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thank you

These are the times that try menís souls. The summer soldier and the sunshine patriot will, in this crisis, shrink from the service of their country; but he that stands it now, deserves the love and thanks of man and woman.

I am going to repeat (if slightly modified) what I wrote last year for Veteran's Day.

In Defense of Freedom

vetday03.jpgI have always been appreciative of the military. Even back in my (near)liberal days, I never took the side of those who called members of our military killers or murderers. It always struck me as ironic that these people would gather by the hundreds to denounce a military action, completely oblivious to the fact that were in not for the men and women who have served this country since a military was first formed, they would not have that freedom to be standing there shouting their dissent.

No matter how much I have complained about this country, I always respected the fact that I have the right to complain.That's one of the things that makes the United States of America so great. You have the right to make an ass out of yourself in public. You have the right to hold up signs or shout slogans or sing songs at the front gate of the White House.

No matter how you feel about the War in Iraq, the war on terrorism, the war on drugs, the constitution, the pledge, our laws, our rules and regulations, you should take the time out to thank your lucky stars that our military has won for you the ability to say that you are against those things. You could be staring down the face of a dictatorship right now. You could be in a country ruled by fear, where torture is a daily occurence and people are stoned to death for speaking out.

You can sit in front of your thousand dollar computer on your comfortable chair, sipping your fresh brewed coffee and listening to your incredible collection of cds and bitch and moan all you want about how this country oppresses you.

The fact of the matter is, you are damn lucky to be living here. You are very fortunate to live in a place that affords you the freedom to be whatever you want to be, where you future is decided by your choices and actions alone.

I know where my freedom comes from. I know it comes from the blood of every soldier who ever battled in a war for this country. I know it comes from great loss and great tragedy. I know that from the Revolutionary war on up, many, many people have died or put themselves on the line so I can have the right to live my life in a free country.

I am forever thankful to those people. No matter how you feel about our president or his policies or any leader that came before him, you should be thankful, too. If not, you don't deserve the freedom that all those soldiers have afforded you.

Click this link. Show your thanks.

Thank you to all the veterans and current members of the armed forces. You are appreciated.

The following bloggers are veterans or are currently serving in the armed forces. Please stop by their sites today and say thank you.

Please see the comments for even more links to vet bloggers. The list got too long for me to keep up with - I had no idea that the blogosphere was such a hotbed of military action!

Also, check out the brand new MilBlogs - "Free Speech From Those Who Make it Happen." Damn straight.

Other vet/active duty bloggers:
Adam
Pietro
Jeremy
South Knox Bubba
Lionel
Deb
Sin City Cynic
James
Martin

Serenity
Mike
Sgt. Mom
OTB James
Jeff Quinton
Ocean Guy
John
Moore
(USN)
Jay Bagley
Dave
Left & Right
James
The Timekeeper - USN.
tacitus - Army.
John Cole - Army
nathan - USAF.
Blaster
Sgt. Hook
Sgt. Stryker
Lt Smash
Chief Wiggles
Kevin
Black Five
Pontifex
Dan
CG Hill
David
Denny
Rev. Sensing
Val
Joe
Dodd

Also, don't forget Front Line Voices: Letters from Iraq and Afghanistan

Of course, you should see today's Cox & Forkum.

Jeff has a list of bloggers who have Veterans Day posts.

(If you know of any others to add to this list, please leave their names and URLs in the comments)

TrackBack

Listed below are links to weblogs that reference thank you:

» VETERANS DAY LINKS from OUTSIDE THE BELTWAY
Blogosphere tributes to our veterans: Donald Sensing Michele Catalano Kathy Kinsley Joe Katzman Alex Knapp... [Read More]

» Veterans Day from Wizbang
Michele has a wonderful tribute up for Veterans Day as well as a roundup of sites covering Veterans Day. Th most famous recent veteran, Jessica Lynch, may be the subject of a distasteful tribute from one Larry Flynt. See The... [Read More]

