This week, specifically Wednesday, August 31st, US combat operations in Iraq were officially ended by President Obama, putting an end to nearly eight years of war there. Some 50,000 or so troops will remain behind in an advisory role, but power was officially transferred over to the Iraqi government this week.
The US paid a heavy price for what was accomplished there. About 4,300 American service personnel lost their lives, another 30,000 were wounded. From those numbers come countless additional lives which were affected….the families of those brave people, enduring grief, depression, financial devastation.
I won’t debate in this forum whether going to Iraq was the right or the wrong thing to do. I have always felt that war is a terrible way for mankind to attempt to solve its disputes, but the fact remains there are people and
governments out there who are intent on domination, destruction and terrorism. I don’t know of another way in which to deal with those kinds of people and it would appear the governments of the sane world do not either.
I didn’t go to war, I was too young for Vietnam, I was too old for the Gulf War. I didn’t personally know someone who made the ultimate sacrifice in Iraq, so I cannot speak for the immense grief that would be felt by losing a father, mother, son, daughter, husband, wife or fiance in war time.
Yes, US service women fought alongside service men in this war and many suffered casualties.
In World War 2, what is considered by many to be America’s greatest generation went to Europe and fought side by side with our Allies and freed a substantial part of the world from the tyranny of Hitler. War has been glorified in movies and on TV, in literature and in memoirs.
We don’t seem to have the same enthusiasm for war that our ancestors did, but war persists nonetheless.
The history of mankind is replete with war, will there ever be a time that it
will not. We can only hope.
Yes, the war in Iraq is officially over, but another continues in Afghanistan.
1500 years ago, the game of chess was invented, some historians say, as a way to alleviate the bloodshed of war…kings could play chess to solve their
disputes….it didn’t work.
Maybe, here in the 21st century, we could try a video game?