A Quakers letter to the Marines
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  1. #1

    A Quakers letter to the Marines

    A Quaker's Letter to Marines and Marine Snipers
    >
    > Below is a letter written by a Quaker lady familiar with Marines. It
    is a
    > very touching letter that makes me proud to be a Marine. The letter
    was
    > forwarded to me by Andy Tucker. Semper Fi, Bill
    >
    >
    > Dear Marines,
    >
    > I worked nights as a waitress, paying my way through college, in
    Honolulu
    > during the early 80s. Between work and school, I didn't have much
    time to
    > meet other people, and my family was thousands of miles away. Several

    > Marines frequented the bar, and one GySgt. of a Marine sniper
    platoon, Larry
    > Hatfield, sensed my shyness and invited me to participate in a lot of
    Marine
    > recreational events. We became close friends, but I could never
    understand
    > how a person could look through a scope and willingly kill another
    human
    > being. As a Quaker, the very concept of a sniper troubled me. I was
    raised
    > that killing is always wrong - period. I often told him, and the
    other guys
    > in the sniper platoon, my opinion on this. They usually remained
    silent on
    > the subject.
    >
    > As time went by, I lost contact with the Marines I knew from that
    sniper
    > platoon, but I was privileged, later on, to be invited to produce
    tours as a
    > volunteer (USO/AFE) for Marines on various bases overseas. Those of
    you who
    > have met USO/AFE entertainers know that we are nowhere near the
    combat
    > zones, and are in fact well-insulated from the horrors of war. We
    have fun
    > entertaining you; we love eating with you at the mess halls or
    sitting out
    > in the dirt and hearing your crazy jokes; we do our handshake tours
    of
    > hospitals and PR tents and feel good and then are lucky enough to go
    home
    > while you stay behind.
    >
    > But Iraq was different. For the first time I found myself weeping at
    night
    > after I came back from doing handshake tours. I couldn't adopt the
    USO maxim
    > of looking the Marines in the eyes and shaking hands on the hospital
    tours,
    > because there were teenage Marines with no hands and no eyes. A bomb
    at a
    > well while I was there on my last tour left 200 women and children
    dead or
    > injured at the hands of their own countrymen. The image of a Marine,
    badly
    > wounded, struggling to carry a small 3 yr old girl to safety is
    forever
    > seared in my mind.
    >
    > I wondered - a lot - about the kind of sacrifice that it takes for a
    person
    > to volunteer in the Corps and experience this kind of tragedy on a
    regular
    > basis.
    >
    > Iraqi women refugees would tell me, through translators, about how
    the
    > Kurdish women would throw their infants from trucks on their way to
    being
    > executed by Saddam Hussein in the hope that strangers would raise the

    > soon-to-be-orphaned children, and how often it was only the U.S.
    Marines and
    > military units who would help them get medical care if they did
    survive the
    > terrors inflicted upon them.
    >
    > This is what I have learned about war and the Marines: that I have
    never
    > seen a U.S. senator cry while telling me about holding a dying friend
    in his
    > arms, and there's precious few senators who come home from work
    missing a
    > leg or two.
    >
    > That I have never heard a U.S. congressman tell me what it's like to
    pass
    > out soccer balls and writing paper to children who have been denied
    an
    > education since birth.
    >
    > That I have never heard any politician or corporate leader describe
    to me,
    > as one Marine did after a show, that she wanted a better life for her
    child
    > back home but wanted better lives for the children of Iraq, too.
    >
    > Marines are living - and sometimes dying - for democracy, not just
    talking
    > about it for the CNN cameras. They do their jobs, and come home,
    quietly, to
    > go back to farming in Iowa or driving trucks in Kentucky, and, for
    the most
    > part, don't talk about it. And God knows we civilians don't get an
    accurate
    > picture back home of what is going on.
    >
    > I still think killing is wrong, but I have come to understand that
    sometimes
    > it is necessary and that lack of intervention, especially in
    humanitarian
    > missions in oppressed nations, is tantamount to pulling the trigger
    on
    > innocent civilians who only want what we want: a safe home for their
    > children and food on the table and the right to be who they are.
    >
    > I'm not naive enough to think that most of our political leaders go
    to war
    > for compassion (I think most of them want to protect corporate
    interests),
    > but I do believe, from knowing the Marines I have been lucky enough
    to know,
    > that Marines act from compassion, decency, and with hearts bigger
    than most
    > people will ever experience.
    >
    > I understand now that a sniper - or any Marine, in any job supporting
    the
    > ideals of the Corps - does what he or she does because the
    Constitution of
    > the United States is not some remote piece of paper; the idea of
    freedom is
    > real to a Marine.
    >
    > As one young lance corporal told me, as he guarded us during a show
    set-up
    > in a particularly volatile area (after our show had been cancelled
    the day
    > before because terrorists had blown up another 27 children nearby),
    "Don't
    > worry - we got your back."
    >
    > It shames me to think that I had to leave my country on these tours
    in order
    > to understand what precious gifts I have as an American, that every
    day,
    > somewhere in the world, a Marine is watching my back. I never
    considered
    > that a sniper, or any Marine, may be asked to kill in order to save
    innocent
    > lives but now I understand.
    >
    > So to all of you Marines out there, please accept this heartfelt
    thanks for
    > what you do. To the guys from the sniper platoon in Kaneohe - this is
    a late
    > apology for questioning you, and a thank you for what you have taught
    me,
    > but I hope some of you read this. In our American culture, we don't
    talk
    > much about being noble, decent, loyal and honorable. I have yet to
    meet a
    > Marine who did not possess all of those qualities. You are the big
    kids in
    > high school who didn't let the bullies hurt the little kids. If you
    are
    > reading this from Afghanistan or Iraq or Camp Lejeune; if you are
    reading
    > this from a V.A. facility; if you are reading this from your home,
    know
    > this: that what you do is important. When you are feeling weary and
    > discouraged, remember that there are people in the world living in
    freedom
    > because of you. Not only the refugees from war - but me, too.
    >
    > Sincerely, Laura Minor
    >


  2. #2
    This is an awsome letter Sgt. Tony. How do I get the link so I can mail it to my freinds, and family? I can give you my email add. if you can email it to me. Thanks!


  3. #3
    wow, Got something in my eye while reading that.To bad we will never see anything even close to this in the papers.


  4. #4
    Twitchell.... Just copy and paste...


  5. #5
    Thank's Mytcbra96. I'm kind of computer illiterate. KIND OF? Never mind, I am computer illiterate. Hehehe...

    Thank's again.


  6. #6

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