The Strongest Generation

Discussion in 'OFF-Topic / Misc.' started by Thorlifter, Jul 12, 2008.

  1. Thorlifter

    Thorlifter Well-Known Member

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    I read this in the June 2008 issue of The American Legion and just had to share. It's a letter a veteran wrote to the editor.


    After reading remarks in Vet Voice regarding "The Strongest Generation" (February), I was struck by a thought that many of your readers might not have considered.

    The "greatest generation" is owed a debt we can never repay, but that generation is not unique. We owe a debt of gratitude to every man and woman who has ever worn the uniform of our country.

    I wonder how the Doughboys of World War I felt about World War II and its warriors. Doughboys lived and died in the trenches, thousands at a time. They lived with the fear of being gassed night and day. Medical treatment was poorer in quality and the casualty rate higher. Could they have thought the "greatest generation" had it easier?

    Did survivors of the Civil War think the same of veterans of the first world war? After all, they never had to fight the enemy standing straight up, facing the volley of a thousand muskets. And without the benefit of any real medical tratment, the bone saw may have been their worst fear.

    I wonder how our Vietnam War and Korean War veterans regard their younger brothers and sisters, who have since taken the fight to our enemies on foreign battlefields?

    Technology has made warfare different for each succeeding generation. We must remind ourselves that it is the grunt with his weapon who bears the brunt of any battle, and brings home scars both physical and emotional. There can be no such thing as, "My war was better than your war."

    -Paul Dudkowski, Katy, Texas.



    I thought this was well said.
     
  2. Wayne Little

    Wayne Little Well-Known Member

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    Agree Thor, it IS well said, something to think about...
     
  3. evangilder

    evangilder "Shooter"
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    That says it all right there. Yesterday on my lunch break I took a co-worker to the museum to check it out. A couple of sailors from Point Mugu were having their re-enlistment ceremony there. I got to chat with one of the sailors briefly. Before I left, I shook his hand and thanked him for his service.

    The tough part for me was that these guys looked so young. I know I was that young once too, but wow, does time change the perception.
     
  4. ToughOmbre

    ToughOmbre Active Member

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    Absolutely. I believe that ANY generation of Americans would have served and sacrificed in exactly the same manner, had the same type of threat become a reality.

    TO
     
  5. DerAdlerIstGelandet

    DerAdlerIstGelandet Der Crew Chief
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    Great post with lots of truth in it!

    Thank you for posting this!
     
  6. RabidAlien

    RabidAlien Active Member

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    Amen to all of the above! :salute: to anyone who's worn the uniform of their country...whether it be military, police, fire, rescue, etc.
     
  7. v2

    v2 Well-Known Member

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    I agree with you, Adler....
     
  8. Aussie1001

    Aussie1001 Member

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    Agree i am only saddened by the fact that they had to, war is a terrible thing.
     
  9. Screaming Eagle

    Screaming Eagle Active Member

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    :salute: to all our veterans and defence force personnel currently in conflict.
     
  10. Messy1

    Messy1 Well-Known Member

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    Thanks to all who have served our country.

    I have never served, but I think the best thing I can do to honor those who have served is to read and learn all I can about our history, and pass it down to my son. I'll do all I can to make sure he understands that his way of life is not free, and not too take it for granted. And I'll be damn sure he will not be like many of the kids today who do not have a basic understanding of our history as a country.
     
  11. ccheese

    ccheese Member In Perpetuity
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    I'm with Adler... Great Post ! Thanks

    Charles
     
  12. Soren

    Soren Banned

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    Good post Thorlifter, and it goes for all Europe esp. as well, certainly gives food for thought.

    It really was the birth of gunpowder and the following introduction of firearms and cannons to the battlefield which changed warfare most drastically from one century to the next.

    Firearms and cannons sort of made war more "civil" so to speak (Not that war is ever civil) and less brutal than before. Before guns were available you had to get up close and personal to your opponent and then slaughter him by either stabbing him, cleaving him in two or smashing him to death, extremely messy brutal business!

    Now gunpowder wasn't all good news for the soldier though as it brought new issues to the table. The introduction of firearms meant that the number of casualties (dead + wounded) on the battlefield increased drastrically, and suddenly there was a huge need for skilled medical surgeons physicians and new methods to treat the wounded.

    The wounds an 18th - 19th musket ball would generate if it hit someone were often quite horrific, and a hit to any of your limbs was highly likely going to result in it having to be amputated. The typical musket ball was of a large caliber, round and made out of soft metal, either lead or tin, and it was heavy. If you were hit in the thigh by such a round the sheer kinetic energy (heavy projectile) would first ensure that the projectile would blast through your thigh bone, shattering it, and then out the back where the softness of the projectile meant it acted just the same as todays hollow point projectiles, creating a large and nasty exit wound. Shrapnel from cannon balls often had the same effect.

    In short the introduction of gunpowder forced a rapid acceleration in technology methods within the medical world.
     
  13. comiso90

    comiso90 Active Member

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    I wore a uniform for 4 years 10 months and 28 days but the only danger I saw was driving in Turkey or hitting on British football fan women. I got my airborne wings... blew sh!t up but never once felt threatened.. (except during an anti desert shield demonstration in Athens when I was ID'd as a yank.. or the time in a Yugoslavian bar surrounded by soviets- both recreational indiscretions)

    Its not enough to wear the uniform.. honor belongs to those that feel the sting of combat.

    .
     
  14. DerAdlerIstGelandet

    DerAdlerIstGelandet Der Crew Chief
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    I disagree.

    Someone who decides to put the uniform on (well most of them okay), knows that they may have to make the ultimate sacrifice one day and is prepared to take it. Therefore they are serving their country as well and that is an honor in itself.

    Also not everyone gets the chance to see combat (thats good for them) but they serve in other activities. When I got back from flying a long 8 hour mission in Iraq, I wanted to go and get some chow, therefore those guys working in the mess tent were doing there duty to keep us guys going outside the wire sustained. That too is an honorable job.
     
  15. lesofprimus

    lesofprimus Active Member

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    Agreed Chris... When I was in the Teams, we had more support personal than actual SEALs... Without those non-combatants, we would have accomplished nothing....

    From the SBU guys and their tiny boats to the Seawolf chopper pilots, the backbone of any fighting force is the support they are provided with...

    My hats off to anyone who served in the uniform of their respective countries...
     
  16. DerAdlerIstGelandet

    DerAdlerIstGelandet Der Crew Chief
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    And not to forget the guys in our case such as the (non flying) mechanics, engine shop guys, electrician guys, etc.

    They all never see combat, but they keep the mission rolling.
     
  17. Lucky13

    Lucky13 Forum Mascot

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    I agree with you Adler...Aces and what not wouldn't be if it wasn't for the ground crews!

    :salute:
     
  18. Messy1

    Messy1 Well-Known Member

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    Yes, that is one thing my dad always told me. Everyone plays a part in the military, although some job aren't as glamorous as others, they all need to be done. The whole machine does not run as smooth with a cog or two missing!
     
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