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Sgt Grit American Courage Newsletter - October 19, 2001

'We will not waiver,
we will not tire,
we will not falter,
and we will not fail.' Pres. GWBush

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...OR... email me at I have added several new items to the web page and will add new items every newsletter. You will find ball caps, flag decals, and bracelets with victims names from the attacks of 9.11.01. Keep the faith, stay strong and focused, we will need it to be successful. Now let's get to to the reason you opened this email.

Courage is rightly esteemed the first of human qualities because it's the quality which guarantees all others. Winston Churchill


"Courage is what happened when the New York firefighters and policemen ran into the burning World Trade Center; cowardice is what set it aflame." --Gregg Easterbrook

"Tyranny, like hell, is not easily conquered; yet we have this consolation with us, that the harder the conflict, the more glorious the triumphs. What we obtain too cheap, we esteem too lightly: 'Tis dearness only that gives every thing its value. Heaven knows how to put a proper price upon its goods; and it would be strange indeed, if so celestial an article as freedom should not be highly rated." --Thomas Paine

brothers, I have been recalled , I am on duty somewhere in the Indian Ocean. keep the US going, semper fi

Check out these pages: Red Skelton's Pledge of Allegiance

As I sit here downstairs in my basement I am thinking about things that I never imagined I would think. My seven month old son is sleeping upstairs ,my six year old is at school and her sister is in preschool. Currently I am a member of the National Guard and going on airport security next month. Yes,Iam a former Marine(82-86). Anyway, my thoughts since 9-11-01 have been guarded and kept to myself. As I type this out you may know why. The prospect of going to serve my country does not really bother me . Those of us who serve should know that it is not all about getting your college paid for. I am ready and willing to go to the wall for what we as Americans stand for, good or bad. My feeling about all of this is that we need to ferret out all of these groups and exterminate every last one of them. We must close with and destroy them. No quarter given, none taken. These people are willing to kill my wife and kids just because they are American and that they live in the "decadent west". In light of this my feelings to how we treat those who oppose has changed. Being clueless in my young and old age, I always felt that you only went after those who wear a uniform or raise a weapon at you. Things have now changed for me. I hate to say this but we must steel ourselves to the knowledge that these people and their supporters have no regard for us or our families, so in turn we give none to theirs. Anyone who supports them must be destroyed. Those who breed their kids must be taken out. ;Leave their bones to bleach in the sun for all to see. They want"jihad",Let them have it. The full measure of our wrath. Pursue them as Grant did Lee after the Wilderness. Leave their land as Sherman left South Carolina. Salt their earth and destroy their homes. I am a quiet man and I would not even be able to intimidate Mr. Rogers. These thoughts do bother me. But for as long as these extremists talk the way they do, and are willing to carry out this war we must do all things necessary to crush them and all who think like them. This is not directed at those who live honest and decent lives under whatever religion they practice, just to those who use their religion to cover for their bloodthirsty agenda. If my thoughts are wrong ,so be it. Looking upon my wife and kids, my friends and neighbors I feel that I will sacrifice my life and future so that all of them may live a full life. There is no guarantee that I will be called to do anymore that walk around the airport in uniform, but if called I am steeling myself everyday to be as ready to give my full measure as much as these animals are willing to die for those groups they follow. Steven Petree

AGE OF REASONING Sgt Grit, I subscribed about 2 months ago and have found your newsletter adds a few moments of reflection for me. Each time I read the stories and anecdotes, I have to stop and reflect for a while, then I go outside (central Pa.) and make sure the flag pole is still straight and the line in tight. In July of this year, my wife and I took our 3 kids to DC to see the monuments and memorials. My kids think I'm a little strange because of the subtle application of Marine history applied to various lessons in life. In DC, They marveled at the Iwo Jima Memorial and wondered why some people cried at the Vietnam Wall. When we got to the Korean War Memorial, we took a picture of the kids at the wall where it reads, "FREEDOM IS NOT FREE". After the picture, I told them that someday they will know what that means. They gave me their typical head tilted look of confusion similar to the one my dog, AL (named after a Commandant) gives me when I tell him to assault the beach. On September 11th, my 7 year old daughter (two younger brothers, 4 and 9 months) and I were watching the news of the terrorist attacks. She asked me if we were in a war and I said, "yes, someone attacked our freedom". I guess through the my anger, my dialogue, and the days events, she figured out what I meant months before. That night when I tucked her in for the night (hit the rack), she told me so. She said, "Daddy, I know what it means on that picture." I asked her to explain and she told me, "If you want to be free, you have to fight for it." Close enough for a 7 year old that just may have reached the age of reasoning. I kissed her good night and told her that in the morning, I'll let you move on to the 2nd phase with the other privates. With the tilted head look, she said, "OK, goodnight". SEMPER FI Chris Fishel, Sgt, 86-91 G, 2/5, 1st Mar Div

Sgt Grit. Thanks for a great letter about the terrorist situation. I can only encourage all Americans to seriously consider our President's words; "You are with us, or you are with the terrorists". What can be more succinct? More accurate? This applies in this country as well as to other countries. Our oath in service - "All enemies foreign and domestic" So, about 75 people showed up in Washington DC to protest our war on terrorism. UC Berkley (Suprise?) is protesting ... I would relish telling my grandsons (now 6-7) that I put them down and why. How can intelligent (?), free people watch what has gone on in Bosnia, Kuwait, Iraq, Yugoslavia, Afghanistan, Israel, and now, New York City... and not be reviled? Moved to action? I am disgusted with our fat, lazy populace, our media and anchorwo/men, and our liberal educators, and politicians. Ready on the Left!, Ready on the Right! Ready on the firing line! Targets! Scott McClellan MSgt USMC Ret

Former President Ronald Reagan: "A message to terrorists everywhere; you can run, but you can't hide...If you counted on America to be passive, you counted wrong."