» Veterans Day from Sheila Astray's Redheaded Ramblings
Not to miss: Donald Sensing's Veterans Day post. It brought tears to my eyes. Science fiction writer Robert A. Heinlein wrote the best definition of veterans that I have ever read. He was a medically-retired US Navy officer himself when... [Read More]

» fortes fortuna juvat from Drumwaster's Rants!
There isn't much more I could possibly say on Veterans Day. I can't imagine what soldiers go through, nor could I ever offer enough sympathy for those who die in defense of this country. It simply could not be enough... [Read More]

» Honor from Quiet Here
A few years ago today I was sitting in my Plant Biology 103 class with my friend, Matt. I asked him what his plans were for the day and he said that when he returned to his house he needed... [Read More]

» Honor from Quiet Here
A few years ago today I was sitting in my Plant Biology 103 class with my friend, Matt. I asked him what his plans were for the day and he said that when he returned to his house he needed... [Read More]

» Veterans Day from Backcountry Conservative
American Realpolitik, Bill Hobbs and Instapundit link to Donald Sensing. Hobbs also links to South Knox Bubba. Instapundit also links to a Sunday Observer column. Jason Trommetter has links to online Veterans Day Greeting Cards. A Small Victory has lin... [Read More]

» Thank You from Dean's World
You should see Michele's link roundup today. Including Reverend Sensing's message, which I linked earlier but which is worth linking again. Thank you. Again.... [Read More]

» Veteran's Day Links from Babalu Blog
Michele has a heartfelt thanks as well as good a compilation of links to blogs with homages for Veteran's Day. And, if you want to send thanks to our men and women serving overseas, click here. Dean also has a... [Read More]

» Veterans Day from The Accidental Jedi
This post will stay at the top of the page for the rest of the day, and I will be adding to it as the day goes on. James at Parkway Rest Stop Tiger Jen Dean Cox and Forkum Michele... [Read More]

» BLOG YIN AND YANG from The SmarterCop
It's a fact of life... there's the bad apples of the blogosphere, which nobody seems to want to wrest from Kevin's shoulders; and then there's the good ones. Are you surprised that there are so many veterans in the blogging... [Read More]

» Veteran's Day Blues from Snooze Button Dreams
It's Veteran's Day and I've had some serious blues going on. I usually do on this day. It's part nostalgia, part loss and maybe a little bit of self pity thrown in. Maybe a lot of that last one, actually. Anyway, I just read a wonderful post by Michele... [Read More]

» Thank You from dcthornton.com
Today is the 50th anniversary of Veterans Day. Take a moment to learn about its history. Also, pay a... [Read More]

» Veterans from Serenity's Journal
I've seen many comments around the blogosphere today about veterans which prompted this post: Let's not forget that a veteran is anyone who has served in the Armed Forces, men and women, war time and peace. Please extend your gratitude... [Read More]

» Many have come and gone, remember them all from Tiger: Raggin' & Rantin'
Michele has a listin' of all the Active Service/Veteran bloggers she knows about. Of course, she didn't list this guy:He blogs and he is currently the Post Adjutant of our local American Legion Post. I heard that the guy is... [Read More]

» Veterans Day from The Accidental Jedi
This post will stay at the top of the page for the rest of the day, and I will be adding to it as the day goes on. James at Parkway Rest Stop Tiger Jen Dean Cox and Forkum Michele... [Read More]

» MilBloggers and co from Inoperable Terran
Here's a list of active-duty and veteran bloggers, plus some other cool links (including today's Cox & Forkum, which I flaked out and missed on my rounds).... [Read More]

» Veterans Day from Creative Slips
Don't worry, I didn't forget, even if I did have a regular weekday schedule. Even then, it's right to honor [Read More]

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» Best of Veteran's Day from Captain's Quarters
In honor of my father (Korea), father-in-law (WWII, Korea, d. 1991), paternal uncles (WWII, Korea, peacetime), maternal uncles (Vietnam, peacetime), and cousins (peacetime, current), here are a few posts around the blogosphere that represent the best o... [Read More]

» Honor Thy Veteran from A Single Guy In The South
A number of folks have written about Veteran's Day today. As a former soldier, I'd like to say thanks to all who have expressed their gratitude to the many servicemembers who have blessed our great nation. It was my great... [Read More]

