***President Reagan's 1986 Memorial Day speech.
And we owe them something, those boys. We owe them first a promise: That just as they did not forget their missing comrades, neither, ever, will we. And there are other promises. We must always remember that peace is a fragile thing that needs constant vigilance. We owe them a promise to look at the world with a steady gaze and, perhaps, a resigned toughness, knowing that we have adversaries in the world and challenges and the only way to meet them and maintain the peace is by staying strong.
***As you head to the beach, take a moment to remember this one.
***Flower Power: Donated roses honor freedom's heroes at Arlington Cemetery.
***Of course, a twit from MSNBC is "uncomfortable" calling our fallen soldiers "heroes."
Yep, you read that headline right. Chris Hayes, of MSNBC's Sunday morning show "Up with Chris Hayes," says he's uncomfortable ascribing valorous terms to fallen military because it's "rhetorically proximate to justifications for more war."
I'm uncomfortable calling you a human being.
***Athletes killed in action. We all remember Pat Tillman. Here are some others who made the ultimate sacrifice for our freedom.
***CIA remembers those lost in covert War on Terror.
Here is "Battle Hymn of the Republic" as written by Julia Ward Howe when she published it in February, 1862, in the Atlantic Monthly:
Mine eyes have seen the glory of the coming of the Lord:
He is trampling out the vintage where the grapes of wrath are stored;
He hath loosed the fateful lightning of His terrible swift sword:
His truth is marching on.
I have seen Him in the watch-fires of a hundred circling camps,
They have builded Him an altar in the evening dews and damps;
I can read His righteous sentence by the dim and flaring lamps:
His day is marching on.
I have read a fiery gospel writ in burnished rows of steel:
"As ye deal with my contemners, so with you my grace shall deal;
Let the Hero, born of woman, crush the serpent with his heel,
Since God is marching on."
He has sounded forth the trumpet that shall never call retreat;
He is sifting out the hearts of men before His judgment-seat:
Oh, be swift, my soul, to answer Him! be jubilant, my feet!
Our God is marching on.
In the beauty of the lilies Christ was born across the sea,
With a glory in his bosom that transfigures you and me:
As he died to make men holy, let us die to make men free,
While God is marching on.
***And when you've carefully examined every feature of that soldier's face, stand up
straight and tall and smile your best smile. Thank that soldier, because it does what
some cannot or will not. It defends what it believes to be right with
it's very life.
But more important, it defends a perfect stranger - you.
And when you see a flag covered casket, stand in memorium of all the soldier's faces
you've examined. For when one of them falls, they all fall. And when one of them
stands, they all stand.
Shouldn't we stand with them?
June 2, 2006
***The patriot's blood is the seed of Freedom's tree. ~Thomas Campbell
***Have a great day!