The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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Troops, elected officials deserve more respect

I am a proud veteran of the 307th Engineering Battalion, 82nd Airborne Division, U.S. Army and my heart is saddened by the reactions of my fellow Americans. While serving, my prayers of peace were answered and I did not participate in any conflicts, struggles or wars. Unfortunately, my Airborne brothers, many whom I have never met, along with other military units are engaged in a conflict with Iraq. There is not a single soldier who prays for war, but we volunteer to obey our commander in chief, to protect our family, friends, and loved ones, and we value the support of the American population dearly. Unfortunately, my brothers are not seeing that support from many of our civilians. There are antiwar protests and people burning Old Glory in the name of peace.
People are being arrested for violent crimes and calling it supporting our troops. Protesters are disrupting traffic, turning over vehicles and blocking bridges, not allowing commuters to go home and be with their families. Those are not the actions of a population that is trying to support my brothers; those are actions of terrorists. I do not care what some high ranking actor believes; we are not in Iraq to seize oil. We are there to prevent the murder of innocent people, both Iraqi and American. Contrary to popular belief, the highest ranking soldier is our elected president. Supporting our military means that you support every soldier, from the lowest ranking Private to the highest ranking General.
I’m not asking you to believe in war because I personally do not. What I am asking is that our civilian population respect, not agree with, the decisions of our elected officials. They are the ones who receive the intelligence briefings from the CIA and the FBI. They are the ones who we have entrusted as a nation to lead and represent us.
So I beg of you, please support our troops in a respectful way. Send care packages and letters to the Middle East, fly Old Glory high, cover the U.S. with yellow ribbons, and please, please pray for my brothers to return home safely.
Benjamin Bequette
Class of 2005

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