of us are volunteers. We're in Iraq because we want to serve. We are well educated and physically fit and could have pursued a variety of other life options. But, to paraphrase Defense Secretary Robert Gates, we are driven by the romantic and optimistic ideal that we can improve the world. We are seeing real progress on the ground, and we are helping Iraq to change.

Idealism, however, does not diminish our longing for home or the pain of missing family. It does not dispel all fear and doubt, and it does not heal our wounded or fallen friends. So when we are feeling disheartened, we open the care packages and read the letters.

Please read the whole thing. And please, if you can, donate to Project Valour-IT. The button is at the top of the sidebar. It is another way to show your support for those who serve.

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6 Responses to Gifts Of Thanks

  1. carol h says:

    Really? The soldiers in Iraq are there because they are romantics who want to improve the world? The soldiers I know have inlisted because they are attracted to the military life, need money to pay for college, or can’t afford health insurance for their kids any other way. Very, very, few are driven by any mission to improve the world.

  2. Gaius says:

    Really? Tell that to my son, a combat veteran of two tours in Iraq.

  3. martian says:

    What’s a nice liberal like you doing at a blog like this, carol? Seriously, this is a typical liberal attitude – that no one really joins the military because they are patriotic or have ideals, they join because they have no other choice or because they are so “psychotic” that they actually like military life. As a vet who also (many years ago) voluntarily enlisted, I get really tired of the liberal mantra. I am proud of my service and proud of all those, like Gaius’ son, who continue to volunteer because they are patriotic romantics who DO want to improve the world! Believe it or not, carol, not all of us are ashamed to admit that we care.

  4. Robert says:

    Those caring soldiers must be wondering what they are doing in Iraq.

  5. martian says:

    They know what they’re doing there, Robert. It’s you liberals who don’t understand.

  6. Robert says:

    martian,
    Sure I do.
    Protecting America’s corporate interests.

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