Today is the day that the United States honors its fallen soldiers. Most of our allies honor their brave men and women on other days (mostly 11 November) but I would like to also extend today’s honor to those allies of ours who have likewise fallen. The fight for liberty has not been America’s alone for some time now. The United States would have been in desperate straits without stalwart friends and allies by our side.
It also seems that, in the United States, that burden of service has not been equally shared for some time, either. Growing up, everyone my (current) age or older had lost someone close – a father, uncle, older brother, all of the above – in World War II and my parents’ generation had been touched significantly by Korea and Vietnam. Scanning my facebook feed I realized I know only a couple of soldiers close to my age who died while serving. I’m not sorry as that means more of the ones I know who served made it home but it’s also clear there are many who are hit disproportionately. It seems to me such disparity in who bears our military burden is not healthy for a society but perhaps today is not the day for such thoughts. In any case, my thoughts on the subject are muddled.
Thanks to those who fell and, though they insist this day isn’t for them (for which I admire them), the choice to risk death in service to country isn’t made in the heat of battle, it’s made on the date that the soldier volunteers, so to those who served, risked it all and lost their brothers and sisters in arms, thanks to you as well. May you know peace and may we be worthy of your sacrifices.