Memorial Day finds many American’s getting together for BBQ’s and picnics; the weather is usually beautiful, with summer just around the corner. Mom and dad have the day off from work, and the kids enjoy the last holiday before summer break. How many of us take a moment to remember what the holiday is all about?
Originally called Decoration Day, the holiday started in 1865 as a day of remembrance for those in the Union army who gave their lives fighting in the Civil War. Changed to Memorial Day, and legally declared a national holiday in 1967, the holiday sets an official day where all Americans remember all the men and woman of the armed forces who were killed while in the line of duty.
The death toll from the Afghan and Iraq wars now total over 6,000—when will we be able to look back upon these wars as sad chapters in American history? Unfortunately we are in a situation where we continue pouring billions of dollars and sacrificing American soldiers for a cause that is hard to pinpoint.
Are we there to fight terrorism? Or are we there to nation build? If fighting terrorism is the true cause—we succeeded. Both Saddam Hussein and Osama Bin Laden are dead. To coin a Bush term, ‘Mission accomplished’, let’s send our troops home. Nation building is a more likely motive for the wars.
According to Donald Trump, if he was president, we would take all the oil from Iraq as a spoil of war. Although alarming, you have to respect his tenacity. Bush, and now Obama, makes no clear motivation for the loss of American lives. Afghanistan and Iraq both have governments that are a corrupt farce. A faceless insurgency continues to wreak havoc, and shows no signs of letting up in either country. Why can’t we leave?
Let us remember those thousands of brave souls who gave their lives while fighting wars that our leaders have deemed just.