"I do think it's important to recognize that very intelligent, very sane people can still think according to very different...'paradigms,' but most of the people who use the word 'paradigm' seem like they need a vigorous enema." --Jonah Goldberg

After pleas from the Bush administration, Fox News, MSNBC, ABC, CBS and NBC have agreed not to act as media mouthpieces for al Qaida and Osama bin Laden. However, CNN continues to air messages from the enemy -- most recently a message from bin Laden spokesman Suleiman Abu Gheith. Thus, we bestow upon CNN the dubious distinction of Operation Enduring Freedom's infamous "alCoran News Network" award. The Federalist [] I for one will not watch CNN anymore, Sgt Grit

Q: How do you play Taliban bingo? A: B-52...F-16...B-1... Q: What is the Taliban's national bird? A: Duck Kelly S.

Hello Sir, I just want to tell you how wonderful it is to read these stories. My husband proudly served in the CORPS in Desert Storm and left a CPL . He later left and joined the Yonkers Fire Dept . No job fulfilled him like the Marines did he then joined the MARINE RESERVES. This weekend he is being promoted to SGT we are so proud of him. I find myself (daily) looking at the list of activated and deployed waiting for the day of his calling. We have 4 wonderful children that totally support him. I hope the American people understand the personal sacrifices the service men and families are making for our Freedom. I also hope that it is a Marine who comes out with the heads of these EVIL DOERS as GEORGE W would say. ONCE A MARINE ALWAYS A MARINE SEMPER FI God Bless America

"Only lay down true principles, and adhere to them inflexibly. Do not be frightened into their surrender by the alarms of the timid, or the croakings of wealth against the ascendancy of the people....The true foundation of republican government is the equal right of every citizen, in his person and property, and in their management. Try by this, as a tally, every provision of our Constitution, and see if it hangs directly on the will of the people...." --Thomas Jefferson

Whoever does not have the stomach for this fight, let him leave. Give him money to speed his departure since we wish not to die in that man's company. Whoever lives past today & comes home safely will rouse himself every year on this day, show his neighbor his scars, and tell embellished stories of all their great feats of battle. These stories will teach his son and from this day, until the end of the world, we shall be remembered. We few, we happy, we band of brothers; for whoever shed his blood with me shall be my brother. And those men afraid to go will think themselves lesser men as they hear of how we fought and died together. Shakespeare Henry V: Paul W. Chaney, USMC

"Blessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked or stand in the way of sinners or sit in the seat of mockers." (Psalm 1:1)

