To all my brothers and sisters in uniform and that (like me) no longer wear the uniform, I wish you the best in this uncertain New Year. I know you don't want to be in or be preparing to go to Afghanistan or Iraq or any of the surrounding countries where we run support operations, but I want to thank you for going there anyway. It boggles the minds of our international neighbors that we have an all volunteer force that produces the finest Officers, NCOs and junior enlisted.
Our junior enlisted folks and NCOs are now better educated than the majority of commissioned officers that fought in WWII, Korea and Vietnam. And yet, through it all, you keep re-enlisting. No matter what other people say, you are the future of America and what she stands for. You follow orders from your Commander-in-Chief, just as you will follow the orders of the incoming Commander-in-Chief. I, for one, thank you for your service and in some cases, your continued service to our nation. You should be proud. I'm going to put up a few quotes from a slide show my dad sent me. Enjoy:
September 14, 1944 on the Crozon Peninsula (western part of France):
"I am to surrender to you," German LtGen Ramcke told BG Canham, Assistant Division Commander, 8th ID, through his own interpreter. "I want to see your credentials". BG Canham pointed to the eager dogfaces crowding the entrance with their M-1s. "These are my credentials". This blunt phrase put the Nazi in his place, and paid dramatic tribute to the real power behind America's Army — the G.I.
"The Spartans do not enquire how many the enemy are, but where they are." Agis II, 427 B.C.
"…an imperfect plan implemented immediately and violently will always succeed better than a perfect plan." General George S. Patton
"The Soldiers of TF 2-7 IN rose to the occasion. All of the values their mothers and fathers and grandparents taught them, they learned. They stepped up to the plate. They did not just follow their leaders, they ACCOMPANIED their leaders. Sometimes, they LED the way! They said, "Sir, the enemy's over there … don't worry, we'll get you there!"
LTC Scott Rutter, Commander, TF 2-7 IN, May 15, 2003
I will continue in Part 2.