» Ghosts of War from DiVERSiONZ
I forgot to post anything for Veterans Day...I got too caught up in reading everyone else's fine tributes and memorials [Read More]

» Veterans Day from Left & Right
I wanted to leave my birthday message to my mom at the top of the blog for most of the day, but I also wanted to acknowledge the other important significance of November 11. On June 4, 1926, Congress declared... [Read More]

» Veterans Day from Left & Right
I wanted to leave my birthday message to my mom at the top of the blog for most of the day, but I also wanted to acknowledge the other important significance of November 11. On June 4, 1926, Congress declared... [Read More]

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Comments

On my way to work this morning, I heard on the radio news that someone in Sebastopol, CA, ran around late yesterday and filled 200 flag holders on the streets with concrete. These were to hold flags today in honor of Veteran's Day.

There is no limit to my contempt for people like that.

Finally found a link to the story. It was earlier, but I just heard it today.

Contempt doesn't even begin to describe it.

Thanks, michele!

Other vet/active duty bloggers:
The Timekeeper - USN.
tacitus - Army.
John Cole - Army
nathan - USAF.

Oh, and James, too. Can't believe I left him out.

Rob of Left & Right, US Navy Veteran

Me too (US Army vet)

I am a USAF veteran who is on blog comment active duty.

And I'm working today for the umpteenth Veteran's Day because architects are assholes.

Forgot John Moore (USN), too.

Oceanguy... CDR USN Retired
Thanks for compiling the list of vets

Very moving post Michele.

OTB James - Army. I'm quitting up now. :-)

USAF 1977-1997

USNR 1970-1976

Michele - Thank YOU very much.

Don't forget the Sin City Cynic!

James Martin
United States Marine Corps, 1994-2002.

Serenity

And myself.

My co-blogger Lionel at Across the Atlantic is a RAF veteran.

Add this one...South Knox Bubba

http://southknoxbubba.net/skblog/

No service here - but I'll add a heartfelt civilian salute and this tribute:

Michelle, may I copy your post to my archive sections? Due credits, the usual perks, to be referred to every Veteran's Day henceforth? It's truly beautiful. I wanted to simply cut and paste the whole thing and call it a front page, but I restricted myself to "fair comment."

Thanks for saying it so well, Michelle.

I'm honored and quite humbled to be among the list of heroes blogging. Thanks Michele, and thanks to all the veterans listed above.

And me - USAF

And me - Airborne!

Very well said, Michele.
Regardless of where any of us fall on the political spectrum, it's an incontrovertible fact that freedom is not free.

and me....USN, 1980-1985

My father & uncle and myself (USNR 1972-1978)

I'm a Navy vet.

Great post Michele. :)

Thanks for the beautiful posting Michele.

U.S. Navy Veteran
(Aerographer's Mate Second Class)

It's not your typical military post, but I did an entry on being an unackowledged military wife.
http://www.bethmauldin.com/archives/2003_11.html#000652

Enlisted - USMC
Officer - USN

You're right, Michele. I thank all of our soldiers and veterans, and apologize to them from the depths of my heart that they have been so sorely misused this past year, in both action and having their treatment and benefits cut. That's why I called my congressmen's offices today to complain about the shameful cuts.

Me too..er...three..uh...are we up to 11? 12?

USMC 2/84-12/92 6466/6477

Thanks, Michele, for the opportunity to says Thanks.

I believe that Neal from Random Nuclear Strikes is a USN vet, and Mark (same site) is an Air Force vet.

A very impressive list of veterans with weblogs.

Someone should tell Tom Tomorrow about this!

Here's his contact info.

Hey Finn,
Thanks, but no thanks, for that kind of support. Where have you been for the last 20 years?! Congress has been playing games with military personnel (pay and benefits) long before this war, because pork for their local voting public and increasing entitlements for people who may or may not deserve them is FAR more important.

Where were you when they yanked health care for retired military because Medicare should be good enough for these veterans?.... You loser!

