Wednesday, February 08, 2006

A little coffee and pretending


Today I woke up a little earlier then usual and upon going outside realized that it was a beautiful day. The weather has been rainy and cold lately but I awoke to warmth and sunshine. I decided to take advantage of the nice day so I retreated to my room to make a pot of coffee and grab some breakfast. Once these items were in hand I headed back outside to eat and drink under the sun. As I sat there a friend came out and joined me. We sat in the front of our barracks which lies 20 feet behind 12 foot tall concrete barriers. The barrier we guess is to keep out bombs and what not, I guess we aren’t really sure. Any rate, the barrier allowed us to shut off the outside world and pretend for a while. I hiked up my shorts and felt like I was on the beach getting some sun. My friend was thinking about water-skiing on a lake. Personally it was the best morning so far for me on this deployment. I was able to spend an hour and a half outside just sitting talking. I remembered the vacation I took to California after my last deployment and the fun I had there with friends on and around the beach. This day felt the same to me and I was gladly enjoying the opportunity to pretend.

Now for the fundamental truth that lies behind my morning spent in denial.

No amount of pretending can change what lies behind the barrier around my barracks. Just twenty feet past where I was sitting this morning lies a seemingly endless view of an Iraqi landscape, ever boring that it is. There is still conflict, death, and evil out there try that we may to ignore it. Ignoring this truth for a morning is fine for soldiers but when people ignore it in general it is a bad thing.

People who choose to live in America and enjoy their freedom without recognizing what it takes to have freedom fail to realize the incredible price that has been paid for them to do so.

Norman Podhoretz wrote an article a year or so ago about what he feels is WW IV and what led up to it (WWIII being the Cold War). WW IV is the war on terrorism and is what he feels is going on in Iraq and Afghanistan among other places right now. What led up to WW IV was the oversight by many American leaders of terrorist acts in the past: the Beirut marine barracks bombings, kidnappings by terrorists during the Reagan administration, and the World Trade Centers bombing in 1993 just to name a few. Conservatives and liberal leaders alike overlooked terrorism in the past. What they chose to ignore stewed into the much larger problem that we are dealing with now on a massive scale. Their inability to see the real threat that terrorists posed to the world has led to deaths that might have been avoidable had some action been taken earlier.

We haven’t been able to in the past nor can we now pretend that terrorism will go away on it’s own. It is a massive problem that must be dealt with now and if not dealt with will inevitably endanger the very freedom that we enjoy as Americans and want others across the globe to enjoy. We must face terrorism as a nation and convince those who don’t see it for the real problem that it is to do the same. Pretending that things will work themselves out on their own will not work. Pretending that terrorism isn’t that big of a deal wont work. Pretending that if America just pulled out of Iraq then terrorist acts against America would cease wont work. We have a problem that must be taken care of. Just as we went to fight against Nazis 60 years ago to liberate nations from tyranny we must do the same now and stick with it until the job is finished. Despite what people like Arianna Huffington would have you believe, the parallels between WW IV and WW II are valid. We are at the same time trying to liberate a people from tyranny while at the same time ensuring the security of the freedom we enjoy in America. Terrorism has threatened our security from the Carter administration on and nothing has been done about it until now. We can no longer pretend we are at the beach while we are sitting in the middle of the desert.

I wish I was lounging on the beach with a hula dancer and a beer but I remember a saying that goes something like “Try wishing in one hand and doing something in the other ;) and see which one fills up first.” (My grandma reads this blog so I am trying to keep it clean.)

The pic is of my barracks and the barriers in front of it.

13 comments:

Melinda said...

Your grandma is very proud of you, I'm sure, even if you have a potty mouth once in awhile. :)

A lot to think about with this one.

David M said...

You wrote: People who choose to live in America and enjoy their freedom without recognizing what it takes to have freedom fail to realize the incredible price that has been paid for them to do so.

Even worse are those that want all of the freedoms and rights but have no sense that at some point they must also be willing to pay for these freedoms. You have choosen to be one of those men on teh walls that protect and defend us, but for many American's they choose to be nothing but theives at the table, eating their fill and running out when the bill comes.

Thank you for your service to our country.

David M said...

A correction if you will.

What I should have said was 'Even worse are those that want all of the freedoms and rights but have the decision that the time comes to pay for those freedoms, they won't.'

Gypsy said...

t.f., good to see you again. I know that saying of yours at the end of your post. :) It's a real waste to me that in the hustle and bustle of life people don't take the time to really appreciate the little things in life, all of the things you serve to protect. Every time I see a pretty blue sky, the bright sun, hear a child's laughter...heck even the rain, I think of all of you so far away that would give anything to be home to appreciate them.

I truly give thanks for men like you who stand the watch so people like me can enjoy a safe and peaceful day.