"For mere vengeance I would do nothing. This nation is too great to look for mere revenge. But for the security of the future I would do everything." --James A. Garfield .............................................. After a over a quarter-century, I find myself back in a classroom situation, and...nothing (save the names) has changed -- the University of Arizona in 2001 might as well be Berkley in 1971, for the whiners and the cowards and the 'peace-at-any-price' spoiled little twits whining in the school newspaper. To say I was surprised when the following, which I wrote in high dudgeon, was actually published, is an understatement: I have read, with increasing disgust and revulsion, the callow ramblings submitted since the attacks on the United States, and have listened to the inane 'commentary' of the media. Hello, people, this is not 'a tragedy', this is not a 'disaster', this is AN ACT OF WAR...wake up and smell the charred flesh. For those who cower in corners, willing to sacrifice 'some' freedom for safety, read Ben Franklin on the subject. For those who rejoiced as our military was gutted for 'entitlement' programs, and looked down their noses at those 'rough men' who chose to serve, read George Orwell on that subject. For those who doubt this country and its freedoms are not worth the cost of their precious little lives, go elsewhere -- anywhere -- and bear the contempt of over two centuries of your betters. Over three decades ago, for eight weeks, a chorus of ninety-six voices recited: "I am a United States Marine Corps Recruit. I serve in the forces that Guard my country and its way of life. I am prepared to give my life in its defense." Not anxious, not eager, but if necessary, prepared. As a sergeant of Marines in combat, I made decisions that determined whether other men lived or died. Knowing this, they did not question, they did not hesitate, they went. And yes, some of them did die. Honorably, and for a cause in which they believed. Assorted wounds and one major coronary failed to keep me from the recruiter, if there was some use for one of the 'Old Breed' who could free up a young, healthy Marine for the fight. I had to stand in line behind Marines thirty years my senior, who still believed America was worth fighting -- if need be, dying -- for. Obviously, the blood has thinned in succeeding generations. Courage, integrity and patriotism have become politically incorrect in this land of plenty. Perhaps your generation deserves to lose the blessings that once ennobled this land -- but not on my watch. The terrorists -- at least by their lights -- died honorably. They had the courage of their convictions, and had the will to fight and die for them. I pity an America without the will or moral fiber to do the same. ------------------------- D. "Duke" Schechter Sergeant of Marines An armed man is a citizen; a disarmed man, a subject. Not surprisingly, there was only one printed response...from another 'former military' (albeit of a lesser service), agreeing...apparently, that was the quota for the 'good guys'. Now, here's something to think about: If, instead of the Pentagon, those maggots had hit, say The Wall, or (perish forbid) the Iwo Jima Memorial, what would the body count be now? -------------------------- 'Duke' USMC 66-70 America will remain the Land of the Free only so long as it remains the Home of the Brave. ............................................................ Hey Sarge, Your newsletter with all the replies give me faith that Americans are alive and ready to kick ass! I spent 2 tours in Vietnam and was proud I could do my part for my country and my CORPS. I would go now if I could. If I can quote one of your bumper stickers; "Not as lean, not as mean, but still a MARINE." My heart is full of pain, sorrow, and a lot of hate for 9-11-01 and I want revenge for our fallen brothers and sisters. God bless America, God bless our CORPS, and God bless all you MARINES both active and in-active. Keep those flags of our great country flying forever...... Sgt. Gary E. Best USMC in-active ................................................. I will never look at a firefighter the same way again. Their bravery has become part of our collective national legacy. Their bravery dignifies us all. The Reverend Bill Hybels ............................................... Now hear this... As a good American is supposed to do, I'm flying to San Diego this next week. As a good Marine is supposed to do, destination MCRD. A young boot asked me to be present for his graduation and the mission will be accomplished. All Marine vets should be swamping the HQMC website to demand, not ask, to be recalled to give the raghead terrorists a lesson in superior Marine firepower! Semper Fi forever! Buck Fowler, Mardet Hancock 74-75 ............................................... A British View of the US / Bin Laden Affair by Andrew Sullivan in the London Times No eloquence can match the impact of their evil. Americans' critical weakness in the past two decades has been their reluctance to shed blood for their goals. They believed they could construct a huge military and never have it fight real wars and suffer real casualties. They thought they could alter history and advance their interests from the air alone. With the exception of the Gulf War, which they hesitated to finish, they have shrunk from the fight. When the current enemy struck again and again throughout the 1990s, Bill Clinton responded without real credibility, struck back without real endurance, enraged the terrorists without truly hurting them. We are now living with the consequences of his appeasement, and of his refusal to challenge Americans beyond what the polls said they already wanted to do. Whoever launched this war on Americans has now accomplished the task Clinton didn't dare embark on. America has been bloodied as it has never been bloodied before. I would be a fool to predict what happens next. But it is clear that Bush will not do a Clinton. This will not be a surgical strike. It will not be a gesture. It may not even begin in earnest soon. But it will be deadly serious. It is clear that there is no way that the United States can achieve its goals without the cooperation of many other states - an alliance as deep and as broad as that which won the Gulf War. It is also clear that this cannot be done by airpower alone. As in 1941, the neglect of the military under Bill Clinton and the parsimony of its financing even under Bush must now not merely be ended but reversed. We may see the biggest defense buildup since the early 1980s - and not just in weaponry, but in manpower. It is also quite clear that the U.S. military presence in the Middle East must be ramped up exponentially, its intelligence overhauled, its vigilance heightened exponentially. In some ways, Bush has already assembled the ideal team for such a task: Powell for the diplomatic dance, Rumsfeld for the deep reforms he will now have the opportunity to enact, Cheney as his most trusted aide in what has become to all intents and purposes a war cabinet. The terrorists have done the rest. The middle part of the country - the great red zone that voted for Bush - is clearly ready for war. The decadent Left in its enclaves on the coasts is not dead - and may well mount what amounts to a fifth column. But by striking at the heart of New York City, the terrorists ensured! that at least one deep segment of the country ill-disposed toward a new president is now the most passionate in his defense. Anyone who has ever tried to get one over on a New Yorker knows what I mean. The demons who started this have no idea about the kind of people they have taken on. But what the terrorists are also counting on is that Americans will not have the stomach for the long haul. They clearly know that the coming retaliation will not be the end but the beginning. And when the terrorists strike back again, they have let us know that the results could make the assault on the World Trade Center look