This Memorial Day, we have a special debt, as a nation. We honor our war dead from the Revolutionary War through the Civil War, to World War I, though no veterans of those wars are still with us. Those with direct memories of World War II are quickly dwindling, and will soon be no more than a memory and pages in history. The Vietnam war dead finally have the respect they were never given in life, despite earning it with every drop of their hallowed blood. But we've never properly given honors to those who died in the longest war our nation has ever fought.
The "Global War on Terror" has had America's armed forces continuously engaged since 2003. I remember the day when President George W. Bush announced the war's beginning. Many Gen-Xers joined the military to fight in this war, and many are still fighting it 15 years later. Some have left the service, dealing with the same challenges of PTSD, physical injuries and nightmares as their predecessors in Vietnam, Korea, and two World Wars. Nearly 7,000 have given their lives in the latest war, which still rages in places like Afghanistan and Syria.
That puts the war dead in this latest war above every other war America has fought, since the Civil War and the big wars in the 20th century. Our immense technological lead in military equipment, battlefield medicine, and air power has made the United States' longest war almost forgettable in terms of the number of dead.
It's time they had their proper honor.
This Memorial Day, spend a few minutes on the "GWOT Memorial Foundation" web page. There they have some "conversation starters" you can download for social media. If Thanksgiving Day is okay for the Obama Administration (and its successors outside the government) to suggest conversation starters about health care, then Memorial Day is all the more proper to discuss the war still being fought, and lives still being lost, in places thousands of miles from home.
Watch this video with your family.
Then give to the GWOT Memorial Foundation. For the cost of a pack of hot dogs or a six pack of beer, you can help the effort for our nation to honor those who can't join us this Memorial Day. They'd want you to have a burger or a beer in their memory, and I bet they'd smile to see their memories honored permanently alongside their peers who sacrificed for our liberty.
Happy Memorial Day.