You are right, we must stay the course for there is a bigger picture of destruction of our freedoms and our ways of life if we do not. In their hatred of the President and his steadfast leadership on the GWOT the far left would, I believe, rather see us destroyed than admit what we are doing is the right thing.

Anonymous said...

T. F. Boggs,
I can't believe you are just 24 years old. You obviously had parents who raised you well and encouraged you to study history and to keep up with world events. However, sitting on a beach with a hula girl and beer betrayed you. Yes, you are a 24 year old.
Seriously though, you couldn't be more right. Our hope is that people will bypass the MSM, go to the internet and blogs, learn the truth about terrorism and what we are in reality facing and rise up and act. We all need to step forward as you brave men in Iraq have. We have to face it head on because it will not just go away, as you said. I discussed your blog over the phone with a man 1200 miles away from me tonight and he is about convinced to get a computer and learn to use it so he can read your blog - -and others like you. I read your blogs to him, he thinks you are great, and his ideas on this war are changing because of you. Thanks T. F. Boggs for stepping forward for us all. Thanks for telling us about your morning of denial and your many days of facing harsh reality. You are a hero to us.
Annie

Anonymous said...

T. F. Boggs,
I can't believe you are just 24 years old. You obviously had parents who raised you well and encouraged you to study history and to keep up with world events. However, sitting on a beach with a hula girl and beer betrayed you. Yes, you are a 24 year old.
Seriously though, you couldn't be more right. Our hope is that people will bypass the MSM, go to the internet and blogs, learn the truth about terrorism and what we are in reality facing and rise up and act. We all need to step forward as you brave men in Iraq have. We have to face it head on because it will not just go away, as you said. I discussed your blog over the phone with a man 1200 miles away from me tonight and he is about convinced to get a computer and learn to use it so he can read your blog - -and others like you. I read your blogs to him, he thinks you are great, and his ideas on this war are changing because of you. Thanks T. F. Boggs for stepping forward for us all. Thanks for telling us about your morning of denial and your many days of facing harsh reality. You are a hero to us.
Annie

Anonymous said...

I'm sorry Boggs- - -I hit the button twice! But I have a song for the other commenters, especial david m. Another patriot giving of his money, time and talent. http://www.allrightrecords.com/id88.html Hope you all will enjoy it.
Annie with the nervous finger this morning.

t.h. snure said...

You certainly have a way with words young nephew. I'm sure your grandma is, as always, proud of you even if you let the words carry you away sometimes. I know she had to deal with a lot worse from her son, and she still talks to me.

Also Annie, thanks for pointing out the song, I really enjoyed it. I hope a lot of the heros (who aren't in our midst right now) get to hear it.

Todd

Anonymous said...

Thanks Todd, We emailed it to every military man we could, including T.F. Boggs. Wondering what grandma thought of the Hula girl and the beer, myself.
A

Anonymous said...

Hey Tim!
There is nothing horrible about a Hula dancer and a beer! I don't think your Grandma will mind. After all she didn't get to be a Grandma without learning something about life. I'm sure she understands.
Thanks for another great blog, Tim. There is a book by Col David Hunt called "They Just Don't get it" that talks about all the terrorist acts in this country throughout recent history. Very interesting, and really scary too! Keep saying it like it is Boggs! Oh, and Annie - - lay off the caffine. Must be the chickory, a new favorite here in the goat pasture.
Neatie

BUCK SARGENT said...

Great post, B-man. The way you pulled us in with a seemingly innocuous reflection in order to make a larger point reminded me of the man I consider the Master of post-9/11 observation, Bill Whittle. He's written a series of essays over the past two years he's published as "Silent America", and you can find most of them on his website:
http://www.ejectejecteject.com/

Check out his most recent essay "Tribes" as well as an older one "History" and be prepared to be blown away. This man is quite a talent.

Matt said...

Tim, writing "People who choose to live in America and enjoy their freedom without recognizing what it takes to have freedom fail to realize the incredible price that has been paid for them to do so" was dead on.

I think of many of the wasteful and narcissistic individuals in this country and that line refers very wholeheartedly to them. Sadly, they have no idea, nor do they necessarily care to know if it is ever brought to their attention.

David, your line "for many American's they choose to be nothing but theives at the table, eating their fill and running out when the bill comes" is spot on as well.

Again, I know too many individuals who can purport their opinions with ease, but not realize how they are negatively affecting the whole.

Thanks for your posting, Tim.

ellen g said...

My son is in Iraq and just introduced me to your blog. Thank you for saying what you are saying. I about choke when I watch the slant of the news each day. If it weren't for his observations- which align with yours, I would be more concerned about his welfare than I am. His Father and I are very proud of him - and all of you. Most Americans don't have a clue here anymore about the amount of freedom they have and about what it will really take to preserve the parts of it that are worth preserving. This is a genuine battle of good vs evil.