puny. They are banking that Americans will then cave. They have seen a great country quarrel to the edge of constitutional crisis over a razor-close presidential election. They have seen it respond to real threats in the last few years with squeamish restraint or surgical strikes. They have seen that, as Israel has been pounded by the same murderous thugs, the United States has responded with equanimity. They have seen a great nation at the height of its power obsess for a whole summer over a missing intern and a randy Congressman. They have good reason to believe that this country is soft, that it has no appetite for the war that has now begun. They have gambled that in response to unprecedented terror, the Americans will abandon Israel to the barbarians who would annihilate every Jew on the planet, and trade away their freedom for a respite from terror in their own land. We cannot foresee the future. But we know the past. And that past tells us that these people who destroyed the heart of New York City have made a terrible mistake. This country is at its heart a peaceful one. It has done more to help the world than any other actor in world history. It saved the world from the two greatest evils of the last century: Nazism and Soviet Communism. It responded to its victories in the last war by pouring aid into Europe and Japan. In the Middle East, America alone has ensured that the last hope of the Jewish people is not extinguished and has given more aid to Egypt than to any other country. It risked its own people to save the Middle East from the pseudo-Hitler in Baghdad. America need not have done any of this. Its world hegemony has been less violent and less imperial than any other comparable power in history. In the depths of its soul, it wants its dream to itself, to be left alone, to prosper among others, and to welcome them to the freedom America has helped secure. But whenever Americans have been challenged, they have risen to the task. In some awful way, these evil thugs may have done us a favor. America may have woken up forever. The rage that will follow from this grief and shock may be deeper and greater than anyone now can imagine. Think of what the United States ultimately did to the enemy that bombed Pearl Harbor. Now recall that American power in the world is all but unchallenged by any other state. Recall that America has never been wealthier, and is at the end of one of the biggest booms in its history. And now consider the extent of this wound - the greatest civilian casualties since the Civil War, an assault not just on Americans but on the meaning of America itself. When you take a step back, it is hard not to believe that we are now in the quiet moment before the whirlwind. Americans will recover their dead, and they will mourn them, and then they will get down to business. Their sadness will be mingled with an anger that will make the hatred of these evil fanatics seem mild. I am reminded of a great American poem written by Herman Melville after the death of Abraham Lincoln, the second founder of the country: "There is sobbing of the strong, And a pall upon the land; But the People in their weeping Bare the iron hand; Beware the People weeping When they bare the iron hand." Submitted by: Rich Moore ................................................ "There is no security, no safety, in the appeasement of evil. It must be the core of Western policy that there be no sanctuary for terror. And to sustain such a policy, free men and free nations must unite and work together." --Ronald Reagan ............................................. Saw the note in your newsletter tonight in which the old jarhead (my status, as well) assured today's jarheads that there is no disrespect in our use of the word kids. There isn't at all. When we look at photos of ourselves as young marines, we see the kids we were (and still are inside). And when we see our sons (and daughters) graduate from boot camp, we are so VERY proud of these kids (the few, the Proud). We see them as our sons and younger brothers. In fact, I refer to today's Marines as "The Kids." I have a feeling that some of The Kids -- our recon Marines -- are scouting camps and caves in Afghanistan as I type this. Let's pray for them and all those that will soon be demonstrating to Bin Laden that it is best to let sleeping giants enjoy their slumber. .............................................. Sgt. Grit, Please forgive an ex-Army Combat Engineer and Army Airborne Special Forces commo Sgt for reading a newsletter about and by the Corps. I wish all the guys I served with could read this newsletter. It would make them proud to know that this country isn't really ready to go to Hell like the news media makes it out to be. I read the responses of the Marines in here, regardless of age, gender, or state of health and I know that, to a person, they'd pick up their weapons and go tomorrow if the call came. Someday it may. The week after the attack in NYC, I could have sworn I heard the voice of a Nation like it was the week after Pearl Harbor. Now I'm starting to hear some of the whiners and flag burners starting to spout their BS again. I just thank God for the people like your readers who aren't afraid to lift up their voices and be heard. I am proud to be an American and to have served my country in Viet Nam and God bless all of you who take the time to make this newsletter the inspiration that it is to all of us who read it. It's time for us to do our part again. Let's find a way to serve this great nation again in whatever capacity we can. Never lose hope, we will prevail. And I, for one, will never stack arms while I'm able to lift one. G. Page former 5th SF. ............................................... Dear Sarge, As a former Marine (70-71) and combat veteran of Vietnam, the events of Sept. 11, hit particularly hard as they unfolded. Any twinges of memory regarding the difficult times we all endured during that era vanished for ever. What must now be done will be difficult and difficult for the American people to understand. It is not in our nature to be much more aggressive than being upset over a parking space and what we must do now will require our young servicemen do things that they probably never imagined. We must hunt them down and vanquish them from the face of the earth. May they do so as safely as possible. All of our brothers and sisters in the services are in our prayers and thoughts, along with their families. God's speed and God Bless America. Tom Gillespie USMC Semper Fi ................................................ We'll fight to the last 50-year-old A couple of weeks ago I indicated that if I could, I'd enlist today and help my country track down those responsible for killing thousands of innocent people in New York City and Washington, D.C. But I'm 50 now and the Armed Forces says I'm too old to track down terrorists. You can't be older than 35 to join the Army. They've got the whole thing backwards. Instead of sending 18-year-olds off to fight, they ought to take us old guys. You shouldn't be able to join until you're at least 35. For starters: -- Researchers say 18-year-olds think about sex every 10 seconds. Old guys only think about sex every 15 seconds, leaving us more than 28,000 additional seconds per day to concentrate on the enemy. -- Young guys haven't lived long enough to be cranky and a cranky soldier is a dangerous soldier. If we can't kill the enemy we'll complain them into submission. "My back hurts!" "I'm hungry!" "Where's the remote control?" -- An 18-year-old hasn't had a legal beer yet and you shouldn't go to war until you're at least old enough to legally drink. An average old guy, on the other hand, has consumed 126,000 gallons of beer by the time he's 35 and a jaunt through the desert heat with a backpack and M-60 would do wonders for the beer belly. -- An 18-year-old doesn't like to get up before 10 a.m. Old guys get up early just to show we can (and to steal the neighbor's newspaper). -- If old