In the centuries since our nation’s birth and indeed throughout the history of man it has always been true that warriors have stood on the battlefield defending the good against the evil. They are the vanguard and their place is at the point of the spear.
It is not that evil and its operational arm – terrorism didn’t exist on September 10th or was born on 9-11. No, evil and terror has existed alongside good since the Lord cast Lucifer out of Heaven. So too since biblical times has the warrior – not limited to soldiers in armies defended his country, his family and his beliefs against men intent on their destruction.
"Men sleep peacefully in their beds at night
because rough men stand ready
to do violence on their behalf."
When our nation recovered from the sucker punch of September 11th we turned to our valiant warriors to defend our homeland and neutralize our enemies on foreign soil. That is a focus on our most vital resource, our men and women in our nation’s military and law enforcement. Yes, we have increased our intelligence capabilities but even when we develop new software or hardware in this pursuit it is the man behind the computer screen or equipment that helps stop the threat. We have been successful both domestically and internationally in our war against terror. From plotters, bombers, Al Qaeda hardcore terrorists in Iraq from mountainous caves in Afghanistan to wherever they hide or seek refuge, our warriors have taken into custody where possible and killed when necessary the enemies against the state or terrorists/criminals within our borders.
It has not been easy. It has come at a cost of our most valuable resource, those national treasures, brave men and women warriors we hold so dear and who stand watch over us against the evil that lurks in the night.
When Osama Bin Laden was finally hunted down and killed, the war did not end. The same operational unit that achieved such stunning success in Pakistan against the evil that was OBL would later lose many operators in the mountains of Afghanistan and yet, they press on still, their mission not over.
After all, it is the boots on the ground regardless of where the battlefield lays that achieves success. It was not a Predator drone that brought justice to Hussein or Bin Laden in was a man in uniform.
Understanding that it is the man, not the computer or hardware, and we oftentimes forget this important point, that will continue our quest against terrorism. In order to be as safe and efficient as possible it is their training, equipment and support that will seek out and stop the threats against us. It is the soldier and policeman not the general or politician who we will call on again and again to protect us.
Nothing is possible if we are not safe and in order for safety to exist we must recruit, train, support and retain those warriors who have so valiantly stepped up and protected us. No halfhearted lip-service will suffice.
No, evil did exist before 9-11 but on that day we saw our nation’s finest in police uniforms and fireman’s boots and call-out gear rush into a maelstrom for us. In the times since when our nation has called our Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, Coast Guard and Marines to enter the fray they have done so without second thought and at tremendous sacrifice.
We are indebted. We owe. The small price is to hold the memories of the fallen dear and to prize our warriors and give them everything they need to continue to watch over us – in cities near and countries far.
Our greatest asset is our people and the nation for which we stand – unity against the evil that wishes us ill.
This column is dedicated to the fallen – our brave and valiant warriors in the military and law enforcement. God Bless them all!