Monday, October 12, 2009

Proud to Be An American

Saturday night I watched this program on the Military Channel (LOVE the Military Channel) called "Combat Zone". This particular episode was about 8 Army Special Forces soldiers behind enemy lines in Iraq, I can't remember the year. This was the show that prompted my Tweet/FaceBook status update "proud to be an American".

The (true) story recalled an incident when the Air Force had to come rescue these 8 Special Forces soldiers. I picked up on the story when these 8 soldiers were camouflaged in a ditch watching a highway for enemy activity. Two children accidentally happened upon their location and spotted them. The soldiers immediately jumped out of their cammo'd position and held the children at gun point. Their options? 1) shoot the children so they would not give away their position 2) drug the kids until they could leave or 3) let the kids go, give up their hiding spot and risk being discovered. They chose the latter, at great risk to themselves. It seems the children never gave them up.

Later, something similar happened and a shepherd (adult male) happened upon their hiding spot. They had the same option with him as they did the kids, and again, they chose to let the man go. The shepherd immediately ran off, pulled out a pistol and shot into the air 3 times. This, ultimately, brought a whole platoon of soldiers down on these 8 Special Forces soldiers.

The rest of the show was about the Air Force providing close ground support to defend the soldiers until they could be evacuated safely that night. As they were waiting for nightfall, one soldier recounted how he had an enemy soldier in his sights and paused, almost too long, because of the clarity with which he saw the enemy soldier's face. He had been raised a Christian and had a difficult time being in a position to have to kill another human being. The soldier got emotional retelling the story.

My first emotion watching this was pride being an American. I was proud of the moral choices these soldiers made. I was amazed at the technology and weapons at their disposal (including the F-16s which offered close ground support). I was in awe of the courage of these men under such dangerous conditions. And I was thankful that they were there fighting the same terrorists who kill innocent civilians around the world in the name of their 'holy war'.

As I turned off the TV at the end of the show and pondered all of this, I was left with one more emotion...anger. I was angry at our President who would travel around the world and apologize for how "bad" our country has been. Whom I have NEVER heard support our troops and what they are doing for our country. Who panders to a violent religion that makes the exact opposite moral choices with innocents that the soldiers in the (real life) story I had just seen while pulling support to Christian events. Who won't listen to his general on the ground who says we need more troops in Afghanistan or we will loose the ground we have gained there (as well as the lives of more of our troops). Who is uncomfortable with the idea of "victory" in a war which he is supposedly leading our country.

I had no respect for Bush haters while President Bush was in office, so I don't want to be an Obama hater. I will not go there, but it is hard to support a President who is not as proud of our country as I am. To the men and women supporting and defending our country around the world, I say THANK YOU. To our President, I say, I AM PROUD TO BE AN AMERICAN...I WISH YOU WOULD BE, TOO.

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