The Washington Post publishes an online column by William M. Arkin on National and Homeland Security called Early Warning.
He posted a column titled The Troops Also Need to Support the American People
These soldiers should be grateful that the American public, which by all polls overwhelmingly disapproves of the Iraq war and the President's handling of it, do still offer their support to them, and their respect.
Through every Abu Ghraib and Haditha, through every rape and murder, the American public has indulged those in uniform, accepting that the incidents were the product of bad apples or even of some administration or command order.
But it is the United States and instead this NBC report is just an ugly reminder of the price we pay for a mercenary - oops sorry, volunteer - force that thinks it is doing the dirty work.
The notion of dirty work is that, like laundry, it is something that has to be done but no one else wants to do it. But Iraq is not dirty work: it is not some necessary endeavor; the people just don't believe that anymore.
America needs to ponder what it is we really owe those in uniform. I don't believe America needs a draft though I imagine we'd be having a different discussion if we had one.
Hugh Hewitt, Black Five, Op-For, and PowerlineBlog have all commented on this better than I could, so I'll just say that the sentence in the final quote above says it all.
America needs to ponder what it is we really owe those in uniform...
If we have to think about what we really owe those in uniform, then we are in a lot more trouble than I thought. What a shame.