guys were captured we couldn't spill the beans because we'd probably forget where we put them. In fact, name, rank and serial number would be a real brain teaser. If it wasn't for the age barrier, I'd pretty much get into the Army without a hitch. According to the Army Internet site, I'd need to pass an entrance exam (officially called an ASVAB), but the sample questions I saw weren't exactly headache material. For example: A magnet will attract: a) water b) a flower c) a cloth rag d) a nail I took a wild stab and guessed, "nail," knowing they'd probably stick me in some desk job with Army Intelligence after Boot Camp. If 12 workers are needed to run 4 machines, how many workers are needed to run 20 machines? a) 16 b) 18 c) 3 d) 60 Let's see...three workers per machine times 20 machines...errr...hmmm...uhhh...60? Finally, they wanted to know if I had command of the English language, just in case I had to describe an enemy camp from memory. Small most nearly means: a) Sturdy b) Round c) Cheap d) Little I knew this cheap, little sturdy guy once, but I wrote down little. Now you know where the first questions come from for the "Who Wants To Be A Millionaire" game show. Boot camp would actually be easier for old guys. We're used to getting screamed and yelled at and we actually like soft food. We've also developed a deep appreciation for guns and rifles. We like them almost better than naps. The Army could lighten up on the obstacle course, however. I've been to the desert and didn't see a single 20-foot wall with rope hanging over the side. I can hear the Drill Sergeant now. "Get down and give!" And the running part is kind of a waste of energy. I've never seen anyone outrun a bullet. I'm reminded of the story of the young bull and the old bull standing on a hill looking down on the cows. "Let's run down there and make love to one of those cows," says the young bull. "How about we WALK down there and make love to ALL those cows," replies the old bull. Patience is something most 18-year-olds simply do not have. For good reason, too. An 18-year-old has the whole world ahead of him. He's still learning to shave. To actually carry on a conversation. To wear pants without the top of the butt crack showing and the boxer shorts sticking out. To learn that a pierced tongue catches food particles. And that a 200-watt speaker in the back seat of a Honda Accord can rupture an eardrum. All great reasons to keep our sons at home to learn a little more about life before sending them off to a possible death. Let us old guys track down those dirty, rotten cowards who attacked our hearts three weeks ago today. The last thing they'd want to see right now is a couple of million old guys with attitudes. ....................................... To all those airmen, soldiers, sailors, and especially to the Marines who are going overseas, just three words: GIVE EM' HELL. From a Soon To Be Marine Semper Fi!!! God Bless America and the rest of the free world. .............................................. I was reading your news letter and saw this: I was just reading some quotes from kids in a high school in California concerning the tragedy that has befallen the US. One said, "I wouldn't fight, I love myself too much to put myself at risk", another said "it didn't happen in Oakland so I'm not concerned". There was more, but I can't even write it down, it makes me so sick to think these little b****** could be so heartless and self-centered. As the wife of a former Marine all I can say is, the parents of these kids should know they did a lousy job of raising these monsters. Joyce Foreit ..... Well I couldn't believe my eyes!!! Then I thought of all the quotes that I have read in you news letters and this one came to mind.... "War is an ugly thing, but not the ugliest of things. The decayed and degraded state of moral and patriotic feeling which thinks that nothing is worth war is much worse. The person who has nothing for which he is willing to fight, nothing which is more important than his own personal safety, is a miserable creature and has no chance of being free unless made and kept so by the exertions of better men than himself." -JS Mill, 1863 I'm just glad that ALL of our youth doesn't think this way. Lcpl Cokel JL 88-92 ................................................... I just finished a two day in service training for Arrest & Control and found the most pleasure I got was in thinking that my suspect was Bin Laden, what ecstasy. My partner thought I was a little to crazy and felt I should slow it down a bit. Hell after 27years with LAPD I finally have a mental target to work on. I only regret that I can not personally meet the skinny little ass@#$* and show him some take down form we train to do. Sorry I am not a Eagle, Globe and Anchor, but I do have the Eagle and Anchor and would happily serve again. A quiet Friend of the USMC ....................................... Remember, your father also had a history of rheumatic fever as a youngster. He tried to get into several services, but of course no one would take him. He finally applied to the U.S. Army. After asking him to sign a "waiver", he was finally accepted, and served his country for three years. If Dan Rather really wanted military service. Perhaps not the elite Marines, but maybe the Army. I do not now, nor ever have liked Dan Rather - so this story makes the bile rise in my throat. Sincerely, Joan C. Whitton, wife of the deceased Col. Randel F. Whitton, who lived to be 80 years old, (despite the rheumatic fever he experienced many years before.) ........................................ "The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men (people) to do nothing." Edmund Burke? "The man who cannot be angry at evil usually lacks enthusiasm for good." Submitted by: Thomas McCalmont ........................................... Broken Arrow, Oklahoma School officials remove "God Bless America" signs from schools in fear that someone might be offended. Channel 12 News in Long Island, New York, orders flags removed from the newsroom and red, white, and blue ribbons removed from the lapels of reporters. Why? Management did not want to appear biased and felt that our nations flag might give the appearance that "they lean one way or another." Berkeley, California bans U.S. Flags from being displayed on city fire trucks because they didn't want to offend anyone in the community. In an "act of tolerance" the head of the public library at Florida Gulf Coast University ordered all "Proud to be an American" signs removed so as to not offend international students. I, for one, am quite disturbed by these actions of so-called American citizens; and I am tired of this nation worrying about whether or not we are offending some individual or their culture. Since the terrorist attacks on September 11, we have experienced a surge in patriotism by the majority of Americans. However, the dust from the attacks had barely settled in New York and Washington D.C. when the "politically correct" crowd began complaining about the possibility that our patriotism was offending others. I am not against immigration, nor do I hold a grudge against anyone who is seeking a better life by coming to America. In fact, our country's population is almost entirely comprised of descendants of immigrants; however, there are a few things that those who have recently come to our country, and apparently some native Americans, need to understand. First of all, it is not our responsibility to continually try not to offend you in any way. This idea of America being a multi-cultural community has served only to dilute our sovereignty and our national identity. As Americans, we have our own culture, our own society, our own language, and our own lifestyle. This culture, called the "American Way" has been developed over centuries of struggles, trials, and victories by millions of men and women who have sought freedom. Our forefathers fought, bled, and died at places such as Bunker Hill, Antietam, San