It’s all about the troops
Would like to relay a great story from a senior leader currently deployed in Baghdad, Iraq……
—”I was in line at our deli this week with a 21 year old PFC ftrom the 82d Airborne Division. He was soaked in sweat and had an M4 slung over his back and a big grin on his face. I started talking to him and found out he was in here on a quick break to drop off something at the Hqs/Palace while they patrolled Haifa Street just outside the embassy. They decided to grab lunch while they were here (good call). Haifa Street is one of the nastiest places on earth.
Al Qaeda considers the street its turf. The 82d Airborne vigorously disputes that claim. This young trooper was the most upbeat and enthusiastic person I have met since I have been here. After seven months of doing combat patrols, seeing his friends killed and getting shot at on a daily basis, he was not the least bit daunted or disillusioned. What he told me was, ‘this is a tough fight with bad people. They mean us harm. I am a paratrooper. I’m here to take care of it. There is plenty of work to do, but we are up to it.’
I was immediately reminded of a picture and quote taken during the Battle of the Bulge in December, 1944—-An entire US Armored Division was retreating from the Germans in the Ardennes Forest when a sergeant in a tank destroyer spotted an American digging a foxhole. The GI, PFC Martin, 325th Glider Infantry Regiment, looked up and asked, ‘are you looking for a safe place?? Yeah, answered the tanker. Well, buddy, he drawled, just pull your vehicle behind me….I’m the 82d Airborne and this is as far as the bastards are going.’
That young airborne PFC I met this week, once again, made me thank God for brave young paratroopers. I have no doubt that Haifa Street is as far as these bastards are going too. We all need to pause and thank God that our nation has been blessed, generation after generation, with young men and women like these two PFCs who, separated by 63 years and continents, are full of optimism and courage and do not take counsel of anyone’s fears.
The name and faces may change, but the spirit of our soldiers remains. This is why we do what we do for a living—-it’s all about soldiers.”
And that’s why GOE will always do what we do—-support our soldiers.
God bless all of them.
Amen to that, Ranger566!
You can see videos of the 82nd here.