Jewish World Review
Nov. 9, 2009/ 22 Mar-Cheshvan 5770
For Veterans Day Real Troop Support
Ah, Veterans Day is upon us. What better time to show our support for our men
and women in uniform?
But have we really been supporting
thank them when we see them at the airport.
parades and Veterans Day events to show our appreciation.
the Department of Veterans Affairs, nearly 42 million American men and women
have served during wartime.
million died while serving. Nearly 1.5 million were wounded.
more than 5,200 have died in Iraq and Afghanistan. Nearly 36,000 have been
wounded many have debilitating injuries that have changed their lives
debate the rightness or wrongness of various engagements, but we know that
freedom comes at a steep price and we honor those who have secured it for
But are we really supporting the
peak of World War II, American defense spending was 42 percent of our gross
those who served as well as those who stayed home needed to unite and
defense spending is around 3 percent of GDP. The wars in Iraq and Afghanistan
have required little or no sacrifice from most.
paid higher taxes to fund the wars our government continues to borrow the
money for that.
needed to buy war bonds or work long hours at a factory to produce tanks and
given up vacations, new cars, gasoline, meat, sugar and the hundreds of other
items that were rationed during World War II.
done so for a simple reason: Our support of the troops has not been a matter of
need, but a matter of choice.
our goodwill and appreciation, the fact is this: Many have chosen to not
support the troops much at all.
As you read
this, thousands of soldiers are serving in hostile conditions. Some will be
badly wounded some won't make it home.
want our pity, to be sure. They are trained warriors. They volunteered to
could use a little support and we don't have to sacrifice much to provide
are many small things people can do that can make a world of difference,"
says Jerry Newberry, director of communications for the Veterans of Foreign
assisting the family of a service member who has been deployed.
members go through a long period of wondering, worrying and waiting," says
Newberry. "But they still need to deal with the car breaking down, a child
getting sick, a death in the family. If you know of such families, reach out to
Or write an
e-mail. The troops particularly those recuperating in military hospitals
love receiving e-mails (www.ourmilitary.mil),
letters and care packages.
Your local Veterans Affairs office, VFW and other legitimate organizations are
in need of volunteers.
toy drive for children of deployed soldiers. Support the Marine Corps Toys for
Tots program. Provide gift cards to troops through aafes.com.
money. You can give to a variety of needed services for military members or
support the Red Cross to provide basic necessities to service members in
Just go to vfw.org and click on
"Donate" or "Troop Support."
Veterans Day is upon us. What better time to offer real support to our men and women
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© 2009, Tom Purcell