Juan, Iwo Jima, Normandy, Korea, Vietnam, etc., etc... We speak English, not Spanish, Arabic, Chinese, Japanese, Russian, or any other language. Therefore, if you wish to become part of our society - learn our language! "In God We Trust" is our national motto. This is not some off-the-wall, Christian, Right Wing, political slogan - it is our national motto. It is engraved in stone in the House of Representatives in our Capitol and it is printed on our currency. We adopted this motto because Christian men and women, on Christian principles, founded this nation; and this is clearly documented throughout our history. If it is appropriate for our motto to be inscribed in the halls of our highest level of Government, then it is certainly appropriate to display it on the walls of our schools. God is in our pledge, our National Anthem, nearly every patriotic song, and in our founding documents. We honor His birth, death, and resurrection as holidays, and we turn to Him in prayer in times of crisis. If God offends you, then I suggest you consider another part of the world as your new home, because God is part of our culture and we are proud to have Him. We are proud of our heritage and those who have so honorably defended our freedoms. We celebrate Independence Day, Memorial Day, Veterans Day, and Flag Day. We have parades, picnics, and barbecues where we proudly wave our flag. As an American, I have the right to wave my flag, sing my national anthem, quote my national motto, and cite my pledge whenever and wherever I choose. If the Stars and Stripes offend you, or you don't like Uncle Sam, then you should seriously consider a move to another part of this planet. The American culture is our way of life, our heritage, and we are proud of it. We are happy with our culture and have no desire to change, and we really don't care how you did things where you came from. We are Americans, like it or not, this is our country, our land, and our lifestyle. Our First Amendment gives every citizen the right to express his opinion about our government, culture, or society, and we will allow you every opportunity to do so. But once you are done complaining, whining, and griping about our flag, our pledge, our national motto, or our way of life, I highly encourage you take advantage of one other great American freedom, the right to leave. Submitted by: Many, many of you ............................................. This email is in response to LCpl Josef M Surunis's paragraph in the October 12 newsletter about "Those bastard high school students...(with) no pride or anything to a Country that does nothing but support them." Well, that statement really PISSED ME OFF, and I must say that though there are some high school students who do not realize the price paid for our freedom, we are not all spoiled little kids who think everything should be handed to us. He would have been amazed to see the number of the bastard students at my school who have been dressing up in red, white, and blue every day since the attacks to show their support of our country. And he surely would have been shocked to see almost our whole school of bastards file outside during our lunch break to pray for and remember those who lost their lives Sept. 11. I can assure him I know just as many bastard adults with no respect for our country as I do bastard high school students. I am a junior at Waverly Central High in Tennessee and I plan on joining the Marine Reserves in college. I know I may not have as much respect for America as you Marines because I have not yet fought for her, but that does not mean I take this country for granted. And that goes the same for all of my high school friends. Many of us have friends in the service who may end up going over seas to fight these terrorists. I myself have a boyfriend going through boot camp at PI. We know that this war is a reality, and we do not take it lightly. Ginger Shupe (high school student and proud American) ............................................................ To All of You I would just like to share with you what America means to me. I would also like to Thank you & your families for all you risk to maintain what she stands for. Like many of you I have children, mine are ages 3 & 51/2, so I would like to tell you from the depths of my heart I am grateful for your courage & unselfishness to protect them, their future and their freedom. May God bless and watch over you and your families when you have to be away as well as all other branches of the armed forces in our country and those countries who have agreed or offered support or help us. Thank You Again Diane F. Papillion, Ne. ...................................................... Sgt. Grit, This is an open letter to your readers. I've seen news specials on CNN about what's happening in Afghanistan - the murdering of innocent civilians, execution of women, starving children, harboring terrorists, etc. The efforts of the Northern Alliance against the Taliban government has also been highlighted. The situation in Afghanistan and the events of Sept. 11 got me to thinking about one approach to help solving the problems. I remember how Americans went to France prior to WWI to fly in the French air force against the Germans. Americans went to China prior to WWII to fight for the Chinese against the Japanese. We also went to England and fought with the British against the Germans before America entered the war. So. . . who would be interested in going to Afghanistan and join the fight against the Taliban? They certainly could use the help. I realize this is a 'stretch', but why not take the fight to the enemy? Our government can't take the necessary action required to take out the Taliban government. It must be done internally. Are we going to wait and see what happens? If so, how long are we willing to wait? So far, the President has been arm twisting other governments to join a coalition against terrorism. Many countries have gone so far as to freeze financial assets where possible. Will that be enough? Do we have the resolve to take the actions necessary to defeat terrorists. . . to enter the various countries that harbor and support terrorists. . . to 'smoke them out of their holes', as President Bush said . . . and kill them? We only have to look at how Israel deals with terrorists to know that the only to 'win' this war is to kill the enemy. I'd like to hear from some of you on what you think of the idea of joining the fight. Semper Fi, Craig Mullis MSgt USMC(Ret) Craig N. Mullis ................................................... Hi Sgt. Grit, I got out of the Corps in 94 after having served honorably for 4 years. During this time, I could not help but think what a mistake I made for getting out. Now, with the attack on our country, I've done the only thing in my heart that I knew I had to do: I went to see the recruiter and put my package in. As of now, I am just waiting to hear from HQMC to see if it will be approved. I'm sure that it will, and when I am back in uniform this is one more Leatherneck that these camel jockeys are gonna have to deal with. One shot, One kill. Semper Fi, Sgt. Duran ........................................... Armed Services' Banners Raised Over Trade Center Site By Jim Fitzgerald Associated Press Writer Published: Sep 27, 2001 NEW YORK (AP) - On a 10th-floor rooftop littered with shards of glass and concrete from the collapse of the World Trade Center, the colors of each of the nation's armed services were raised Thursday in honor of veterans who died in the disaster. One by one, a red Marine Corps flag, blue Navy and Air Force flags and white flags of the Army and Coast Guard were flown next to a larger Stars and Stripes. Just below them was a banner that read, "We Will Never Forget." "We don't know how many veterans were killed in this terrorist act," said Marine Maj. David Andersen. "We may never know. But we do know there were many among the rescuers and the other victims and this is to honor them all." The