Wars and our wonderful military

Published 12:00 am Thursday, December 11, 2003

Here we go. I know I’ll never hear the end of this. I’m not Irish for no reason. I was put here to cause controversy. Guys (if I have any who read what I write – try me, guys) will shake their head and murmur, &uot;What does she know?&uot; Hang in here and find out.

I’m starting with the Civil War. Is that courage? I’m from the North. See what I mean, guys? Now all I’ll say here is I’m not old enough to have gotten involved too deeply. From all I’ve read the South rode better, shot much better, watch out if swords were in play. They should have been coached more to learn viciousness in fighting. We’re great at it. Before I have southern soldiers – swords in hand – attacking the center here, let’s move on.

In 1916, the year I was born, the country was calling the Germans some pretty awful names. Just as Americans expect, we knocked them out. No swords nor vicious fighting, which we do so well.


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Comes the big one always called WWII. This one I know about. I was the gorgeous gal who met a Naval doctor, married him and had him gone for a year-and-a-half, returning from the Pacific War theatre to his first child . We had two enemies this time – Germany and Japan. We fought the furious American way so naturally, we licked them both. Victory was designated as VE (European victory) and VJ (Japan victory.) We have the greatest military in the world. Ask any country. Everyone knows that.

We did not show our usual skill and class in Korea and Vietnam. Vietnam was a war many in the U.S. objected to and were quite vocal about. Young men were taking off to Canada to avoid being drafted and fighting a war they did not agree with.

Now to our military occupying Iraq: Our boys and girls are now in Muslim territory and things are not what they expected to find. Our own people were not enthused about fighting here. The combat fighting was declared to be finished, but guerrilla Iraqi troops continue attacks on our troops so the fighting continues. We lose men every day. We were more successful when combat was the order of the day. Guess we’ll just have to fight dirty as the guerrillas do.

This is far from an approved war. Many Americans feel we’re in Iraq because George wanted it. The cost is unbelievably high, and the more attention paid to get our economy in better shape. The thought of our military staying so long in Iraq has not set too well with most Americans. Let’s get them home. War is hell, even you’re winning.

Florence Arena is a resident of the Hillcrest Retirement Center and a regular News-Herald columnist.