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Paul Elisha: A Debt That Must Be Paid

Of all our country’s national observances, Veterans’ Day has always had a special importance, because wars have touched so many American lives, since the first Revolution, that changed our colonial-vassal status to an independent federated democratic republic, the continuity of which depends on all of its citizens.  That continuity has been tested too often, at increasing costs in money, materials, and precious human resources, with depressing signs of higher costs to come.  Sadly, the partisan pride at having survived the horror that claimed and maimed so many of their comrades has also compelled many combat veterans to be silent about the terrible dangers they escaped.  Prodded by the prospect of greater, more painful sacrifice, combat veterans who’ve served in our armed forces should raise their voices against war, as a sequential ‘next-step,’ in any negotiated effort to solve a difficulty or a perceived threat by anyone.  In our past service, what we WWII veterans saw of combat turned many of us into ‘soldiers against war!’

In addition to joining us, all past and present combat veterans should also urge resumption of conscription for national service, whenever any form of military combat is  voted on by the U.S. Congress, with no deferment granted for any congressional member who voted – ‘yes,’ or for eligible family members.  Those who favor war should experience its true cost.

Divided or not, there’s one thing on which all members of Congress should agree:  the continuous debt owed to those who’ve served in combat with our Military must be paid.   Our President has spoken often of his determination to do so but a petty G.O.P., that puts peeve ahead of patriotism, deters and dodges its sworn duty.  Now, they must put pettiness aside or get out of the way and let those who can, do what needs to be done, for all our deserving veterans.  Vigilant news media reporters confirm a critical and on-going  need for improvement in Veterans Services, that pleads for redress.  When those who should do not to respond, it indicts us all.  Those who’ve served and suffered, for us, deserve better.

The views expressed by commentators are solely those of the authors. They do not necessarily reflect the views of this station or its management.

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