hard-hatted, ad hoc color guard was made up of active Marines in uniform and former or reserve Marines from the Police Department's Emergency Services Unit. The ceremony took place on a 10th-floor setback in the World Financial Center, just across the street from where the trade center stood. The building has been judged damaged but sound. The military men on the rooftop and some of the workers below snapped salutes as the ceremony ended. "This was a strange ceremony," said Marine Brig. Gen. Andrew Davis. "But this is a war and their sacrifice was a wartime sacrifice. Some of these victims may have fought in another war. Now we're engaged in another form of struggle and this honors them." The names of some of the missing were written on one edge of the Marine flag, including that of Michael Curtin, a police sergeant and a sergeant major in the Marine reserve. In 1995, Andersen said, Curtin went to Oklahoma City to help with the rescue work when the federal building there was bombed. When he found the body of Capt. Randolph Guzman, a Marine recruiter, he organized a formal ceremony for the removal of the body. "Marines don't leave Marines behind," Andersen said. "We wanted to do for Sergeant Major Curtin what he did for Captain Guzman." Bill Sasscer 1st MarDiv, 1st Tank Bn, 59-63 "Don't argue with a fool. The spectators can't tell the difference." Charles Nalin. ............................................... Editorial from a Romanian newspaper An ode to America Why are Americans so united? They don't resemble one another even if you paint them! They speak all the languages of the world and form an astonishing mixture of civilizations. Some of them are nearly extinct, others are incompatible with one another, and in matters of religious beliefs, not even God can count how many they are. Still, the American tragedy turned three hundred million people into a hand put on the heart. Nobody rushed to accuse the White House, the army, the secret services that they are only a bunch of losers. Nobody rushed to empty their bank accounts. Nobody rushed on the streets nearby to gape about. The Americans volunteered to donate blood and to give a helping hand. After the first moments of panic, they raised the flag on the smoking ruins, putting on T-shirts, caps and ties in the colors of the national flag. They placed flags on buildings and cars as if in every place and on every car a minister or the president was passing. On every occasion they started singing their traditional song: "God Bless America!". Silent as a rock, I watched the charity concert broadcast on Saturday once, twice, three times, on different TV channels. There were Clint Eastwood, Willie Nelson, Robert de Niro, Julia Roberts, Cassius Clay, Jack Nicholson, Bruce Springsteen, Silvester Stalone, James Wood, and many others whom no film or producers could ever bring together. The American's solidarity spirit turned them into a choir. Actually, choir is not the word. What you could hear was the heavy artillery of the American soul. What neither George W. Bush, nor Bill Clinton, nor Colin Powell could say without facing the risk of stumbling over words and sounds, was being heard in a great and unmistakable way in this charity concert. I don't know how it happened that all this obsessive singing of America didn't sound croaky, nationalist, or ostentatious! It made you green with envy because you weren't able to sing for your country without running the risk of being considered chauvinist, ridiculous, or suspected of who-knows-what mean interests. I watched the live broadcast and the rerun of its rerun for hours listening to the story of the guy who went down one hundred floors with a woman in a wheelchair without knowing who she was, or of the Californian hockey player, who fought with the terrorists and prevented the plane from hitting a target that would have killed other hundreds or thousands of people. How on earth were they able to bow before a fellow human? Imperceptibly, with every word and musical note, the memory of some turned into a modern myth of tragic heroes. And with every phone call, millions and millions of dollars were put in a collection aimed at rewarding not a man or a family, but a spirit which nothing can buy. What on earth can unite the Americans in such a way? Their land? Their galloping history? Their economic power? Money? I tried for hours to find an answer, humming songs and murmuring phrases which risk of sounding like commonplaces. I thought things over, but I reached only one conclusion. Only freedom can work such miracles! .............................................. Greetings My Family of Marines Brothers and Sisters , Ok good people here it is the reason we are Marines. . To defend our country! our homes our children ! Veteran Marines Do not despair no matter what your age is because we are on the front lines every day here at home KEEP YOUR EYES AND EARS OPEN be aware of your environment you know what to look for But do not act alone. carry a cell phone report any strange activity to the police ,most cops and firefighters are Marines, Pray for our active military family fighting in Afghanistan send them letters and packages ,books and inspiration mostly our love. Watch out for discrimination against any ethnic group. Americans are a just people WE THE PEOPLE set the example for the rest of the world . HATE is NOT an AMERICAN VALUE it is the terrorists best weapon ,Don't be a Target remind every citizen of this fact .Stand UP be heard stay in touch with each other by Marine Chat groups ,United WE STAND because there is only one type of Marine ,PROUD AND ALWAYS FAITHFUL TO GOD AND COUNTRY. SEMPER FI Sincerly your Brother Marine Sincerely Joseph Garcia ............................................. Boy oh Boy has the last couple weeks been tough. Being out since 96 and the thought of overseas deployment means I'd have to drop about thirty pounds. My old buddy's are ready to get back in but are fearful of being placed in some back corner of Quantico guarding some ammo dump and counting the whitetail deer. Everyone just feels helpless. On behalf of myself and my family I wish health and safe return to everyone fighting this plague. Godbless,Cpl Zabelsky 90-96 ........................................... FREEDOM ISN'T FREE I watched the flag pass by one day. It fluttered in the breeze. A young Marine saluted it, and then he stood at ease. I looked at him in uniform; so young, so tall, so proud. With hair cut square and eyes alert, he'd stand out in any crowd. I thought, how many men like him had fallen through the years? How many died on foreign soil? How many Mother's tears? How many pilots' planes shot down? How many foxholes were soldiers' graves? No, Freedom is not free. I heard the sound of 'Taps' one night, when everything was still. I listened to the bugler play and felt a sudden chill. I wondered just how many times that 'Taps' had meant 'Amen', when a flag had draped a coffin of a brother or a friend. I thought of all the children, of Mothers and the Wives, of Fathers, Sons and Husbands with interrupted lives. I thought about a graveyard at the bottom of the sea, of unmarked graves at Arlington. No, Freedom isn't free! Remember this . And . GOD BLESS AMERICA! I didn't know weather or not this was on you site. But I felt you might like it. Sincerely Yours, J.Carrera ................................... Sgt. Grit, I just saw that the we started attacks against Afghanistan. We waited 26 days, more time than they deserved. Now they get what they deserve. I hope everyone out there has said a prayer as I have for all our servicemen and women. God Bless America Semper Fi Cpl. Matthies 85-88 .............................................. Dear sir Hello I'm seventeen years old. I recently read a e-mail with numerous responses on from which caught my attention. It was from Joyce Foreit. She said how High School students are not willing to fight for their country. This offends me and numerous of my friends I personally am