I'm in that group too:

Mad Mikey
U.S. Navy veteran
Aviation Electronics Technician (AT)

Michele, thank you for posting your thoughts on Veterans Day. No matter how many people acknowledge veterans for their sacrifices, it's always nice to hear one more say thank you.

I am a part-time blogger and full-time reader of your blog. I've even commented a few times before this. Happy Veteran's Day to all of you out there! Thanks go especially to those who served in the 70's when we had to change into civies before we left base just so we wouldn't get beat up on the way home. It wasn't very popular or chic to be in the Corps then. Semper Fi
SGT USMC 1974-1978

And me.

Er...I'm a loser because I (a) acknowledge that there is a huge problem with U.S. service members & veterans being underpaid and undersupported, and (b), I actually try to do something about it? How does that equate with the level of vitriol you just aimed my way?

I don't want to start a flame war here - just noting one way in which others could support the troops.

Finn,
Ain't gonna play that game; you write:

"I thank all of our soldiers and veterans, and apologize to them from the depths of my heart that they have been so sorely misused this past year, in both action..."

Ask most current military personnel and I doubt they'd think that they've been misused. Did you write a letter last year to your congressman (We did have people in Afganistan don't forget; and there's nothing new about military personnel at the bottom of the budget food chain)?

If you've honestly had a change of heart about the "military", I apologize and congratulate you on your conversion... But I'm skeptical.

I agree with you, especially on Veteran's Day, let's take this discussion offline, or on your blog

Me, too. USN, back in the 70's.

i'm a former navy vet, if it matters...

Greeblie, you can't be a FORMER vet!

Once a vet, always a vet.

Go Navy.

Fly Navy!

John (P-3's 1967-1968)

I'm a USAF Vet. Here's my piece on the subject:

http://jameshudnall.com/archives/001523.html

My husband, John of Arrggghhh! is a retired disabled veteran, and even I am a veteran (but just from being in the Reserve - never served like John did!)

w00t! I'm a vet, US Army.

US Army - 1989-1996

USAR 1991-1997 (21st Gen Hosp - 307th POC)

ANGUS, 23 years
OEF in SA, PK, OM, QA

My blogfriend Tiger is a vet as well!

Me? I'm just a very grateful civilian!

--Denita TwoDragons
Associate Tender of the Fire

USAF 1982-1986

Andrew Olmsted of andrewolmsted.com.

Misused = being sent into two invasions with no clear plan or solid support, with injured soldiers having to wait far too long for treatment. That's what I mean by misuse. We wouldn't stand for it in a regular job, and it's darn well obscene for our soldiers. Now that I've actually had to explain a simple post, are we clear?

United States Air Force
1979-Present

Finn: No...being a Soldier, Sailor or Marine isn't a "regular job" and we all knew that upon taking the oath of enlistment.

The military/government is by no means perfect, but I personally found your little negative "dig" offensive and inappropriate on a thread that was simply trying to honor Veterans Day.

American servicemen/women certainly don't need a lesson from you on how they are being "misused".

How's that for clarity?

I'm a vet. Cpl, 704164144 S.African Defence Force,
back when we were still fighting the damned Kaiser.

USAF 1997-Present. ASV is a daily read.

Note to Finn: My only feeling of being misused is that I didn't get recalled to active duty so I could help kill the people and break the things of those who wish us so ill that they do things like 9/11. I have no illusions about what I did as a soldier. My job was to kill people and break things until the other guy wanted to stop and talk about it. Kind of a family business, too, there being three artillerymen in a row in my family. Spare me your piously wrapped bile.

Sorry to be so late - I was too busy doing my own Veteran's Day posts over at Argghhh that I missed my daily visit here.

Shout out to all my fellow vets and those who love us!

Cheers,

John of Argghhh!

Hey don't forget me. I had a blog but the guy who owned the bandwidth(he gave me a website for Christmas) shut me down.

By the time I finish this tour...22 years.

Disabled Woman Vet, USN... and I blog for peace.
:)

I just want to thank all who serve this country, without your sacrafice, this would not have be able to happen, Our continued freedom!