Thank you, Rich, for a true and wonderful column. We speak often of the “greatest generation,” and they do deserve all their many accolades, but in my year in Iraq I saw that our nation — even dominated as it is by a self-indulgent popular culture — still raises great generations. Men on the line in Iraq and Afghanistan are typically twice volunteers, once to serve and once more to serve in combat arms. They do it with courage and professionalism that has to be seen to be believed, and they toil in near-total obscurity, with their deeds known only within the “band of brothers” and in the small military communities so sadly walled off from the rest of America.
To paraphrase a great moment of a great movie, those are the men we want on that wall, the men we need on that wall.