willing. I already have a leave date set for June 10,2002 along with fourof my friends and the number grows weekly. So if possible please pass this on for her to see because she had put a label on teens everywhere. Semper Fi Scott B Denison, Colorado .............................................. Sgt. Grit, I am a senior this year and after graduation I was planning on going through Marine Corps ROTC. I gave this much thought, and after I saw what happened Sept. 11, instead of waiting around for ROTC I stepped up and will go just as my forefathers have done. I leave for MCRD Parris Island August 5th, 2002 with MOS 0200. I call upon my generation to take the challenge to stand up against our enemies, in order to preserve our freedom the men and women in the past have died to protect. God bless America! Semper Fi, Do or Die! Rick Weeks ................................................. "The constitutional republic of our Founding Fathers is not an anachronism. If the federal government were to abstain from the activities not authorized by the Constitution and rededicate itself to its constitutionally delegated functions, we would in fact be more secure and more able to respond to this national campaign of terror."--W. James Antle III .............................................. I am a Marine Mustang ( Pvt-SSgt, 1955-1963, 0300-0311-0369), (WO-Major, 1963-1979, 3102). I am 66 years old and still work out four days a week and am excellent health. I am ready to deploy if General Jones calls. Very unlikely; but, I am ready to do whatever I'm called upon to do. I have a plaque on the wall of my den that reads " for those who fight for it, life has a flavor the protected will never know". On 11Sep01, the protected came under fire and American heroes emerged. We are a great country and now must come together, smoke out the rats and snakes from their holes, and eliminate/terminate. Stand behind our President and be prepared for a lengthy campaign. Watch closely the Jane Fonda types( I put Slick Willy and his wife in the same category as Jane. What we call in Kentucky as "pure white trash"). Keep up the good work in your web site. Semper Fi Mike Hemlepp Major USMC (Ret) St Croix, USVI ................................................. New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani put it well the other day when he said that Americans should begin to behave the way the British did during the London blitz: Cope with the danger when it appears but otherwise go cheerfully about your lives. Meanwhile, the government has to do everything possible to destroy the anthrax threat at its state-sponsored source." --Wall Street Journal ...................................................... In light of the recent attack on the continental United States, I find as myself as a volunteer in the middle of the fray serving as chairman of the Local Emergency Planning Committee for the Alaska Capital City, Juneau . We have been developing plans for all hazard emergencies including Terrorist Response and Weapons of Mass Destruction. As of this date, these plans are in the process of being reviewed and up dated. Also, after serving in the Marines during the cold war, five years ago I joined the Alaska Defense Force and currently serve as Battalion Commander of 1st Civ. Spt Battalion. We are on alert status with a warning order which was issued September 28, 2001. Some of the objectives to be secured include all the Alaska airports and state ferries. So far, the Alaska Army National Guard will be activated next week and we will back them up if and when activated. I encourage all civilian and military personnel to go to the FEMA website and look up the EMI classes on emergency management and response. Become familiar with and the following: IS-1 Emergency Program Manager, An Orientation to the Position, IS 2 Emergency Preparedness, USA, IS-3 Radiological Emergency Management, IS-5 Hazardous Materials: A Citizen's Orientation, IS-7 A Citizen's Guide to Disaster Assistance. In addition to the above courses it would be wise to be informed on the basic emergency response used during emergencies: IS-195 Incident Command. This is the basic package that all citizens should prepare themselves to be ready to use. ............................................... Let us have faith that right makes might, and in that faith let us to the end dare to do our duty as we understand it. Abraham Lincoln ............................................... We are perplexed, but not in despair; Persecuted, but not forsaken, cast down but not destroyed. IICorinthians 4:8,9 ................................................ Times of heroism are generally times of terror. Emerson ................................................... Sgt Grit- As a former Marine, I read all your emails with pride. A deep seated pride. We Marines show undying patriotism in our country and pride in our Corps. Our colors never run. We're also as a lot substantially smarter than most people stereotype us as being. In your most recent missive though I was a little distressed to read one item (see below) that to me doesn't symbolize Marine beliefs and standards, and I was surprised you printed it. We're smarter than this. I know he may have meant it as a joke, but somehow this came off as different than the other jokes about getting the bastards who did this. He implies that all Arabs are responsible for what happened and that somehow as a result of this tragedy and the ensuing actions, Arabs no longer exist in 2032. The genocide implied by this story is as sickening, if not more, as the tragedy itself. If weallow our thinking to stoop to that level, not only are we no better than the Tangos, but we are as bad as Hitler. Somehow the underlying sentiment was different than the "lets nuke the bastards" jokes going around. In my heart of hearts, I truly hope Frank did not mean this as it came off to me and perhaps others, nor do I believe that you published this with that thought either. However, throughout the jokes and the mechanisms we use to cope with this tragedy, we must remember that this was committed by EXTREMISTS. People that been indoctrinated into a belief system that perverts an otherwise great religion, that cherishes peace above all. There are extremists of nearly every faith. Lets not forget the other wackos out there, just because this is on the front page today. I myself am not Muslim, but I can see that the goals and beliefs of Islam are very similar to all the other major religions of the world, Christianity, Catholicism, Judaism, etc. To brand all Muslims as bad is just as wrong as an Anti-Semite that sees all Jews as bad. Lets focus our energies on isolating these bastards and taking out terrorism, cell by cell, not the race that currently symbolizes the villain of today. You don't need to print this, I just wanted to let you know how this one item came off. Semper Fi, Thomas Thornbury ............................................... Dear Sergeant Grit: I've read your several letters and articles and found them all inspiring and comforting, in many cases I found them bringing tears to this old warrior's eyes. I simply want to know one simple thing.. Why is it that our children must fight the same fights that we have. As a retired Air Force officer, I don't hold the right to say that simple phrase that means so much to a marine: Semper Fi. Yet, my son has chosen that way of life. There are no words to state the sorrow I have felt as those under my command have fallen. For those who remember the spring of 1990 when two young Airmen fell at the hands of terrorists, they were mine. It was I who got to explain the cruelty of terrorism to their parents, and it was I who has had to harbor that for a lifetime. Today, my emotions are so very mixed. I'm so proud that my son has chosen to join the profession of arms and fight for that which we hold so very dear-yet I find myself wishing he had not. These days, I find myself wishing that us "old warriors" were allowed to go