Saturday, November 13, 2010

Afghanistan Through My Eyes - women warriors

I get very frustrated at times when talking to people about the soldier behind the uniform. People want to bring in their beliefs. It doesn't matter to me what their beliefs are. It matters to me what the person who puts on the uniforms belief is. What are they fighting for?

They are fighting for us. Listen, hear what they say....they are fighing for our freedom. They are fighting for their freedom as American's.


It's not that hard to understand. Women in Marine divisions are going to the front and fighting because they believe all women are created equal. They are fighting in combat on the front line for close does it have to get before you believe?

Friday, November 12, 2010

Veteran's Chapter - Katie Couric

Friday in NYC. What a great place, what an exhausting place.
I haven't spotted any more soldiers in uniform, but I'm on the lookout.

Things are going to start to get into full throttle when I get back to JAX. No sense waiting and sitting on my hands.

I am very interested in getting in touch with more Vet's and finding out how they're adjusting to civilian life. I'm especially intersted in the women.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Veteran's Chapter

Tonight I'm in NYC.

It was really sweet coming into the city over the Williamsburg Bridge in my taxi and seeing the Empire State Building all lit up in Red White and Blue in honor of Veteran's Day.

It is a glorious night. On the radio the newscaster was talking about the Veteran's Day Parade on Fifth Avenue. That must have been a wonderful site. My taxi pulled around and dropped me off at the corner of Mulberry and Canal and there were three marines in their dress blues waiting to take my cab for a night on the town.

There is nothing more handsome to this girl than a soldier in uniform. YEOW...

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Veteran's Chapter

Tomorrow is a great day...Veteran's Day.
Make sure you thank all the Veteran's you meet for fighting for your freedom. If you can take part in a Veteran's Day Ceremony. There is nothing more moving.

Veteran's Day isn't about politics and shame on those who bring that in. It's about honoring the soldiers, the men and women who put on that uniform and do unspeakable things and witness horrors for a belief. It's about honor and respect for all the soldiers who didn't come home.

I can't wait to go to Afghanistan and give every soldier I meet a big 'MOM' hug. It's not much, but it's something I can do to let them know that me, a regular gal thinks about them everyday and thinks so much about them I'm putting myself on a plane and going to them. That's how much they mean to me. I want them all to come back and live lives doing something they love, because they can, because they're free to do so.

And you don't have to wait for Veteran's Day to say thank you to a Veteran, you can do it everytime you meet one.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Afghanistan Through My Eyes - red tape

I sent another email to Gabriel today telling him I hate waiting, but I will wait and I'm not complaining, but what if it gets to be two weeks before I go and there's no email from ISAF?

What prompted this was the fact that I made the appointment to get my innoculations. NINE shots plus two series, one of two and one of three. The latter is for rabies, which I am not going to get. It is discretionary and costs $900.00! It is so expensive being a every way, clothing, inoculations, life.

I don't like getting shots. My father was a pediatrician and he used to give my brothers and me our shots at home. You would think that would be a nice thing, but my Daddy'O was a terrible shot giver. The only person he gave shots too were us! We longed to go to the office and get our shots from the nurses who gave hundreds a week.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Veteran's Chapter - Chaplin James D. Johnson

Today I got the December issue of Vietnam Magazine. It is always filled with interesting articles. You'd think after over 30 years there wouldn't be much to say on the subject. Wrong.

It's full of everyday men who were hero's everyday in the war.

This months article on James D. Johnson and the war that rages on inside of him was enlightening. James was a chaplain with the 3rd Battalion, 60th Infantry, 9th Infantry Division for nearly a year beginning in July 1967 through the Tet Offensive. He just wrote a new book: Combat Trauma: A personal Look at Long-Term Consequences. Johnson and 15 of his comrades share their most intimate experiences of the intense combat they witnessed in Vietnam.

We don't think about the Chaplains that for the most part see the death and excruciating injury and pain of the war. He talks about how hard it is for Vets to share their experiences. Some people won't be able to finish the book. He doesn't want to be judgmental, but sometimes he thinks, he lived this and you can't even read about it.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Veteran's Chapter - women warriors

I've noticed that with Veterans Day fast approaching, Veterans have been in the news a lot. I am glad to hear about it.

This morning on NPR they did a story about female Vets. It's a sad situation. There are so many Vets who are homeless and need help, but a female Vet doesn't find help as easily. When she goes to clothing banks for Vets, it's all men's clothes. When she walks into a VA hospital she's asked if she's there for her husband. There are no images of women as Vets and VA care is basically designed around men, only 1/3 of the Veteran's Hospitals do gender specific exams!

During the Vietnam war 3% of Veterans were women now it's 15% on active duty. But here's the real story...1 in 5 women in service are harrassed or raped.

This was from last year's Veterans Day. I hope this years dedication includes women.