Day reminds us to be grateful


Editorial Board

The Issue: Veterans honored on Thursday, Nov. 11.

The Editorial: It’s a lesson to all of us to remember those who are fighting and those who have died.

As casualties mount in Iraq, the old adage “Freedom is not free” comes to mind.

On Veteran’s Day, Brookings veterans and service members were honored at the Brookings Memorial as reported on page 4 in this week’s Collegian.

Americans are dying in that far-off land and in Afghanistan to not only defend our nation but to give other people better lives and a brighter future.

It’s quite an act of patriotism to put yourself in harm’s way to defend the quality of life and freedom in your own country. It’s sacrifice on a whole different level to do so for others.

To the historians among us, the actions of our fighting men and women should come as no surprise.

In places with names like Belleau Wood, Tarawa, Bastogne, Inchon, Khe Sanh, Grenada, Panama City, Khafji, Mogadishu and Fallujah, our nation’s fighting forces have put themselves at risk to defeat evil, regardless of costs.

And those costs have not only meant physical pain and death, but the emotional trauma of experiencing this hell called war. For every battle wound a veteran has suffered, there are tenfold on the heart and mind. It’s true that even those who escape war unscathed have given up a part of themselves.

That is why on Veterans Day reminds that we should be thankful and understanding of those who have served and those who are serving.

You might not support the mission, but you better support the troops.

Yet even during times when that support didn’t exist at home, our fighting forces did not let it diminish their resolve to follow orders and put their own lives on hold to serve their country.

No matter how unpopular the war, our men and women in uniform have been there for the rest of us time and time again.

Without their sacrifices throughout the history of our great nation, America would surely not have survived and become a ray of hope in a lost and often dangerous world.

The Associated Press contributed to this editorial.